OCEAN’S 8 opens this Friday. I haven’t been invited to a screening and I have heard zero buzz on it. I love the cast so I’m staying hopeful.
However, if it all goes pear shaped, here is a list of heist movies from the past decade. Have a few of them on-hand in case you need that heist film itch scratched and OCEAN’S turns out to be a disappointment.
12 Heist Movies of the Past 10 Years Worth Watching, Especially if OCEAN’S 8 Turns Out to Not Be So Good But You Want to See a Good Heist Movie
1.) Ant-Man- Super hero movie meets heist movie with the wildly likable Paul Rudd at the center and Michael Pena acting as the scene stealer as Rudd’s not so ex-con buddy.
2.) Baby Driver- A great soundtrack, excellent stunt driving, and a raft of strong performances. The only reason I’d wave you off is if you just can’t handle seeing Kevin Spacey on-screen after the revelations of last year.
3.) The Bank Job- If you think Jason Statham is nothing but an action machine…well, first, go watch SPY where he shows he has great comedic chops. Second, come back here and snag THE BANK JOB. A thoughtful action-light heist movie that features Statham showing off his acting chops instead of just his insane physical skills. It isn’t a ground-breaking entry in the genre. Nonetheless, it is solid, smart, and well-told.
4.) Fast Five- Every bit as dumb as you’d expect from a heist movie in the FAST franchise, it is nonetheless incredibly compelling. The “drag a safe through downtown” scene is definitely the showcase but nearly every moment is a thrill.
5.) Hell or High Water- A heist movie that captures the financial situation of much of small town America without being a message movie. Lyrical but still delivering action thrills. A drama with great humor to it. HELL got painted by many when it came out for being a movie for red America. That’s wrong as hell. It’s just a damn good movie for everyone.
6.) Inception- While this may not initially register as a heist movie due to its sci-fi leanings and spectacular manipulations of the physical world, it absolutely is. Easily the most unusual and groundbreaking of the heist movies on this list and definitely a must-see, in my opinion.
7.) JCVD- Meta and surprisingly bittersweet, JCVD is perhaps the best Van Damme movie since TIMECOP and for sure the best of his post-golden age.
8.) and 9.) Now You See Me, Now You See Me 2 (should be know as Now You Don’t)- Magic tricks might as well be literal magic as a team of magicians and illusionists plan and pull off increasingly wild and unlikely heists. It plays like egomaniacal Robin Hoods who love the spotlight too much to just get away with their crimes. Plenty people hate it for being dumb and not treating “magic” realistically, but that’s what recommends it in my opinion.
10.) Taking of Pelham 123- The original is better, no doubt. But this remake has Denzel Washington dulling his chemistry (but still shining!) as a workaday schlub, John Travolta as a motor mouthed villain (and we all know Travolta is never better than as a villain), and was directed by Tony Scott. It is the kind of heist movie that you’ll catch while channel surfing and next thing you know you are laying on the couch as the credits roll, comfy and having enjoyed it thoroughly.
11.) The Town- Speaking of THE TOWN, here it is. Jeremy Renner and Jon Hamm steal the show as a volatile criminal and an overmatched but dogged FBI agent, respectively. However, the rest of the players, including director Ben Afflect, are great too. The movie is tense, well-directed, well-acted, and nicely evokes the feel of Boston in a way that feel authentic without being pandering.
12.) What Doesn’t Kill You- A small little seen movie with a surprisingly killer cast. Set in Southie, it’s THE TOWN with less fireworks, more bruising emotional interactions.