Den of Thieves (2018)

Director: Christian Gudegast

Writer: Christian Gudegast (Screenplay) Christian Gudegast, Paul Scheuring (Story)

Starring: Gerard Butler, Pablo Schreiber, O’Shea Jackson Jr, 50 Cent, Meadow Williams, Maurice Compte, Brian Van Holt

 

Plot: A gritty crime saga which follows the lives of an elite unit of the LA County Sheriff’s Dept. and the state’s most successful bank robbery crew as the outlaws plan a seemingly impossible heist on the Federal Reserve Bank.

 

Runtime: 2 Hours 20 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Gritty Heist Movie

 

Story: Den of Thieves starts as we see how Merrimen (Schreiber) operates with his team, second in command Enson (50 Cent) and new comer driver Donnie Wilson (Jackson Jr) as they pull off their latest job, investigating this is major crimes officer Big Nick O’Brien (Butler) and his team, they don’t take prisoners, they take bodies.

After the opening heist the two sides know their enemy and Nick brings Donnie in to bring in to learn the plan, while Merrimen is planning the biggest heist ever heard off, the Federal Reserve Bank, will they manage to pull this off.

 

Thoughts on Den of Thieves

 

Characters – Big Nick is the leader of a major crime unit that is suffering with his own addiction, he goes outside the law to get answers and never plays by the rules, he is a good leader and seems to be the only cop in town that can think outside the box. Ray Merrimen is the leader of the heist team, former marine and prisoner that plans his heist down to perfection with his team, he will not go down without swinging. Donnie is the newest member of the team, hired for his driving skills, that he gets forced to work both sides by Big Nick or face jail for a third time.

PerformancesGerard Butler is on fine form here, this could easily be his best performance in years, yes this isn’t anything he can’t handle, but still he knows how to handle it. Pablo Schreiber is an actor I hadn’t heard off before, he does a good job opposite Butler, but his performance does feel like he needs to be a strong member of a team over the leader. O’Shea Jackson Jr is good in his role showing that he is going to be a name for years to come.

StoryThe story follows both sides of the law, the team preparing the heist and the police trying to figure out what the next target is. This work because we get to see both mindsets, but as both sides of the law are being painted as bad guy it makes it hard to support either side of them and this is affected with the opening sequence too. The twists that come in the story are going to be something that are not going to be too difficult to point out. This does however become an entertaining viewing experience.

Action/Crime/MysteryThe action sequences are very good, even if they are mostly big gun battles in the busy streets. The crime side of the film is how the heist unfolds which does help with the mystery side of the film as we see how it all unfolds.

SettingsLA is the setting, which is meant to have the highest bank robbery rating in the country, this works for the busy streets and divide between the sides of the city.

Special EffectsThe effects are very good when it comes to showing off the bullet effects which are brutal as you could imagine.


Scene of the Movie –
The final heist, it might be long, but it is edge of you seat.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The opening sequence ruins us caring about the thieves.

Final ThoughtsThis is a good gritty heist movie, it rolls past with an over two hour run time and keeps us guessing until the final scene.

 

Overall: Great action crime movie.

Rating

 

 

London Has Fallen (2016)

london has fallenDirector: Babak Najafi

Writer: Creighton Rothenberger, Katrin Benedikt, Christian Gudegast, Chad St John (Screenplay) Creighton Rothenberger, Katrin Benedikt (Story)

Starring: Gerard Butler, Aaron Eckhart, Angela Bassett, Radha Mitchell, Jackie Earle Haley, Melissa Leo, Morgan Freeman

 

Plot: In London for the Prime Minister’s funeral, Mike Banning discovers a plot to assassinate all the attending world leaders.

 

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: 24 The Movie

 

Story: London Has Fallen starts in Pakistan as we learn that the terrorist movement has grown and the terrorists are planning their next move before being taken out. Move back to meet President Asher (Eckhart) and his chief bodyguard Mike Banning (Butler) as best friends.

When the British Prime Minster dies of natural courses all of the world leaders are heading to London for the funeral including Asher, Mike has to work on the security detail for his best friend.

With the begins of the funeral starting to take place all the world’s leaders have been targeted by a group of terrorists leaving many of them dead. Aamir Barkawi (Aboutboul) is the man behind the attack and al he wants is the President leaving VP Trumbull (Freeman) running the cabinet while Mike has to keep the President alive.

London Has Fallen is a sequel that really has nothing to do with the original other than bring back the characters from the original. The only thing that seems familiar is that we have a foreign terrorist. While watching all I could feel was this is how a 24 movie would go with the one man that will do anything to save president doing that to save him. I do feel it is an easy watch for all the fans out there who want an action film. In the end this is pretty much a standard action film with nothing overly special going on.

 

Actor Review

 

Gerard Butler: Mike Banning is the most trust bodyguard and head of security for the President, he has to travel to London for a state funeral only to discover that he is going to have to race to save the president one more time. Gerard is solid as the action hero but isn’t as strong as he should be.mike

Aaron Eckhart: Benjamin Asher is the President of the United States of America he has to travel to England for the funeral of the Prime Minster which turns into a trap as he must follow Banning to safety against a man who wants him dead. Aaron is basic in this role which I would have liked to see a lot more from him instead of being the almost damsel in distress.president

Morgan Freeman: VP Trumbull is left back home in America and when the attack happens he must work with the rest of the office to make the difficult decisions, to help the President or save the people. Morgan is basic supporting performance without doing too much.

Alon Aboutboul: Aamir Barkawi is the man behind the attacks, he has faked his death and now he uses this as his chance to get revenge on the Western world. Alon is a very generic villain without having to get his hands physical dirty.

Support Cast: London Has Fallen has a big supporting with big names doing very little.

Director Review: Babak NajafiBabak gives us certain great shots but also ends up giving us a very plain story throughout.

 

Action: London Has Fallen has plenty of mindless action sequences without being too much memorable.

Crime: London Has Fallen puts us into a terrorist world where the criminals are trying to take out the world leaders.

Thriller: London Has Fallen doesn’t really put you on edge because we know the two leads will not suffer any peril.

Settings: London Has Fallen is set in London but after the first attack nothing is truly memorable location in town.
Special Effects
: London Has Fallen has poor effects that you can see that CGI is on screen throughout.

Suggestion: London Has Fallen is one for you to switch off your brain and enjoy. (Brain Off Watching)

 

Best Part: Single take down the street.

Worst Part: CGI

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Hopefully not.

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $60 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 39 Minutes

Tagline: Prepare for bloody hell.

 

Overall: Sequel that loses the X-factor but is a simple action movie.

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