Honest Thief Review

He’s a man with a unique set of skills and he will use them for the same role in every film he does. His name is Liam Neeson. His latest role is in Honest Thief where he plays a retired Marine demolition expert running around town bringing justice to a crime he did commit while being framed for other crimes while he was trying to come clean.

“In and Out Bandit” Tom (Liam Neeson) has been robbing banks for a number of years around Boston. As you can guess by his name, his skill to enter and leave the bank with no trace has kept authorities from figuring out who he really is. Interestingly, with all the money he’s collected it’s never been touched. The enjoyment was in entering and leaving the bank with no trace, even if he doesn’t like the name “In and Out Bandit”.

Needing somewhere to hide the money Tom finds a storage facility. And as fate will always find it’s the way, Tom meets Annie (Kate Walsh) who is the storage facility manager. After dating for some time Tom decides he needs to tell Annie the truth before he can settle down and truly make a life with her.

Knowing the consequences Tom comes clean to the police. But as many over the years have come forward declaring they are the In and Out Bandit, Tom is at first blown off and handed to the rookies to handle the case. Young and dumb the rookie’s Agent Nivens (Jai Courtney) and Hall (Anthony Ramos) decided to take the money for themselves and pin the loss on Tom. But what the rookies didn’t account for was Tom’s background aiding in bringing the rookies to justice. All the while winning the heart of Annie.

Honest Thief is at the very basic line similar to most of Neeson’s projects, some of which are questionable – Cold Pursuit. Honest Thief, however, has something a little more watchable. Maybe it’s the corrupt cops, the fall from the second-story window, the beautiful redhead. Honest Thief is as you would expect from these types of films rather predictable but the journey to that predictable ending is still an enjoyable ride.

Liam Neeson (Love Actually, Taken, Batman Begins) has, for the most part, played the retired combat person in some way or another who uses his old skills for the greater good. And there’s something about him playing that role that is both unlucky for him but comforting to watch. Neeson brings his usual acting skills to the table, a wealth of on-screen combat training and just a pinch of dramatic effect to make him a believable character. When the shoe fits right?

In a similar position is Kate Walsh (13 Reasons Why, Grey’s Anatomy, Under the Tuscan Sun) who tends to manage one role and really well. Walsh seems to have kept the persona from her days as Dr Addison Montgomery in Grey’s Anatomy. The confident independent woman who just wants to be loved and be in love.

Director and Writer Mark Williams is behind Honest Thief and only his second effort as a Director. A Family Man was his Directorial debut, you’d be excused if you’ve never heard of it as it only rates at 6.5/10 in IMDB. You can tell Williams has had a background in telling a story with action and questionable characters. His car chases and fight scenes are well done and give the film the suspense and action one would crave from such a film. It’s his ability to connect that with the characters and the viewer which hasn’t quite come across in the film. 

Overall, Honest Thief manages to offer something a little more than just a bank robber trying not to get caught. The story gives a human side to it. Like when you hear about a retired person shoplifting just to feel alive again. Neeson brings his usual skills and you can just about believe a connection between him and Walsh. If you didn’t guess the ending from get-go, you’d do it pretty quick after and from there you can sit back and watch it unfold without giving it your every bit of attention.

Review by Jay Cook

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