June 13, 2003

The Italian Job

Pretty sure this voids your manufacturer's warranty.
Check your owner's manual for details.
If you ignore the impossibility of carrying $27 million in gold in three Mini Coopers, you'll have fun in this slick, easygoing caper.

Theater Note: This was my last-time-ever visit to Showcase Cinemas Revere. My friend Paris and I had to leave the screening 5 minutes into the film, because a group of young women would not stop talking. When I loudly shushed them, the alpha dog replied "Don't you be shushin' me!" Of course, in a world where justice prevails, they'd be the ones who'd be forced to leave. Instead, Paris and I walked out, complained at the service desk, and got tickets for the next show. Unfortunately, the next screening was at 12:55 a.m., so we were at the theater into the wee hours of the dawn. Never again!

Nine Years Later: 2012 DVD Re-Review: I've seen bits and pieces of this movie on cable (it's the new Shawshank Redemption of basic cable), and enjoyed the empty calories, so I bought it at a yard sale for a dollar. Still a fun, slick, and inconsequential ride. Tight script, with a nice twist at the end of the second act, and the threat of the third party (Ukranian mobsters) was well crafted- similar to the presence of the FBI in The Sting.
I was surprised how mild the movie was. It's a PG-13 movie, so the language is required to be soft, but there's also very little violence. Two men get shot, but there's no blood. Also, happy to see no sex scene with Charlize Theron. She's in her underwear twice, both totally gratuitously, but no sex. I appreciated that Jason Statham's "Handsome Rob" does not sexualize her- instead, he doesn't trust her on the team from the very beginning, which was a nice reversal.Two Thursday-night comedy actors in bit parts: Scott Adsit (30 Rock) as a broke actor prepping for an audition while waiting for a red light; and Oscar Nunez (The Office) in a non-comedic role as a security guard.
The other impossibility? Surviving the truck crash into freezing water. There is zero chance of our gang staying submerged for a minute or two in that water, crawling out onto the shore, hitching a ride, and NOT dying of hypothermia. Didn't we all just see Titanic?
The music score is very turn-of-the-millennium. I was also amused at the title sequence- weren't title sequences passe even in 2003?
 The Italian Job official website is still live, and worth a peek for the 2003 nostalgia value. Also available as a No-Flash Version.