March 19, 2008 > Movie Review: The Bank Job
Movie Review: The Bank Job
Inspired by the infamous 1971 robbery that took place at the Lloyds Bank in Marylebone, London; this highly charged heist thriller tautly interweaves high level corruption, murder and sexual scandal in 1970's England. In the true life robbery, the stolen goods were never recovered from the bank, and the tale was prevented from ever being told due to a government gag order, allegedly to protect a prominent member of the British Royal Family.
A car dealer with a dodgy past and a new family, Terry (Jason Statham) has always avoided major-league scams. But when Martine (Saffron Burrows), a beautiful model from his old neighborhood, offers him a lead on a foolproof bank hit, Terry recognizes an opportunity of a lifetime. As the operation gets underway, the resourceful band of thieves burrows its way into a safe deposit vault at the Lloyds Bank, quickly hitting a literal treasure trove of cash and priceless gems. But while the crew did know that the safe deposit boxes contained millions in riches, they didn't realize that they also contained secrets that implicated everyone from London's most notorious underworld gangsters to powerful government figures, and even the Royal Family.
The film is, in part, based on historical facts. A gang did tunnel into a branch of Lloyds Bank on the night of September 11, 1971 and robbed the safe deposit boxes there. The robbers had rented a leather goods shop named Le Sac, two doors down from the bank, and tunneled a distance of approximately 40 feet, passing under the intervening Chicken Inn restaurant. A radio ham operator, overheard conversations between the gangsters and their rooftop lookout. He contacted police and tape recorded the conversations, which were subsequently made public.
This film reveals what was hidden for the first time - could it be that the thieves were the most innocent people involved?