The Italian Job

June 24, 2012 - Think The Fast and the Furious but with Mini Coopers and that's a lot of what you get in this action-packed crime caper from 2003, based on the original 1969 film starring Michael Caine. The all-star cast includes Mark Wahlberg, Charlize Theron, Edward Norton, Donald Sutherland, Mos Def, Seth Green and Jason Statham along with a colorful fleet of Mini Coopers.

The movie opens in Venice where master thief Charlie (Wahlberg) and his crew are carrying out an intricately planned heist of millions of dollars in gold bars. Of course, all that gold is no good if you can't get it out of the safe. That's where John (Sutherland) comes in. The operation goes as planned, including a high-speed boat chase through the canals of Venice, and the crew makes a clean getaway. Soon after that, though, things go wrong. One of the crew, Steve (Norton), had his own plan to steal the stolen gold and keep it for himself. John gets killed and Charlie and the rest of the crew are pissed.

A year later, Charlie has finally gotten a lead on Steve and the gold. But, in order to get it back, his crew needs a safecracker. Who better than John's daughter, Stella (Theron)? She's beautiful and brilliant and uses her safecracking talents for good. But, she's willing to break the law if it means getting revenge for her daddy's murder.

Overall review: *** A fairly predictable movie, but the scenery is good and the manner in which the heists are carried out is inventive. The action, though, is the real star here. It seems that someone is always being chased or practicing what to do during a chase. The stunts are impressive and help to elevate a film that would, otherwise, be just so-so.