Bandit is a Canadian-American crime-comedy starring Josh Duhamel (Transformers), Elisha Cuthbert (24), and Mel Gibson. The movie was produced by Redbox Originals and Quiver Productions, directed by Allan Ungar (Gridlocked), and opens September twenty third.
Bandit is a dramatization of the lifetime of George Galvan, “the Flying Bandit”, a infamous financial institution robber who accomplished 59 profitable heists in a row throughout the late 80’s earlier than being apprehended.
Bandit is a strong, likable, movie: properly solid, staged, and directed. Its topic, performed with appeal by Duhamel, performs into some of the enduring archetypes in our in style consciousness: the “gentleman thief” who eschews violence and survives on his wits and audacity. Galvan is an American convicted of white-collar crime and sentenced to minimum-security jail who breaks unfastened and flees to Canada the place he buys an ID (and thus, an alias) from a homeless man and charms his means into the lifetime of a church shelter volunteer (Cuthbert) in a matter of weeks.
When an opportunity encounter throughout a job hunt out in Vancouver demonstrates the shortage of safety in Canadian banks, Galvan embarks on a sequence of daring heists utilizing disguises, props, distractions, and his personal moxie to construct a brand new profession for himself. He’s pursued by an Ontario detective (performed by Nestor Carbonell) and bankrolled by the native leg-breaker (Mel Gibson, as probably the most likable thug in latest reminiscence).
It is a surprisingly intelligent movie that makes use of its interval setting for all its value: Ronald Reagan and the junk bond scandal of 1987 are incessantly alluded to, the laxity of pre-9/11 airport safety is used for one of many funniest gags within the movie, Tradition Membership and the Nintendo Leisure System make cameo appearances and basically, the shortage of surveillance state to which we have now turn out to be accustomed within the West is proven as being the important thing issue that permits to Galvan to use the system and evade seize for thus lengthy.
Ungar will not be a director I’m conversant in however his work on this movie is best than strong. His path is trendy and warranted, and the movie is properly paced and acted. Duhamel appears to actually rise to the fabric, reveling within the appeal and tenacity of his position with actual relish. Cuthbert is ok in a thankless position because the perplexed spouse, who turns into seduced by the hazard and audacity of her husband’s “profession”. Gibson actually elevates the movie: clearly he’s not the marquee draw he as soon as was, however he’s been a enjoyment of every part I’ve seen with him currently. He brings actual humor and humanity, discovering layers in a job that has actual subtext and significance. Gibson’s leg breaker acts as surrogate father to Galvan, a relationship he’s craved for his total life, however the film by no means beats us over the pinnacle with it. It’s understated, trusting the viewers to make the connections which is basically refreshing.
The movie will not be good: most of Galvan’s jobs are proven to be really easy that we hardly ever really feel like he’s at risk and it looks like there’s loads of misplaced alternatives for suspense. The movie additionally borrows a tool from Michael Bay’s Ache & Acquire the place notably weird moments within the movie are actually identified with an onscreen message telling us “Sure, this actually occurred.” The system is distracting, too intelligent for its personal good, and takes us proper out of the film’s stream. I additionally really feel like Cuthbert’s character is underwritten, a standard downside in crime movies like this, the place her determination to wholeheartedly help her husband’s lifetime of crime doesn’t really feel prefer it follows from anything we’ve discovered from her to that time.
That mentioned, this film is a superb shock: a fantastic indie caper movie with some smarts and elegance. It’s a straightforward advice, and when the movie is firing on all cylinders it form of performs like a poor man’s Wolf of Wall Road: a seductive and charming legal giving us a first-hand account of his personal profession on his personal phrases.
3 ½ out of 5 stars.
* * * * *
Produced by Eric Gozlan, Jordan Yale Levine, Jordan Beckerman
Written by Kraig Wenman
Primarily based on The Flying Bandit by Robert Knuckle
Directed by Allan Ungar
Starring Josh Duhamel, Mel Gibson,
Elisha Cuthbert, Nestor Carbonell