Be it a lone gunman taking his last chance or a labyrinthine plot involving dozens of hardened criminals, the bank robbery has long been a cinematic staple and has provided us with some incredibly tense and enjoyable movie moments.
To usher in the latest heist-gone-wrong movie (30 Minutes or Less which is released today on Blu-ray and DVD) we have two treats in store – an exclusive clip from the film to get you in the mood and then we take a look at five movie robberies which, like that of Ruben Fleischer’s film, don’t go exactly to plan..
Here’s our review of 30 Minutes or Less, and the exclusive clip looks a lot like this…
1. The Killing/Reservoir Dogs
Kubrick’s early film shows signs of the genius which would emerge and the story of one last job gone wrong is a true staple of the crime genre but both Kubrick and Tarantino (who has referred to The Killing has being a significant influence, along with Ringo Lam’s City on Fire, on his first film) eschew convention and give us something truly special. These two early films from the directors set the tone for what was to follow and though they were both surpassed by their subsequent films there is a purity to these films which show an eager mind and a furious talent at play for the first time.
2. The Great Muppet Caper
A globe-trotting, diamond-hunting epic with the Muppets and their usual host of celebrity cameos; this 1981 movie is an absolute joy. Twin reporters Fozzie and Kermit (see it, it’ll make sense – and terrify you slightly) are on the case of a jewel thief which brings our furry friends over to London for an excellent moment with John Cleese and then, with the help of the gang, some karate chopping fun from Piggy good prevails over evil. If you’ve not seen it now’s the time, mere days before The Muppets are hurled once again towards an expectant public.
3. Small Times Crooks
One of Woody Allen’s later, funnier ones this film sees the director on fine form as a member of group of crooks who come up with the ingenious idea of taking over a restaurant next to a bank in order to tunnel underneath to the vault. Allen’s hapless criminal has his girlfriend sell cookies at the restaurant to provide the necessary cover while the tunnelling work continues below. The only problem is that they are far better bakers than crooks so while the robbery fails miserably their cookie business thrives, making them a mint. Worth checking out for Tracy Ullman and Hugh Grant being a bit of a git.
4. The Wrong Trousers
Aardman’s animated triumph is almost twenty years old and yet it hasn’t appeared to age at all with the oft-told tale of a diamond-hungry penguin pitting his wits against a dog with a pair of pneumatic trousers enduring to the point becoming the definitive version. Nick Park’s creations are wonderfully rendered with Feathers McGraw looking every bit the iconic evil penguin he is, and the invention and detail here are a joy to watch. With a museum bound diamond the focus of the bird’s machinations our heroes are the only ones in movie history to bring a rolling-pin to a gun fight and emerge victorious.
Auguste le Breton’s novel was wonderfully adapted by Jules Dassin in 1955 with an expertly staged and shot heist scene being the beginning of the end for the criminal gang involved. Diamonds against are the focus here and once the jewelry shop is hit and the loot taken it is the in-fighting and betrayal within the group which proves the downfall of all. Kidnap, drug-fuelled revenge and murder by the dozen this film is well worth catching up with as the successful robbery lights the touch-paper for a brutal fallout.