I saw this movie on Saturday with a buddy of mine and I've been meaning to review it since. Now this movie Wants to be a different movie, a movie that's already been made, a movie that is regarded as the Greatest Cops and Robbers movie ever made. This movie wants to be the 1995 film Heat, with Al Pacino and Robert De Niro.
They actually went through the effort to make Gerard Butler look like Al Pacino in this movie.
That's Al Pacino in the Film Heat
And there is Gerard Butler in Den of Thieves.
Now why they put effort into styling him to resemble Al Pacino I will never fully understand.
Now this film follows the same kind of principal of Heat, A Cop and his group are chasing a gang of extremely professional bank robbers. The Bank Robber is a former U.S Marine just like in HEAT and it focuses on both equally.
Now this film FAILS at being Heat.
First in Heat while Al Pacino's character Lt. Vincent Hanna had his share of asshole moments, he was ultimately a likable and sympathetic character.
The character of Nick in Den of Thieves? He's just an asshole plain and simple and borderline plain unlikable. From the Scene's where he antagonizes his ex wife while signing the divorce papers (which happened because he cheated on her. The cheating partner in Vincent Hanna's Marriage in heat was his wife and it leaves it ambiguous whether or not they will divorce at the end.) to torturing suspects.
Then you have the fact that Gerard Butler doesn't even come close to having the sheer Charisma of Al Pacino.
Now for the next thing, This movie advertised 50 Cent pretty hard, my best friend put it like this, 'You know for a movie that advertised 50 Cent so much the dude had less lines than his name.) and you know what he had a point, You go into this expecting that 50 Cent will be the main bank robber when instead he plays the sidekick of the main bank robber. He is really only the central focus of a couple of scenes.
Now on to the next complaint, In Heat both sides were competent, and in the End, De Niro's Neil McCauley is only caught because he abandons his rule in exchange for getting revenge on a person. The whole honor over reason.
The Reason these former marine special forces hyper-competent bank robbers get caught after robbing the federal reserve and the only reason? A traffic jam and a decision that would cost the cops in the movie their job and likely get them major prison time for severely endangering a bunch of innocent people.
Now there are good things about the movie. The action is top notch, and the movie does have funny parts. The best scene in the movie is probably the opening when the robbers steal and armored car and use their special forces weapons training to kill like a dozen cops and get away. The scene is just so well choreographed that you can't help but smile.
In the end I'd give den of thieves a 6/10