“The Bank Job” was Stranger than Fiction

Genres: Comedy, Drama, Thriller and Crime/Gangster
Running Time:
1 hr. 50 min.
Release Date:
March 7th, 2008 (wide)
MPAA Rating:
R for sexual content, nudity, violence and language.

Directed by: Roger Donaldson

JJ Rating: B+

Terry Leather (Jason Statham) is asked by Martine Love (Saffron Burrow) to perform the biggest bank heist (not yet known to them prior—but it became that) in history. She gave word that it would be simple and it would be without a hitch, and so his hesitation was drowned by the amount of money that they could get away with and he agreed. He got a group together and the plan went smoothly until the day after. The Bank Job.

As the movie started I thought I was watching some sort of film I had to go to a 24 Hour place to get. Unnecessary beginning that showed more than it needed to. If it just went to the edge and not further it would have been less intrusive and licentious and more controlled and tortuous. Less is more and less also allows for the imagination to give sway instead of being told right out what is going on. Hitchcock’s knife that doesn’t stab scene with the corn syrup blood for the movie Psycho is more about perception of what is going on then what is actually being shown. Directors tend to forget how powerful that is and they just want to SHOW EVERYTHING. No thank-you.

Aside from that horrible beginning, the movie was actually pretty good. It was witty and clever with a great cast. Jason Statham and Saffron Burrows were magnetic. Whenever they were on the screen there was fireworks that just exploded subtly and attention grabbingly. They were just really good together and it didn’t hurt that Saffron (her first name’s beauty outshines her last name, so using it whispers it ever so gently) was attractive.

Daniel Mays, James Faulkner, Alki David, Michael Jibson, Richard Lintern (II), David Suchet, Peter Bowles (II), Andrew Brooke (II), Trevor Byfield and Peter de Jersey (good lord that’s a lot of II’s) were a great cast. If the movie was a failure it would not be the fault of their acting.

There were lots of good scenes in The Bank Job. There is a scene in the trailer where a woman demands to know what is going on and when the officer tells her to itemize her security box so they know what is missing. She retorted that is the reason she has one, so she doesn’t have to tell people like him what’s in it. That made me laugh when I saw the trailer and also when I saw the movie. There are some suspenseful scenes towards the end and it all ties together well. There’s a bunch of clever lines. There is also a brutal beating. I would not be so sadden by this if it were not for the “based on a true story” being the premise.

The Michael X (Peter de Jersey) person was a lovely copy of America’s Malcolm X. Michael (sans the X; it’s just disturbing to have an X at the end of a name. Those that have it are tyrannical in action and thought) was a disgusting human being. What he did was clever, but it doesn’t make him more human and less scum. He had so much anger for things he did not have to go through. Instead of living a better life he decided that inflecting pain on those that have the same skin tone as people who were slave owners is a great and proud thing to do. Peter de Jersey did a great job, because I just wanted him to shut up and go away.

The Bank Job had government get its hands dirty from miles away. They wanted the bank to be robbed for a specific thing and they did not want be connected to the events that took place. How they distances themselves shows how powerful government was in the 1970’s and that must only be a fraction of what it is they can do. It’s scary and fascinating. Having ties in the neighborhood and people that can vouch for who you are is such a great gift that could come in handy. You never know when you’ll be mistaken for someone you’re not; someone who is in a lot of trouble.

I don’t know if I’ll buy it, but it was a good movie. I’d like it more if it didn’t feel the need to over-share at the beginning. There are so many things that happen in The Bank Job it’s very well done and doesn’t get bogged down with too much information. There is an even flow. It also brings about the phrase stranger than fiction. If this was made up there would be outcry of how implausible it is, but since it’s true events it’s hard to say it can’t happen since (for the most part) it did.

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