Clive Owen Weekend – Inside Man (2006)

logoDirector: Spike Lee

Writer: Russell Gewirtz (Screenplay)

Starring: Denzel Washington, Clive Owen, Jodie Foster, Christopher Plummer, Willem Dafoe, Chiwetel Ejiofor

Plot: A police detective, a bank robber, and a high-power broker enter high-stakes negotiations after the criminal’s brilliant heist spirals into a hostage situation.

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

Verdict: The Best Modern Heist Film

Story: Inside Man starts with Dalton Russell (Owen) who explains the perfect bank robbery from inside a cell. We see how Dalton and his team start their robbery before meeting Detective Frazier (Washington) who has personal and profession problems and his partner Detective Mitchell (Ejiofor). The pair end up getting the call on the hostage situation.

The bank just so happens to be owned by Arthur Case (Plummer) who is worried when he hears about which bank it is. Cue the flash forwards to all the hostages getting interviewed by the police. Arthur calls Madeleine White (Foster) and lady who has the ability to deal with delicate situations and retrieve a certain item.

What follows is the plan unfolding but just who is behind it all is up to the police to discover as each hostage is a suspect. The other question remains what were they after?

Inside Man is a heist film that doesn’t end up making either the robbers or the cops the villains and both do come off as heroes, out villain is a banker showing the feelings we have about them in real life. The film has one of the best twists on the bank robbery genre and you literally don’t know what will happen. I personally didn’t like the flash forward but I did understand that it was needed. I think this could easily be up there with the best heist movies ever but seems to have got forgotten at that level. (8/10)

Actor Review

Denzel Washington: Detective Keith Frazier is the lead on the hostage situation, he has been getting framed in the work and this case is a chance to redeem himself. He tries to let the robbers make the first move but only finds himself being played. He ends up stepping in to make things happen but he just can’t work out who was involved in the robbery. Denzel does a good job in this role without really excelling. (7/10)frazier

Clive Owen: Dalton Russell is the mastermind behind the robbery, he seems to keep calm through every situation, he enjoys playing his cat and mouse battle where he ends up gloating about the outcome from the opening scene. Clive does a good job showing he can go against the biggest names in Hollywood. (8/10)dalton

Jodie Foster: Madeleine White is the professional problem solver who gets called into retrieve an item from inside the bank for the owner, she uses all her skills to get close to the case showing she always thinks she is ready to out smart whoever he meets. Jodie does a good job in a role you wouldn’t expect from her. (7/10)maddy

Christopher Plummer: Arthur Case is the owner of the bank who has a secret locked up in the bank, one he doesn’t want coming out leaving him to called Madeleine to solve his problem. Christopher gives us the standard performance in a villainous role. (6/10)arthur

Support Cast: Inside Man has a large supporting cast that includes many hostages along with small supporting roles from bigger name stars.

Director Review: Spike Lee Spike does give us a good heist film that still ends up putting his own messages in the film. (7/10)

Crime: Inside Man brings us an all new look at the heist genre which should be one of the most popular of recent times. (8/10)

Mystery: Inside Man does keep you guessing to what will happen by the end of the film. (8/10)

Thriller: Inside Man brings you to the edge of your seat from the moment the robbery starts. (8/10)

Settings: Inside Man keeps the setting easy to keep on top of because it stays mostly inside the bank and just outside. (9/10)

Suggestion: Inside Man is a film I think everyone should see at least one time in their life. (Watch)

Best Part: Dalton giving away his exit and following it up.

Worst Part: Goes on a bit after the robbery is complete.

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $88 Million

Budget: $45 Million

Runtime: 2 Hour 9 Minutes

Tagline: It looked like the perfect bank robbery. But you can’t judge a crime by its cover.

Overall: The best modern heist movie

Rating 80


  1. Great review, Darren. This is in my top five heist movies. I think you’re right that it commonly gets overlooked. Everyone in the cast does a great job and the story is phenomenal. There isn’t much here not to like.

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