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The Bank Job

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Reviewer's grade: B+

 

There is a refreshing lack of bells and whistles in "The Bank Job," a heist flick in which even the title rejects cheap wit. This is a meat-and-potatoes thriller that delivers on the genre's roguish sense of fun. Based on the real-life robbery of a London bank in 1971, the film blends fact and speculation for a story that extends from the underworld to the corridors of British royalty. OK, so much of it is likely hooey, but that hardly matters.

 

Jason Statham stars as Terry Leather, a used-car salesman who assembles a scruffy gang of thieves to tunnel into the vaults of a Lloyd's Bank. The robbers get more than they bargained for when the looted safety deposit boxes turn up incriminating photographs of a royal family member and evidence of police corruption.

 

Director Roger Donaldson keeps things humming along, and he is aided and abetted by bang-up performances from Statham, Saffron Burrows and David Suchet as a sadistic porn king. R

 

"?Phil Bacharach 

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