WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
An aging thief (Hackman) gets muscled by his fence (DeVito) into taking one last big score before he retires Down Under with his extremely sexy wife (Rebecca Pidgeon). Along with his crew, who aren't getting any younger either, they plan to steal a huge shipment of Swiss gold before splitting up forever and enjoying the fruits of their labor.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
I think we'll all agree that everyone likes a good plot twist, but when your plot twists, turns, curves and rebounds in the final twenty minutes of a film, there's something to be said about overkill. Joe (Hackman) is an experienced thief who's learned over the years to plan in case anything goes wrong. That's fine, but how can you plan if things go wrong with what went wrong and then if that goes wrong, you've already planned what could have gone wrong? I mean, how careful can one guy be? Anyway, the film is great and very suspenseful until the last segment, in which it unravels into some strange mix of unrealistic gunfights, overdone suspense and overall ridicule.
The acting and all of the performances are actually fantastic. Hackman is his usual stoic self and DeVito plays the asshole to the tee, like he's done many times before. The rest of the supporting cast is also up to par with Delroy Lindo and Ricky Jay tagging along for the action as Hackman's longtime partners in crime. They play perfect foils (especially Jay) to Hackman's more exuberant character and the pleasure of watching Lindo get a beating is one I've always enjoyed (see THE ONE). All in all, this is reserved for people who enjoy watching the first half of a movie. It starts off great but in the end, it just leaves you a bit empty. Too bad, because everything else kicked ass about it. You can never get enough of thieves, guns, beautiful ladies and double-crossing schemes and they're all present in this one, but the ending... the ending....
Wow! They really spoil you on this one!! Cast and crew bios and a trailer to boot!!! Thank God the producers are so generous!!!! In case you're wondering, I'm being extremely sarcastic!!!!! There's absolutely nothing on this DVD except the above, which I find are an insult when presented on the box as "special features". WOW! Can I pause it too!?!?
All in all, this movie had lots of promise but unraveled in the end. It gets some extra points for the good performances but no more than that. As a huge fan of heist movies, I was really disappointed since I really wanted to like this film but unfortunately, it never really hit home. Rent it if you go to the video store and HEAT is already out.