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The Italian Job [Blu-ray]
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Mark Wahlberg stars as Charlie, acting head of a gang of high-tech, high class thieves. He's taking over for his mentor (played by the always welcome Donald Sutherland) as his team sets up a brilliant scheme for $35,000,000 in gold bars (the "Italian Job" of the title).
But things don't go quite as planned, and one year later Charlie reassembles his mates, plus his mentor's daughter (Charlize Theron) to take revenge on the man who betrayed them and set things right once and for all.
The action here is splendid, imaginative and well filmed. The script is tight, with plenty of snappy lines to go around (including a great running gag about just who invented Napster) and the musical score is surprisingly nice. All the actors have fun with their roles, especially Seth Green as a computer geek and Edward Norton as the slimy bad guy. And of course there's Wahlberg.
I like Mark Wahlberg. I can't help it. I like him more with every movie he makes. I like his quiet, confident walk, his little boy smile, and the way his forehead crinkles whenever somebody yells at him. He seems to actually get better looking as the movie goes along, and his chemistry with Theron is low-key but sexy.
I give "The Italian Job" five stars not because it was a masterpiece, but because I had a great time and know the film will hold up well with future viewings (it was a lot like "Ocean's Eleven" in this regard). Go on and see it; you'll like it. And probably want a Mini when you get out.
(By the way, I LOVED the way our heroes never carried guns or shot anybody. Old school baby!)
Two things raise this far above its genre: absolute super settings: a boat chase through, under, and around Venice; a set of tricked-out Mini-Cooper cars vrooming through the sewer pipes of LA like kids through a water slide. Really fine performances: Donald Sutherland as the patriarch of the thieves, Seth Green (Scott Evil from the Austin Powers movies) as the funny computer geek, and the supremely creepy Edward Norton as the villain. Only Mark Wahlberg fails to project much of a personality.
The thing I appreciated most is that none of the action was faked by computer: it's just good old-fashioned stunt-driving. It's really pretty impressive (it's 'actually happening'); as much as you might have liked this summer's Matrix movie, this one is at least as thrilling because it's 'real.'
The cast adds immeasurably to the charm of the movie, with Donald Sutherland, Ed Norton, and several notable others lending both credence and a certain gritty feel to this tale about life on the margins, on the far side of the law. I also got the impression that given the box office success of this film; much of the crew may be back to thrill us again in an inevitable sequel. I am up for it. After all, given the aplomb and cool they displayed in driving a trio of Metros through the streets, sewers, and tunnels of Los Angeles at rush hour, and added into this mix was a certain level of style and intelligence often missing in such caper flicks, it would be fun to consider a series of such films. Compared to other recent offerings at the theater, which have by and large been disappointing affairs indeed, it would be a relief to consider more caper flicks like this. Enjoy!
The stage is set at Venice and the target is thirty-five million dollars worth of gold bullion. John Bridger, a master safecracker, is about to pull the last job of his career. Only this time he isn�t running the show, that responsibility has been passed on to his successor Charlie Crocker, the mastermind behind the whole scheme. Everything goes according to plan, until one of them decides to doublecross the rest of the group. Now, a year after that unfortunate incident, Charlie finally locates the traitor�s trail. He enlists the help of John�s daughter Stella, who happens to be an expert of safes and locks herself. Together with his former cohorts, they will attempt to reclaim what is rightfully theirs�, as well as exact revenge the person that betrayed them.
Admittedly the plot of The Italian Job follows the same set up as most caper films: a crew get together, then comes the obligatory introduction of the important players, with the explanation, the preparation and finally the completion of the heist. Despite the formulaic scenario, director Gray�s execution was so energetic and thrilling that such contrivance can be easily overlooked. There were a couple of story elements that were never fully explained to my satisfaction. Even so, these irritations did not dampen my enjoyment for the film.
�There are two kinds of thieves in the world: ones that steal to enrich their lives, and ones that steal to define their lives.�
Mark Wahlberg is likeable enough as the main character Charlie, but lacks the charisma to carry the movie himself. Luckily, the rest of the cast was more than capable of picking up the slack.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
If you want to watch that famous scene of that mini cooper doing it's thing like what pit's supposed to do. This is the best movie for you.Published 14 days ago by charles05
One of my favorites. Love Donald Sutherland & Edward Norton & Charlize Theron - great cast, action, clever, on the edge of your seat most of the time.Published 1 month ago by imawareru
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