johnlink ranks THE ITALIAN JOB (2003)

This is by no means a new title to me. I consider THE ITALIAN JOB to be one of the premier caper films of the decade. I was looking for an old standby, and realized I hadn’t popped this in since picking it up on Blu Ray. So, here we go…

I watched THE ITALIAN JOB (2003) on 12.18.09. It was, I would guess, either my sixth or seventh viewing of the film.

NOTE: THIS RANKING UTILIZES THIS SITE’S ORIGINAL SYSTEMIC ARTICLE WRITING METHOD. THE METHOD BY WHICH THE RANKINGS WERE ARRIVED AT, HOWEVER, REMAIN THE SAME.

FILM

I like what I have seen of F. Gary Gray, though I admit I have not gotten through his entire catalog. But I consider both this film and THE NOEGOTIATOR to be fun, tense rides. There is nothing spectacular about the filming of either movie, but Gray knows when to get out of the way and let his characters do their thing. I am not a big fan of the two cutaway sequences in this film (the backstory and the epilogue), and think there could have been less clumsy ways to introduce them. Overall, this is a film of average, though not poor, technique. SCORE: 4

MOVIE

Been trying to figure out whether this is a nine or a ten. I love everything about the plot in this movie, and enjoy (and find memorable) the banter. Sure, the Napster stuff was a contemporaneous reference which does not age well, but it is otherwise fully intact. The reason I give this a ten is that if someone asked me to watch this again today, I would say yes without hesitation. SCORE: 10

ACTING

Ever since seeing THE HAPPENING I have been weary of Mark Wahlberg. There are definitely some vanilla line readings in this, but nothing on the scale of the aforementioned acting tragedy. The chemistry amongst the team is fun, though not deep. Character development is minimal, but not terrible. Ed Norton elevates the villain to above-average status. Like the filmic qualities of THE ITALIAN JOB, the work here is average. SCORE: 5

WRITING
I really like this script by Donna & Wayne Powers. It is a write-by-numbers screenplay in a lot of ways. Introduce team doing random job. Show betrayal. Team seeks revenge while seeking out dead partner’s family member for help. Plan is made, plan goes wrong (we need some conflict, you know), plan changes on the fly, everyone is happy. There is never a second in this film when you do not think it will go right at the end. The fun is seeing it unfold, much like the Ocean’s films. The reason I mark this up slightly is because this format is elevated to a fun, quick, witty pseudo-art. The dialogue is very sharp, and there are a good number of memorable lines. I’d be happy to see what they do with the oft-rumoured sequel. SCORE: 6

FINAL TALLY

FILM: 4; MOVIE: 10; ACTING: 5; WRITING: 6

4+10+5+6+0= 25

FINAL SCORE: 6.25

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~ by johnlink00 on December 18, 2009.

2 Responses to “johnlink ranks THE ITALIAN JOB (2003)”

  1. Personally, I preferred this movie when it was called Ocean’s 11.

  2. Fair enough, and there are certainly things Ocean’s 11 did better. But as far as pure fun, I see them as equal.

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