Bandit – Movie Review
Director: Allan Ungar
Writer: Kraig Wenman (Screenplay)
Writer: Robert Knuckle (Book)
- Josh Duhamel (Love Simon)
- Elisha Cuthbert (The Cellar)
- Nestor Carbonell (The Dark Knight)
- Mel Gibson (Hot Seat)
- Olivia d’Abo (Lost Girls: Angie’s Story)
Plot: After escaping a Michigan prison, a charming career criminal assumes a new identity in Canada and goes on to rob a record 59 banks and jewellery stores while being hunted by a police task force. Based on the story of The Flying Bandit.
Runtime: 2 Hours 6 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Story: Bandit starts as we see how Gilbert Galvan Jr (Duhamel) operates his bank robberies. He has committed 59 bank and jewellery stores. This takes us back to his early career as he escapes from prison and tries to find honest work.
When this doesn’t work, Gilbert sees his chance to start robbing banks. He creates disguises and operates in a calm manner, politely asking the tellers for the money. We follow how Gilbert climbed the ladder, while Snydes (Carbonell) chases him down.
Verdict on Bandit
Gilbert Galvan Jr has been robbing banks across Canada, he has been getting away with it for over a year. Using his calm approach to getting the robberies done. He has a plan to make enough to retire to a beach bar. Gilbert uses an alias of Robert and makes sure he never hurts a single person during his robbery.
Andrea is Gilbert’s wife who met him during his first escape from prison. She believes his story about trying to build his life and starts a family with him, never knowing his true identity.
Snydes is a detective that has been investigating Tommy and fast on the heels of Gilbert. He puts his own career on the line in his investigation, knowing he needs to stop him but can’t find the evidence to catch him.
Tommy is an organised criminal boss in the area. Gilbert turns to him for help making the robberies happen, with the two becoming friends along the way. He has been escaping capture with his legit business, as Snydes lurks around him.
Josh Duhamel brings plenty of charisma to the leading role, showing his characters charming side through life. He has the confidence to show easily he got away with things for so long.
Nestor Carbonell is great to watch as the detective desperate to bring down Gilbert. He shows how much this has taken out of his character and how much he puts into stopping him.
Elisha Cuthbert and Mel Gibson complete the main supporting cast, where they are both strong with their scenes. They both bring something different to the table for Gilbert’s character to interact with.
The story follows a true story about a bank robber who completed 59 jobs across Canada before finally getting caught. This shows how he operated and tried to balance a personal life on the side.
The best way to describe this story is, a not-so-flashy ‘Catch Me If You Can’. This is because we see the hunt and how he kept getting away, while always knowing he would have got caught by the end.
Everything is told in a fun style, one that keeps everything relaxed and without showing any threatening material, which can be seen in many other bank robbery movies. The biggest weakness in the story comes from showing Gilbert as a good guy, while Snydes is seen as a bad guy for just trying to stop the robberies from happening.
Bandit is a crime thriller following the bank robberies of Gilbert Galvan Jr across Canada. In here we see how he operated, prepared, and calmly completed the jobs with disguises. It ticks all the boxes for a bank robber movie, without getting flashy like the modern ones do. The 1980s setting helps and looks complete for the most part, which showed a different time for dealing with robbers and not hurting anyone involved.
Final Thoughts – Bandit is a slick, fun true-life crime tale.