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Inside Man - One Minute Revew

Slick. That is the word to describe this movie. At the outset, the movie is about bank robbery. The movie features a somewhat intelligent plot that covers the basics of heist genre, though it isn't the plot we're interested in. A gang of robbers take on a bank in Manhattan, hold it's clients hostages and ask for a plane to escape. We've heard it all before, and know that it isn't the way the story is going to unfold. Well, the progress of the screenplay doesn't throw much shocks or surprises, but it's all done very affably that you can't suppress having a smile for most of the running length. Take this dialogue exchange between the chief negotiator and the chief robber for example:
Cop: Don't say proposal, see, my girlfriend wants to get married.
Robber: What, you think you're too young to get married?
Cop: No, just too broke. Maybe I should rob a bank.
Robber: Do you love her?
Cop: Yes.
Robber: Then money shouldn't matter.

For a crime thriller, this movie has more than it's share of humour. With stars like Denzel Washington, Clive Owen and Jodie Foster in front of the camera and the magnificent Spike Lee co-ordinating from behind the camera, you can take it for granted that there can be no false dialogue deliveries or fake expressions. In a classic cool scene, the robber asks one of his hostages, a young boy, about the video game he's playing. When he explains the objective of the game (Grand Auto Theft?), he ruminates for a moment and says "I'm going to talk to your dad about this game". The respectable Christopher Plummer plays a very dignified cameo as the chairman of the bank trying to protect a haunting past. Matthew Libatique, the photographer is just spot on - with so many symmetric shots and a fine balance of colours, it's a pleasure to see the scenes flow. Russell Gewirtz has done a commendable job writing the screenplay - the compliment is not for his plot (which is interesting, though, has a few logical fallacies) but for treating the audience to a fine entertainer. This could have been much more, but I'm not complaining.

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2 Responses to “Inside Man - One Minute Revew”

  1. # Anonymous shreeja

    Late review, this one. But hey I'm commenting -
    Sharp-witted!!
    And the movie opening with rahman's chaiyya chaiyya was great (well ok that's least of your concerns, I know) ;)  

  2. # Blogger Prasad Venkataramana

    Shreeja,
    For non-Indians, or to be precise, for those who haven't heard 'Chaiyya', the song could have set their foot tapping, head shaking and helped them glide into the tone of the movie. For me, and for most of the Indian audience I guess, the song should have evoked images that might have only emphasized the disconnect between the visuals (Manhattan street, statues, etc) and the songs.  

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