The 13 most underrated heist movies of all time

    a crime films It has many sub-genres to offer – take gangsters, for example. This is arguably the most famous example, with another example being the police action. But with the subgenre in hand, some of the most iconic directors in Hollywood history have pulled off some great cinematic heist. They stole our attention from the first frame of their movie to its thrilling conclusion.

    Many of these titles also featured famous actors among their cast. But just to be clear: This list will explore films that were either underrated by critics upon release or disappointing in terms of box office receipts. But the movies overlooked from the modernist perspective also apply. All that said, these are the most underrated theft movies ever.

    13 A very hot summer afternoon

    A very hot summer afternoon
    Warner Bros.

    This is not necessarily to confirm it A very hot summer afternoon (1975) was ignored by critics when it came out in the 1970s, and it can’t be said that more moviegoers should have seen it in theaters. It’s just that, when audiences look at Al Pacino in modern terms, or the late actor John Cazale, or even crime films in general from the ’70s, it’s likely their first thought. The Godfather (1972).

    This is justified. but A very hot summer afternoon It explores interpersonal relationships and thus the meaning of character in storytelling more than any other film of its kind. It focuses on the inner turmoil of protagonist Sonny Koufax – and audiences feel a greater connection to this character than to the robbery itself. In the end, even a near-perfect rating on the critical consensus site Rotten Tomatoes doesn’t do this wonderful review justice.

    Related: Afternoon on the Dog: The Truth Behind the Movie

    12 Games house

    Games house
    Orion Pictures

    Likes A very hot summer afternoonThis heist movie was well received by critics upon release. But unlike the aforementioned Sidney Lumet movie, Games house (1987) by David Mamet was an unexplained box office bomb, grossing an insufficient $2.5 million at the worldwide box office. Even more criminal is that despite a 97% approval rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes, it carries a questionable audience score of 79% on the same site.

    This sums up the value of the name here from a modern point of view. But the critics were really right, as this remains among the highest quality films the subgenre has ever seen. With heavy elements of neo-noir, it follows a psychiatrist as she engages in the criminal antics of one of her patients. Thanks to Mamet’s witty script combined with his brilliant direction, Games house It is ranked twelfth.

    Related: The Movies That Proved 1987 Was a Special Year for Cinema

    11 123

    Sony Pictures launch

    Directed by Tony Scott, it was the penultimate entry in the American director’s career. And even if you don’t recognize his name, you will undoubtedly know the cast inside him 123 (2009) Take Denzel Washington and John Travolta, for example. Their efforts weren’t entirely noteworthy, but their inherent talent couldn’t impress critics even in the slightest.

    Unfortunately it seemed to be the biggest takeaway all these years later. While the previous two choices on the list were well respected by critics, they have lost most semblance of name value with the passage of time. 123 It is underrated on both accounts. I landed here at No. 11.

    10 Before the devil knows you’re dead

    Before the devil knows you're dead with a gun Ethan Hawke and Philip Seymour Hoffman

    Directed by Sidney Lumet in the final feature film of his career, this marks yet another heist movie that was already well received by critics upon release. But by looking Before the devil knows you’re dead (2007) grossed modestly at the worldwide box office, which can undoubtedly be considered an understatement from a commercial point of view. In addition, it is rarely talked about today.

    Starring Philip Seymour Hoffman alongside Ethan Hawke as two brothers who agree to rob their parents’ jewelry store, the film’s plot explores meaningful themes right from the start. You feel connected to these characters thanks to the well-written development and palpable dynamics shared by the entire cast – not just the aforementioned performers, but others like Marisa Tomei, Albert Finney, Michael Shannon, and Amy Ryan. They facilitate a massive heist plot that comes in at #10.

    9 out of sight

    out of sight
    Universal Pictures

    Directed by Steven Soderbergh – who made the movie Ocean Trilogy in the next decade – out of sight (1998) featuring George Clooney in the title role. But unlike the aforementioned franchise, this one isn’t really discussed by modern audiences as it should be. It was adapted from Elmore Leonard’s novel of the same name, written two years earlier. And the script, written by Scott Frank, was true to its book counterpart as Clooney plays Jack Foley, a professional thief caught robbing a bank in Miami.

    More plot details are best left under the surface so you can experience it for yourself, but just know that it’s well-written from start to finish, with meaningful character dynamics and a resonant ending scene. Critics were rave about it upon release, and it didn’t quite do well at the box office. But it has to be on everyone’s list of best heist movies, and that’s unfortunately not the case.

    8 American animals

    Evan Peters as Warren Lipca in American Animals
    AI movie

    As one of the latest movies on the list, American animals (2018) didn’t exactly have time to resonate with audiences. They were by no means lined up in theaters to check out on release. And that’s despite its intriguing premise of four undergraduates making a clever plan to steal their library – based on a true story that took place in 2004 on the campus of Transylvania University, which is located in Lexington, Kentucky.

    The movie itself uses different high-level script writing methods to achieve an entertaining heist joint from start to finish. It features an impressive roster of up-and-coming actors, too: guys like Evan Peters, Barry Keoghan, and Blake Jenner. A must watch for fans of the subgenre.

