I'll be completely honest and just state the truth: I was convinced this movie would be a piece of crap from the minute I saw the trailer a few months back. Everything I read or heard about the premise of John Luessenhop's movie sounded too close for comfort to one of my favorite movies of all time and a true crime film classic, Michael Mann's Heat. I skipped out on watching it in theaters, and figured I'd scope it out later DVD. Well, the day arrived and I decided to approach the movie with an open mind, however hard that would be. I took comfort in the fact that Matt Dillon and Idris Elba, who did such an awesome job as Stringer Bell in The Wire, were in this. It couldn't be all that bad, now could it?
|Paul Walker and T.I. in the same movie?!? Quick, get the Oscars ready...|
While Gordon and his boys are off blowing their cash on girly drinks at a nightclub, detective Jack Wells (Matt Dillon) and his partner Eddie (Jay Hernandez) are busy beating the daylights out of drug dealers somewhere across the city. Jack, as we soon find out, is a no-frills cop with an eye for detail and a troubled family life. Jack and Eddie are assigned to investigate the bank robbery, and are initially stumped. At the same time, we see a guy named Ghost (T.I.) being released from jail and immediately looking to reunite with Gordon and his former crew.
|Cool guys don't look at explosions.|
As the team prepares themselves for the job, the detectives are hard at work trying to solve the first robbery and looking for leads. After a routine bust, Jake and Eddie find evidence linking Ghost to the Russian mob. Jake tails Ghost and eventually sees him meet with Gordon and Jesse. As Jake continues to get closer to solving the case, the day of the heist arrives and ultimately results in a hectic web of betrayal, some obvious twists, and a few genuinely interesting action set pieces.
|Matt Dillon's pimp hand is feeling mighty strong these days.|
|Let's all chill together at da club after committing some felonies, yo.|
The armored car robbery plays out like a straight rip off of the much more exciting finale in The Italian Job. Matt Dillon's detective investigating the robbery is divorced and having trouble being a good father to his daughter, just like Al Pacino's character in Heat. At the scene of the initial robbery, Jake comments on the technical proficiency of the robbers and their use of shaped charges and C4... wait for it... just as Pacino does in Heat. The lines sound almost exactly the same. The opening bank robbery is eerily similar to the Heat's famous bank robbery, even down to the guns the characters use, their outfits and the stuff they say.
I mean, even the blueish hue to the scenes is blatantly lifted from Mann's movie. Except that in Heat, it fit the minimalist, loner characterization of De Niro's role and the bleak portrayal of a decadent Los Angeles, while the guys in Takers hit up a nightclub after their heist and hook up with chicks, smoke cigars and sip scotch like a scene out of Jersey Shore. The only thing missing was for DJ Pauly D to make a cameo appearance and start bumping some beats. All flash and absolutely no dash.
|Sadly, this would only have improved this disaster of a movie.|
TL;DR - A rip off of better crime movies, but with a bad cast, bad writing and no shame whatsoever. Yes, I mad. - 2/10