REVIEWS

Ken's Review: The Bank Job - Could Have Been Made For TV

by
March 9, 2008

  • US Release Date: March 7, 2008
  • Genre: Heist, Thriller
  • MPAA: Rated R (for sexual content, nudity, violence and language)
  • Running Time: 110 minutes
  • Directed by: Roger Donaldson
  • on IMDb
  •    5/10

As I write this I'm flying to Austin to cover the SXSW Film Festival with Alex. I wish I could have come off of a week seeing great movies that would have pumped me up for the festival. Too bad the last two films I saw were The Bank Job and 10,000 B.C., which instead of exciting me left me longing to watch a really good film. Hopefully SXSW doesn't disappoint and I'll be able to catch something that will make up for the let downs I have recently experienced.

The Bank Job, if you can believe it, is about a bank heist gone wrong and then right again. Terry Leather (Jason Statham) is hired by Martine Love (Saffron Burrows) to break into a local bank and steal the contents from the safe deposit boxes. Little does he know that Martine is being blackmailed by a government agency looking to obtain a picture of a member of the royal family in a compromising situation. Terry, along with his crew, follows through with the heist but ends up stealing more then he or Martine bargained for.

Jason Statham stars as automobile dealer turned bank robber Terry Leather in The Bank Job.The Bank Job Review

I understand that this is a film based on actual events, but just because this is a true story, or one based loosely on a true story, doesn't make it one worth telling, at least not the way they presented it. To be honest I was bored through most of the film. There was virtually no character development, which led to not caring about anyone. There was a poor attempt to add some depth to Statham's character by dealing with his feelings for Martine, while at the same time being married. This attempt at character depth felt so forced and out of place that it would have been better to leave it out. The story was rushed to the point that things were happening without any explanation as to why. Half of the crew hired to perform the heist seemed to serve no purpose. If this is a based on a true story it sure didn't feel like one.

When it came down to it the only real reason I wanted to see The Bank Job was because Jason Statham is in it. The problem with Statham is that I like him too much. He is always good but can never make up for how bad the movies he chooses actually are. Still, I'm a sucker for the attitude and swagger he brings to each of his films. Even after seeing War, Dungeon Siege, The Transporter 2, and The One, I'll still end up seeing anything he's in just because he's in it.

Terry and his misfit crew try to dig into the safety deposit boxes in The Bank Job.The Bank Job Review

This is not the next Ocean's Eleven, Twelve or Thirteen. It is way more down to earth and realistic, but turns out to be extremely boring. This might have been story worth telling, but it wasn't told very well in this film. It felt like I was watching a made for TV movie but with a bit better quality. It's never good when you feel like you could be watching the same thing at home on cable.

This weekend turned out to be a horrible weekend for movies. Outside of Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day there isn't much I can recommend. I haven't seen CJ7 yet but I did love Shaolin Soccer so that might turn out good. I can only recommend The Bank Job for die-hard fans of bank heist films, although die-hard fans still might not like it too much. Hopefully Crank 2 will match Statham to a film that I will actually like.

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  • austin
    I thought the movie was really good.
  • Shaggie
    movie was cool really cool but not realistic unfortunatly
  • nha
    Made for TV - I find this very difficult to comprehend... firstly it was far from boring!.. it is a true brit style heist movie - and kept everyone I saw it with very entertained - in fact unlike the fictional stories of oceans eleven (which in typical hollywood style require shit sequels) I enjoyed the truth behind this story, I even wiki'd the events and the characters when I got home. If you think this only deserves to be on TV then I have to say - I'd push half the american tripe onto TV if I could.
  • Rob
    Made for TV!? Hardly. The was a nice slow burner. Started off slow, but got better as it went on. And what a story!
  • Billy
    I think this review is pretty living proof that sometimes movies are just graded off personal taste. What I mean is, you just didn't like the movie, but that does not mean it is bad or not a wonderful movie. My evidence is this : 76% on rotten tomatoes 90% Cream of the crop on rotten tomatoes (26 fresh 3 rotten) http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/1189844-the_bank_job/?critic=creamcrop Perhaps you just dont have a enjoyment for british heist movies?
  • Jamie
    I hardly see how this could have been a made-for-TV movie. It was quite exciting and entertaining (except for a 20 minute bit in the middle that could have been shortened to about 5). Nonetheless, I thoroughly enjoyed the movie. And furthermore, how could one say it was not realistic? The story is based in truth!!
  • C-Young
    I say it over and over... "Turkish" keeps watering down his line of credits with movies like this. British heist or not... This movie was simply OK. It wasn't terrible but at the same time I wouldn't recommend anyone paying money to see it. Take in mind... this is coming from a guy that hated Crank and each Transporter as well. This is a Netflixer... "How much longer on 'dem sausages?"
  • viva Milano
    You have to be kidding....Did you even watch the movie? The characters were developed quite well. I have the impression this reviewer couldn't understand the dialouge or the subtle body language used to good effect in this film. This Bank Job manages to be exciting right the way through without a car chase, giant explosions, or that silly gay ritche quirkiness that is something both refreshing and brilliant in this day and age. Bank Job lacked all the ridiculous elements present in todays action movies, most which are just ways to avoid having to come up with plot ideas and actual writing. The lack of these silly explosions and unbelivable stunts allow the movie to develop plot, and sub plots, beautifully. The statement about not knowing what was going on or why just shows that the reviewer clearly didn't understand the dialouge. Every element and the purpose of every additional villian was made very clear, just because it wasn't spoon fed to our reviewer like an infant he obviously missed it. The tendency of most movies nowdays to spell out everything so that even the most slow-witted in the room can U-N-D-E-R-S-T-A-N-D is deplorable. The BJ was an excellent example of how movies can be made without stooping to this kind of crap. Other than the reviewer it appears that most viewers understood the film and followed the plot and character development without any difficulty.
  • viva Milano
    You have to be kidding....Did you even watch the movie? The characters were developed quite well. I have the impression this reviewer couldn't understand the dialouge or the subtle body language used to good effect in this film. This Bank Job manages to be exciting right the way through without a car chase, giant explosions, or that silly gay ritche quirkiness that is something both refreshing and brilliant in this day and age. Bank Job lacked all the ridiculous elements present in todays action movies, most which are just ways to avoid having to come up with plot ideas and actual writing. The lack of these silly explosions and unbelivable stunts allow the movie to develop plot, and sub plots, beautifully. The statement about not knowing what was going on or why just shows that the reviewer clearly didn't understand the dialouge. Every element and the purpose of every additional villian was made very clear, just because it wasn't spoon fed to our reviewer like an infant he obviously missed it. The tendency of most movies nowdays to spell out everything so that even the most slow-witted in the room can U-N-D-E-R-S-T-A-N-D is deplorable. The BJ was an excellent example of how movies can be made without stooping to this kind of crap. Other than the reviewer it appears that most viewers understood the film and followed the plot and character development without any difficulty. This was a great film that I would recommend to anyone with a third grade education or higher.

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