Movie Mind Says:  Add to Online Rental List

If You Like This You Should Watch:  The Italian Job, Chaos
Better Than:  The Recruit
Worse Than:  Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels

The Bank Job

Starring: Jason Statham, Saffron Burrows, James Faulkner

The Movie Mind finally got around to watching this bank-caper flick that is based on a real story. It may have come off a little too similar to The Italian Job, but it had some nice twists and turns that kept me intrigued. The fact that it was a real story only adds to the sheer absurdity that the British would go to such extraordinary lengths to cover up a scandal involving one of their own royal families. If this occurred in the U.S., it would have been in the press before the whole cover-up could have taken place.

The British thieves pull off what was one of the biggest bank heists ever, but the film lacks the same enthusiasm. The title couldn’t have been more apropos, as The Bank Job begins as merely a story about a bank robbery. Not until after the heist is pulled off does it develop a more interesting and complex underlying plot, which leaves us wondering how much of that was actually based on the real story?

Terry Leather (Statham) is your run of the mill dime-store crook, who makes out by dialing back odometers and scamming the unwitting. He had never dreamed of pulling off a major bank heist until an old flame, Martine Love (Burrows) presented him with the job of a lifetime. Unfortunately, Terry was not aware of the hidden motives that led Martine to recommend the job. In fact, Terry’s crew and their prevalent ineptitude played a large role in why she chose them for the gig. Things seem to go relatively smoothly, as does the film, until the crew realizes exactly what they have “inadvertently” stumbled upon. It is here that the real fun ensues, and the film becomes more entertaining than it had shown up to this point.

I always like to know the real story behind a movie based on real life events, especially when it is about something like the largest bank heist ever. It would seem to me that the juice would be in the details. Unfortunately for us viewers, there are no details. The film rushes through the specifics of the robbery which cause it to look less and less believable that these clowns could actually pull it off. If a movie needs the DVD extras to explain how it actually happened, you could say that the film lacked proper story-telling. 

I know there were some rave reviews of this film, but I just don’t see it. It reaches the basic tenants of being entertaining and worth your time to watch it, but not much more. I just couldn’t find anything about it that would make it too memorable.
Submitted 10-23-08

Interesting Cameo Appearance:  Mick Jagger (yes, that same Sir Michael Jagger of Rolling Stones infamy) as an uncredited bank employee. Jagger is from England and probably jumped at the chance to be in a film about his homeland’s biggest bank caper ever.

Memorable Quotes:
Tim Everett: And if it all goes pear-shaped? I assume it’s my ass on the line.
Miles Urquhart: You’re young and ambitious, Tim. A chance to make a name for yourself.

Martine Love: I know you, Terry. And I know your mates. You’ve always been looking for the big score. The one that makes sense of everything. I have it for you.

Guy Singer: Traditional fit, sir. One can’t raise one’s hands above one’s head. It tends to inhibit any impulsive acts of surrender.

Terry Leather: Look honey, I’m going to be working some strange hours over the next week or two, so don’t ask me what I’m doing because I don’t want to lie to you.

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