Den of Thieves, an enjoyable ride
What happened to the heist movie? Aside from the Ocean's trilogy, we've had a severe lack of good heist films. Den of Thieves tries to change that and bring back the gritty heists of the 90s in a smart, tough fashion.
Let's start with the lead of this film, O'shea Jackson Jr. He is surprisingly god in this film as the bartender/wheelman of the group. He shows that he's more than just his father's look-a-like and can hold his own against heavy hitters like Gerard Butler. It's difficult to place Butler's accent, but that's always been the case as he plays the tough, gruff, undercover agent. He does his best macho man routine, but it never comes across as such. Same goes for Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson, because other than looking big, he doesn't give the same performance as Jackson Jr. The rest of the supporting cast does its job portraying big and mean from the streets or the buff law enforcement.
What makes any heist film shine is the planning and execution of the heist itself. This film is no exception as the mark is well thought out and gives the most of the plot in a concise straight forward narrative. There's plenty of twists and turns throughout this testosterone-fueled adventure to keep you interested to the final act. Unfortunately, it does end in a basic shootout, but the lead up is well worth the journey.
O'shea Jackson Jr shines in an otherwise bland cast that feels like a played out heist film fit for the 90s. The target isn't unique, and the execution is sloppy at times, but it does get the job done in reminding that good heist films are still out there.