“Friday 5.01PM… Bank Robbery In Progress… Nothing Is What It Seems.”
Director: K. C. Bascombe
Cast: Tom Sizemore, Sherilyn Fenn, Dave Foley
Synopsis: Four thieves attempt to make the richest score in history.
$windle is a pretty good time-filler for a film that nobody has ever heard of. I liked Tom Sizemore’s performance: totally convincing as an edgy cop working deep undercover, he pretty much carried the film although everybody else was OK, too. Probably the only flaw is that we’ve seen it all before. And I don’t just mean the story, I mean the direction too. In fact, as I was watching, I thought to myself ‘I bet this is a first — or near-first — time director,’ and then I thought ‘I bet the director is also the writer.’ I was right on both counts, not because I’m particularly perceptive, but simply because K. C. Bascombe, while fashioning an entertaining enough tale, appears to have drawn up a list of every stock character and situation from the annals of crime-movie history and found a way to shoe-horn them into his film. Likewise with the direction: the influences are too numerous to mention and too numerous to ignore — and that protracted scene around the table as the robbery was planned was positively irritating. The camera repeatedly tracked behind the person sitting opposite the person talking and then re-appeared to show someone else sitting in front of it. That’s a neat enough trick when it’s done once or twice, but half-a-dozen times or more and it really starts to grate.
These are really pretty minor gripes, though. The film clips along, flitting back-and-forth to alternate scenes of the robbery with scenes of how Sizemore’s character became involved with the gang. Some of the writing is really quite good, but then sometimes it is fairly poor (the scene where Sizemore deliberately sets out to make Fenn laugh — probably one of the hardest types of conversation to write successfully – springs to mind). But if you’re in an undemanding mood this will keep you quiet for an hour or two.