Movie Review: Thick as Thieves (2009)
“Never trust a thief.”
Thick as Thieves (2009)
Director: Mimi Leder
Cast: Morgan Freeman, Antonio Banderas, Robert Forster
Synopsis: A veteran thief and his younger accomplice attempt to steal a fabled Faberge egg to pay off a debt to the Russian mob.
Thick as Thieves is improbable in every way possible. Morgan Freeman (Now You See Me 2, Ben-Hur) plays Ripley, a jewel thief who takes brash young thief Gabriel (Antonio Banderas – Haywire, Machete Kills) under his wing to help him steal a couple of mythical Faberge eggs nestled in the high-security vault of Romanov’s. These eggs are mythical because only a select few people know whether they actually exist or not (hear that? The flapping of wings? That’s reality flying out the window).
Ripley tells Gabriel that his motive for stealing the egg is a debt owed to a Russian gangster, which is plausible enough until you see the kind of equipment he has in his converted loft warehouse. We’re not talking a rope ladder and stethoscope here, we’re talking state-of-the-art high tech that would probably pay his debt to the Russian five times over. As part of their preparation, they have to get inside Romanov’s so that they can plant a spycam on one of the store’s officials who has access to the vaults so that they can learn the security measures necessary to open it. This would be difficult enough, but our two anti-heroes decide to case the joint during a gala in honour of the city’s police force so all the top brass are there. Now, I’m no criminal, but I know that anyone planning a heist would abandon their plan the moment they discovered the law suspected something was going on – they definitely wouldn’t invite suspicion by turning up at a police function disguised as a cop…
The film doesn’t just fall down on the plot points – even though these are enough to condemn it to the bargain bin. What also rankles are stupid decisions made by the filmmakers. Why, for example, after Freeman picks Banderas up from the older man’s niece’s flat, does the following conversation between them take place on a nameless rooftop? I’ll tell you why – because the director thought it would look cool, the two of them looking over the cityscape. They don’t have that pressing conversation in the car, or in Gabriel’s flat, or in Ripley”s vast warehouse, they have it on a roof. A roof which just happens to have one table and two chairs on it…
This film’s bad enough to make you angry…
(Reviewed 26th November 2011)