Both this and its companion movie Sweeney! were cinema spin-offs from the successful hardboiled UK cop show of the 1970s, The Sweeney.
While the first movie tried to broaden its appeal for cinema by moving into the exotic terrain of political corruption, prostitutes and international high-finance, this sequel narrows the action back to traditional Flying Squad territory - as our team of Detective Inspector Jack Regan (John Thaw) and Sergeant Carter (Dennis Waterman) tackle a gang of bank blaggers.
This isn't your ordinary gang of bank blaggers. The leader carries a gold-plated sawn-off double-barrel shotgun made by the world's most famous shotgun maker, James Purdey & Sons.
And the gang lifts only the equivalent of one hundred thousand US dollars in each heist - if it goes over that target, the rest gets left in the getaway car. And one nice little detail. If any member of the gang gets wounded and can't escape with the rest of the gang, then he gets Purdeyed.
We discover a lot more about the gang as the film progresses - the trail of discovery leads Thaw and Carter to Malta where they eyewitness a life of luxurious ostentation that makes their simple life of beer, hamburgers and egg and bacon rolls seem, well... pretty ordinary, really. Crime certainly does pay, it seems - for a time, anyway.
Bringing the action closer to the television series does work to this sequel's benefit. But a lot of the action seems very heavily padded, as if there was not much more than an hour's worth of story here. Red herrings and extraneous plots abound; in the end it seems to be an entree dressed up as a main course.
The anamorphic widescreen transfer is excellent. Details are crisp and clear and the colour and shadow values are first-class.
Although this is a bare-bones budget release, the transfer quality is as good or better than DVDs costing more than twice the price. There are no apparent artefacts or signs of film-wear. Film grain is at an absolute minimum.
As with the first film in this series, the Dolby Digital stereo soundtrack is very standard, with no exceptional features of any sort other than being a very serviceable, clear track for both music and dialogue.
I think that overall this is a slightly better movie than its predecessor, and would be worth renting for an evening if you like the hardboiled British police yarns.
The lack of any extras would rule out purchase - and if you're a Sweeney fan you'd be better off waiting for release of the far-superior television series.