Daily News header

Takers Film Review

By     get stories by email

T.I. Masterminds "One Last Heist" in Flashy Crime Caper

The "One Last Big Heist" is a theme of the crime caper genre which has proven to be quite popular over the years. Takers employs that tried and true formula in entertaining fashion, recycling vaguely familiar scenes from the likes of The Italian Job, Ocean's 11, True Romance, District B-13 and, perhaps most obviously, Heat.

When such a cobbling of stock elements creates a uniquely compelling adventure, it's generally referred to as an homage. But if the movie merely seems like a shameless rehash of other picture's greatest moments, we tend to dismiss it as an unworthy rip-off. Takers teeters precariously on the dividing line between hit and miss, belatedly getting around to offering just enough edge of your seat excitement to make you stop wondering where you might have seen this or that bit before.

Set in Los Angeles and directed by John Luessenhop (Lockdown), the film features a talented ensemble headed by recently-paroled rap star T.I. who is typecast as Ghost, a recently-paroled ex-con. Chris Brown co-stars, but not as a guy who beat up his girlfriend, although his best scene is a great escape where he runs for his life from guys angrier than Rihanna's big brothers.

As the film unfolds, we are treated to the sight a smoothly-executed bank robbery which nets the gang (Brown, Idris Elba, Paul Walker, Michael Ealy and Hayden Christensen) a cool $2 million. However, before they even have a chance to divvy up the take, who should show up unexpectedly, but their former partner in crime, Ghost, looking something like a, er, well, like someone who just rose from the dead.

He's inclined to overlook the fact that he was dumped for pal Jake (Ealy) by impatient girlfriend (Zoe Saldana) while he was up the river, so long as the boys are willing to let him mastermind an armored car robbery five days from now. They agree, even though it involves breaking an unwritten rule calling for a year off between burglaries. Several slightly-developed subplots supply the rationale for this deviation from the norm, such as Gordon's (Elba) desperately needing more cash to move his substance-abusing sister (Marianne Jean-Baptiste) from a rehab center to the Caribbean.

The deliberate pace finally speeds up after we've become acquainted with each of the guys. That's because the LAPD officers (Matt Dillon and Jay Hernandez) keeping the crew under surveillance spring into action after uncovering evidence proof of felonious intent.

Fair warning: the highly-stylized romp which ensues revolves more around visually-captivating detonations, chase scene and fight sequences than around the sort of cerebral fare one ordinarily associates with a cat-and-mouse affair. Mindless mayhem perfect for fans of pyrotechnics for pyrotechnics sake.

Good (2 stars)

Rated PG-13 for sexuality, profanity, graphic violence and partial nudity.

Running time: 107 Minutes

Distributor: Screen Gems

To see a trailer for Takers, visit:

Kam Williams is a syndicated film and book critic who writes for 100+ publications. He is a member of the New York Film Critics Online, the African-American Film Critics Association, and the NAACP Image Awards Nominating Committee. Contact him through NewsBlaze.

  Please click this get stories by email button to be notified about future stories, and please leave a comment below.

  Please leave a comment here     If it does not display within 10 seconds, please refresh the page

Related Movie Reviews News

Kenneth Feinberg's law firm, which had previously handled the distribution of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, was retained at a rate of $850,000/month to handle the BP one also. Although the TV commercials running in the company's hig
Kam Williams says Burns was the director, producer, co-writer, chief cinematographer, music director and executive producer of the landmark television series THE CIVIL WAR.
Prairie Miller stopped by to talk to UK British primatologist, ethologist, anthropologist, and Disneynature Ambassador, Jane Goodall about Bears as well her longstanding concern and caring for endangered animals in their natural habitats
Kam Williams presents his top 10 DVD List for April 15, 2014, including Double Indemnity, Touch of Evil, Jan Svankmajer's Alice and Midsomer Murders: Village Case Files
Movie reviewer Kam Williams reviews the Documentary Film 'The Address'. Williams gives the documentary 4 stars and says it is a current-day, Ken Burns PBS production every bit as moving as any of his nostalgic classics.
Movie reviewer Kam Williams interviews actor Marlon Wayans about his new movie, A Haunted House 2 and shares it with NewsBlaze readers around the world.

 

NewsBlaze Writers Of The Month



Popular Stories This Month

newsletter logo

NewsBlaze
Copyright © 2004-2014 NewsBlaze Pty. Ltd.
Use of this website is subject to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy  | DMCA Notice               Press Room   |    Visit NewsBlaze Mobile Site