Takers is another heist movie, revolving around a group of thieves/BFFs who do jobs every few years. Other hobbies of theirs include wearing suits 24/7 and drinking scotch. All the time. The murder to whiskey ratio of this movie is pretty balanced, I’d say. Anyway, one of their previous heists ended poorly for one of their comrades, Ghost. Ghost is left bleeding out on a fire escape, gets caught, goes to jail and does not pass go or collect $200. Takers is about what happens once Ghost gets out of jail with a proposition for the regular crew: one big, last job that’ll set them up for life. They intend on knocking over (metaphorically and literally) an armored car. While I know you’re shocked at how original and unique this plot is, just wait, because you ain’t seen nothin’ yet! Just kidding, it’s all very generic and cliche. Takers is dangerously thin on plot, with most of the movie following Detective Jack Welles (Matt Dillon) looking confused.
Takers has a serious problem with how the film is paced. Since the entire movie is building up to the final armored car job, the middle seems to drag on and on while Welles runs around trying to figure out the criminal’s plans. Since the audience knows what’s going to happen, it just leaves you kind of bored. Considering that the target audience was more than likely young teen boys, I’m surprised they even put time into the plot. There were side stories with the characters, such as Gordan (Idris Elba) having a junkie sister, except she only distracts from the main plot. Like most of the other side stories, you really don’t care and they aren’t even necessary. Why include them? It creates no further attachment or empathy with the characters; it’s honestly annoying. Another sad side plot was Zoe Saldana, who plays the fiance of Jesse (Chris Brown). First of all, who’s going to make the first joke?…Ok, I’ll do it! Poor Zoe, already having the dangerous job of being Chris Brown’s girlfriend, hardly gets any screen time. She’s literally in the movie to stand around for about 8 minutes and then die. Spoilers. Muahahahahaha!
The acting in Takers is a bit of a mixed bag. On one hand, you’ve got legitimate actors like Idris Elba and Anakin Hayden Christensen. On the other hand, you’ve got the rapper T.I. and the falling star Matt Dillon. T.I. playing Ghost was truly sigh-inspiring, combining over-the-top and ridiculous with an overdeveloped sense of being a tough guy. Not to mention, about sixty percent of his lines included such classics as “DAAMMNNNN” and “SHIIIIIIIT”. I felt pretty bad when I saw a few of the actors really putting effort into their roles, because it’s dwarfed out by the immaturity of the whole movie.
Takers does have some legitimately good action sequences, they’re not the best, but they’ll keep your interest. One scene in particular felt out of place. With all the action scenes, you could probably guess that they’re full of slow motion and guys yelling. Except, in one apartment shootout, they did the standard slo-mo, dampened all the music and sound except for a violin piece and the men yelling. The way it was put together just clashed at every level, hearing beautiful, orchestral music broken up by, “There’s a guy with a shotgun!” or “DAAAAMMMNNN!”
Unfortunately, Takers is just a dumbed down heist movie for teens. It’s not the worst movie of the summer, by any means, but with movies out there like Heat or Ocean’s Eleven, why bother to stop and watch this? Takers is a movie that can make your heart pump, but it doesn’t make your brain function. So, if you’re fourteen years old, put down Modern Warfare 2, drink a Monster and go see Takers. If you want to watch something intelligent, exciting and well done, you should go elsewhere.
I Give Takers 3 “What’cha Got For Me?’s” out of 5