Review | ‘Honest Thief’ provides a purely escapist thriller

Honest Thief | Dir: Mark Williams | ★ ★ ★  ½ 

Filmed in late 2018, Honest Thief is pure escapism. Times have changed (it is rated PG for Crude References, Brief Strong Language and Strong Violence) and this just the sort of big screen film to make the world go away for 100 minutes. It has charismatic actors, fast-paced action with adrenalin-pumping car chases, pyrotechnics and a smidge of romance.

Tom Carter (Liam Neeson) is the thief who has robbed 12 small town banks in 7 American states in 8 years, netting $9 million. Now living in Boston, he decides to turn his life around when he meets Annie (Grey’s Anatomy’s Kate Walsh who is currently residing in Cottesloe) and wants to cut a deal with the FBI.

The retired bank robber, who was dubbed The In-and-Out Bandit, wants to return all the money he stole in exchange for a reduced sentence. The trouble is that 15 other people have already confessed to the robberies and he is having difficulties in getting the authorities to believe him. There is plenty of humour before people start dying.

Tom hasn’t told Annie what he is intending to do but she finds out when he falls out of a two storey window while fighting the FBI agent who plans on pinning the murder of a police officer on him. The 68 year-old Neeson does what he does best – avenge the ‘baddies’, prove his –‘innocence’ and get the ‘girl’. It’s all relevant.

There isn’t much time to dwell on the plot-holes in this classic B-movie thriller as the tight pacing and constant swerves take all your attention. There is also the classic good cop, bad cop scenario, with the in-between cop finding out that sitting on a fence when bullets are flying isn’t a great place to be.

The film has a solid Catholic ideology because all can be forgiven if you repent, especially if you have a good back story. Of course, there are different levels of ‘badness’ and some people are just unredeemable. Fortunately love conquers all … bring up the music.

Lezly Herbert

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