The Sweeney has nothing to do with the 70s TV show with the same title. While it does feature an old tough guy named Regan and young sergeant Carter, the movie has nothing in common with the TV series.
The Sweeney are the Flying Squad of London’s Metropolitan Police that is tasked of cracking down on armed robberies and violent crimes. But if the cases in the movie are the basis, they are bad at their job. The head of the department is Regan (Ray Winstone) with Carter (Ben Drew) as his young sidekick.
The Sweeney is by-the-numbers cop thriller without any sense of humor. Jack Regan retires from the service after the higher ups are already tired of him getting his co-workers killed. He goes on a solo mission to bag a Serbian gangster.
The plot is set up for a failed gun fight that leads to a short car chase. Then it spends some time explaining the plot to viewers who are still paying attention to what’s happening in the movie. This is repeated three more times and then The Sweeney ends.
The Sweeney feels like a low budget movie, from its gun fights, car chases, and props. The gun fights elicit no excitement at all. There’s no urgency felt in the car chases, which are clearly filmed at slow speeds.
The characters are paper-thin and you can’t sympathize with any of the characters. One can die any moment and you wouldn’t care about him at all. The movie tried hard to be hard and this is the reason why it is plagued by over the top cockney tough man dialogues.
If you have better things to do, avoid watching The Sweeney. Actually, you should avoid it even if you got some time to spare. It is outdated with several product placements that can make it look like a visual shopping catalog.