The film ‘Wild Bill’ is set on the mean streets of London where Bill Hayward (Charlie Creed-Miles) returns on parole from prison after serving an eight-year term for violence and associated misdemeanours. Returning to his south London manor he attempts to establish a relationship with his teenage son Dean (Will Poulter) and his eight-year-old son Jimmy. Initially Dean resists all overtures from Bill and accuses him of having deserted them. Bill’s wife has long abandoned the two children and gone off to live in Spain with her lover.
Bill is determined to start again on the straight and narrow but his history and past business associates come back to haunt him. Bill had originally planned to leave London to start afresh in the North of England but Dean needs Bill to stay with them at the least temporarily to avoid them being put in care by the social services.
Bill’s youngest son Jimmy who, although only eight, becomes embroiled in the local drug dealing racket and is threatened by a local drug dealer and forced to deal drugs on the street corners. When Bill realises what has happened with his young son he becomes involved which leads to a violent climax where wild Bill lives up to his name and his reputation. Unfortunately the film ends with Bill having gained respect from his children but having been rearrested by the police for the violence he demonstrated in the showdown with the local drug dealing community.
Dexter’script is tight and realistic and marks the debut of an important voice in New British Cinema.