    7 The result

    The result
    Paramount Pictures

    Despite a star-studded cast with names like Robert De Niro, Edward Norton, and Marlon Brando – in the latter role of his career, no less – even their combined talent can really impress critics in terms of The result (2001). Protagonist Nick (played by De Niro) plans to settle down with his wife, but first he recruits a new green partner in Norton’s character (named Jack Teller) to pull off an almost impossible robbery.

    And despite doing decently with moviegoers upon release, and nearly doubling its total budget of $68 million, this Frank Oz spin-off fell under critical apprehension. What’s more is that it has held up perfectly today, but is almost never talked about. It is ranked seventh.

    6 grab

    Stephen Graham and Jason Statham
    Gems screen

    English director Guy Ritchie has plenty of underrated titles in his directorial debut – many also within the available subgenre. But it is perhaps the most confusing film of its kind in terms of consensus review scores grab (2000), starring Jason Statham, Stephen Graham, Brad Pitt, and Benicio del Toro.

    Relatively highly regarded today, but that wasn’t quite the case upon release despite a deep, well-written plot and memorable performances to boot. There are some amusing character dynamics playing out around every corner as well, and Richie’s overall direction helps land grab in the top ten.

    5 blow it up

    blow it up
    New Line Cinema

    Directed by F. Gary Gray from a screenplay by Kate Lanier, it features truly remarkable efforts from every single cast involved: Jada Pinkett, Queen Latifah, Vivica A. Fox, and Kimberly Elise. And despite collecting good money in theaters – $41.6 million on a $9 million budget – blow it up (1996) only holds a 71% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

    These numbers do not at all indicate quality here. Its premise is fairly simple: Set in Los Angeles, four friends devise a plan to rob a bank. But not for selfish reasons. Each character has their own motive, and often goes through the process of being robbed for the betterment of their loved ones. And the overall product achieved a catchy tone, with clever dialogue and interesting plot points to boot. It is without a doubt among the most underrated Hollywood heist films ever made.

    4 Do not move suddenly

    Do not move suddenly
    Warner Bros.

    This marks yet another heist from Soderbergh, and there should be no contest to go down as a masterpiece despite its lack of popularity. Critics praised it, as they should have. But general moviegoers are still generally unfamiliar with the name. Which is a shame, as well Do not move suddenly (2021) is probably the most stylized movie on the list with clear neo-noir elements popping up in every frame.

    It’s one of the best movies of the decade so far, frankly, with two of Soderbergh’s most frequent collaborators in the lead roles: Don Cheadle and Benicio del Toro. but Do not move suddenly He also has memorable efforts from the likes of Jon Hamm, Brendan Fraser, Ray Liotta and Kieran Culkin. This should be on your list if it isn’t already.

    3 thief

    United Artists

    It’s directed by Michael Mann, who made another heist movie with a more high-profile face value heat (1995), this particular project starred James Caan in the titular role. A professional safe-breaker, Frank is trying to leave his criminal life in the past. He wants to move on from robbing banks and start a family with his new wife.

    But when things go wrong during his latest heist, so does his plot thief (1981) to a dramatic degree. This is one of those movies that meet every criterion that should be considered underrated: it underperformed in theaters, generally barely impressed critics, and is rarely seen in the modern landscape. And for that, it lands here at number three.

    2 On the lookout

    Best bank robbery movies of all time

    Written and directed by a little-known American filmmaker named Scott Frank, this was his first ever feature film – for that fact alone, it should have received more recognition for its quality. But it also features an impressive cast: Joseph Gordon-Levitt as protagonist Chris Pratt, for a start. This is a fun note off the bat. And On the lookout (2007) also has Jeff Daniels as Louis’ roommate, and Isla Fisher as his love interest named “Luvlee” Lemons.

    It was well enough by the critics but grossed $5.4 million at the box office Box office around the world From a budget of $16 million. And it carries near non-existent value today when it should legitimately be considered among the highest quality heist films ever made. It follows Gordon-Levitt’s character Chris as a maintenance worker at a bank who gets linked to a plan to rob the facility where he works. It’s exciting around every corner and lands here in second place.

    1 theft

    Lionsgate premiere

    You would think that fans of this subgenre would have gone to see a movie called theft (2001). However, despite great dialogue and in-script structure from David Mamet – along with hard-hitting direction from him as well – this blockbuster made just $28.5 million at the box office from a budget of $39 million. In other words, it bombed, and frankly, the experts in the field couldn’t be kinder with their reviews.

    Some critics, such as Roger Ebert, defended the film upon release. But even the likes of Gene Hackman, Danny DeVito, and Sam Rockwell couldn’t catapult this movie to greater heights. The protagonist of Hackman Joe Moore is the boss of three professional thieves, including his wife, Fran. But after being spoiled in the robbery of a jewelry store in New York City, Joe is forced to retire from the trade. It’s a really entertaining game from start to finish and eventually lands here on top of the list.

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