A good cast does its best to make Armored
roll, but while this heist flick certainly has its moments, it's ultimately arrested by a predictable story, cliché-ridden dialogue, and ham-fisted direction. Matt Dillon plays Mike, the leader of a sextet of guards working for an armored truck company; other members of the team are portrayed by Laurence Fishburne, Jean Reno, Skeet Ulrich, and Amaury Nolasco, but the key is newcomer Ty (Columbus Short), an Iraq War veteran whose parents have both died, leaving Ty to support his troubled younger brother and somehow pay the mortgage on the home their folks left behind. When Mike and the others cook up a scheme to steal a cool $42 million on their next delivery and then claim they were hijacked, Ty is dead set against it--until he goes home and is greeted by a child-welfare official who threatens to put his brother into foster care unless Ty can prove himself capable of looking after the kid (this is but one of the handy plot conveniences designed to push the story forward). Predictability is one thing, but director Nimrod Antal and screenwriter James V. Simpson's setups are so on-the-nose that Helen Keller could see what's coming ("Promise me nobody gets hurt," Ty says to Mike, which guarantees that the body count will start to mount almost instantly). Armored
has some good action sequences, a gritty look, a couple of welcome surprises, and the occasional tense moment. But when the great heist movies are recalled, from Topkapi
to Sexy Beast
, this one is unlikely to be among them. --Sam Graham Stills from Armored (Click for larger image)
A crew of officers at an armored transport security firm risk their lives when they embark on the ultimate heist.against their own company. Armed with a seemingly fool-proof plan, the men plan on making off with a fortune with harm to none. But when an unexpected witness interferes, the plan quickly unravels and all bets are off.