Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels

Common Sense Media says

Fast-paced romp has violence, gangsters, drugs.





What parents need to know

Positive messages

The movie laughs at the idea that characters can get involved with bad elements in the hopes of personal gain, fail miserably, and then count on dumb luck to get them out of potentially deadly trouble.

Positive role models

These characters are cool, funny, tough, and sometimes smart, but they're all members of the underworld. They work in shady businesses, acting on greed and violence to get their jobs done.


There are scenes of wild gun shooting, everything from antique rifles to automatic weapons. Many characters are shot and killed (others are wounded). There's copious amounts of blood. There are also fistfights and beatings, many threats, torture with golf balls, a man on fire, a man drowning, and a scene of a man punching a woman (though her face is obscured).


One of the gangsters works in a sex club. He's surrounded by things like paddles and dildos. Another scene takes place in a topless bar, with topless dancers out of focus in the background. Otherwise, there's sexual innuendo throughout.


Very strong language throughout includes many uses of "f--k," as well as "c--t," "p---y," "c--k," "s--t," "ass," "penis," "piss," "hell," "faggot," and "bastard," as well as "Jesus Christ." There are also many examples of British slang and insults like "wankers," "stupid cow," "bollocks," "dozy prat," "arsehole," and "wop bastard."

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Part of the plot involves stealing a huge supply of marijuana, and some of the characters are shown stoned. The heroes have a celebration in a pub; we see them drinking heavily in a montage, and then passing out. Many characters are seen drinking and smoking socially or in a background way. Cocaine is shown.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels -- which is the directorial debut of Guy Ritchie -- is a complex, fast-paced, loony, British crime movie with lots of violence, including guns and shooting, blood, dead bodies, fighting, brief torture, and many threats. In one quick shot, a man punches a woman (though her face isn't shown). One of the characters works in the sex industry and we see various sex toys lying around his office. There's some brief, out-of-focus nudity, and plenty of innuendo. Language is very strong, with multiple uses of "f--k" and various other words, including English slang and insults. The plot involves marijuana growers and stolen drugs, and characters are stoned. Characters drink alcohol and smoke cigarettes in a social/background way, and cocaine is shown. The mood of this movie is light and fun, and it has a strong cult following, so older teens probably already know all about it.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Four Londoners (Jason Flemyng, Dexter Fletcher, Nick Moran, and Jason Statham) save up their money to enter their buddy in a high-stakes poker game. Despite his skill at reading faces, he loses and they now owe a fortune to a tough gangster. They learn through their next-door neighbors -- whom they can hear talking through thin walls -- where they can find a huge stash of pot (and cash) with little or no security. They design a complex plan to steal it, involving a host of other gangsters and thugs, but of course everything goes wrong. It's then up to coincidence and dumb luck to save the day.

Is it any good?


At the time, it looked as if Guy Ritchie were yet another opportunist cashing in on the Quentin Tarantino fever of the 1990s (and indeed, Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction were even more popular in Ritchie's home of England than they were in America). But in retrospect, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels is an energetic, clever crime movie that looks into various little pockets of underworld life: sex, gambling, drugs, and hired thugs and uses them all against one another.

Ritchie's camera work is smooth and sprightly, and he has a definite rhythm for slang and profanity in his dialogue. He also has an eye for character actors, and at least two, Vinnie Jones and Jason Flemyng have gone on to interesting careers, while Jason Statham has become a full-fledged star. His way of diffusing violence with humor still definitely owes a little to Tarantino, but it works. Movie-savvy teens will likely be aware of the movie, since it's developed a cult following, but parents should be warned that the violence, though light in tone, is still intense.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the movie's violence. What is the tone of the violence? How does he diffuse the tension?

  • Are there any role models in this movie? Are the four heroes good characters, even though they do bad things?

  • Does this movie make crime look fun and/or appealing?

  • Why aren't there very many women in this world, or in this story? How are the few women treated?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:March 5, 1999
DVD release date:June 28, 2011
Cast:Jason Flemyng, Jason Statham, Vinnie Jones
Director:Guy Ritchie
Studios:Polygram, Universal Studios Home Entertainment
Run time:107 minutes
MPAA rating:R
MPAA explanation:strong violence, pervasive language, sexuality and drug content

This review of Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Adult Written bydarthsitkur November 17, 2012

it was okay but guy Ritchie's other movies are better

I personally prefer guy Ritchie's other films over this one, I didn't hate this one though because I am a guy Ritchie fan, it was awesome in the second half but the first half was pretty boring, and it would've been cool if they showed the crazy shootout towards the end

Parent Written byCazamic March 20, 2013

Stephen Marcus runs a Gangster Tour in London

I loved this film and recently took my kids on a gangster tour of London which actor as Stephen Marcus runs.

What other families should know
Too much violence
Teen, 16 years old Written byevolinag February 8, 2013

Guy Ritichie's furious debut. Mature teens and up!

"Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels" is a gangster comedy by Guy Ritchie released in 1998.
It is very sad Guy Ritchie is mostly known for either being Madonna's ex, or for having won the Razzie Award for "Swept Away", when seeing he can also do a movie like this. "Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels" is a sharp-witted gangster comedy with much exploitation, dark humour and memorable characters. Like its more popular follow-up, "Sn*tch", also this one here will not be every one's cup of tea, but it is a clear recommendation for everybody who enjoys good gangster flicks with humorous aspects, and if you liked "Pulp Fiction" or "Trainspotting", this is a suggestion. Ritchie is often compared to Quentin Tarantino, but note that while Tarantino always focuses on cinematic perfection, Ritchie's focus is entertainment - and it IS entertaining, but on a high level.
(SPOILERS may follow:)
"Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels" has many violent moments, but they all have a black comedy undertone.
Two graphic scenes involve around a character having its foot shot into a gory mess, and a man having a hatchet thrown into his back,
Apart from that, many, MANY people get shot, sometimes ending up bloody.
A man is tortured by setting his feet on fire, but it is very brief.
A man has a hatchet rammed into his arm, but he survives (there is blood, but overall, this is more comic than anything).
A man is beaten to death with a rubber penis (and yes, it isdepicted as silly as it sounds).
Some of the protagonists have a room filled up with cannabis plants, and consume it one time or the other. The marijuana is a main plot in this movie. However, the drug part in this movie is not as strong as in e.g. "Pulp Fiction" or "Trainspotting", but still strong.
The language is very srong, having at least 120 f-words and two uses of c*nt, as well as some milder profanity.
One character is the owner of a porn shop and it is seen several times. In one scene, we see a topless woman.
Overall, the movie has its violence, language and drug use, but the movie also has a strong comical undertone, the scenes have an in-your-face effect and are clearly meant to be satirical.
Recommended for viewers 15 and up.

What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking


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