Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.5
United Kingdom/USA, 2021. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Miramax, CAA Media Finance, Flic Films UK, Toff Guy Films. Screenplay by Guy Ritchie, Marn Davies, Ivan Atkinson, based on the screenplay Le Convoyeur by Nicolas Boukhrief, Éric Besnard. Cinematography by Alan Stewart. Produced by Ivan Atkinson, Bill Block, Andrew Golov, Guy Ritchie. Music by Christopher Benstead. Production Design by Martyn John. Costume Design by Stephanie Collie. Film Editing by James Herbert.
Teaming up with Jason Statham in a feature for the first time since the 2005 disappointment of Revolver, Guy Ritchie makes what might just be his masterpiece, a thrilling combination of great jigsaw-puzzle-piece storytelling and expertly plotted out and executed action sequences. Statham gets a new job at a security company that transports large amounts of money in armored vans across the city of Los Angeles, the vehicles and their drivers armed to protect the loot against a series of skilled and ruthless robbers who have been ambushing and robbing them of late. Arriving at the new job not long after a devastating robbery saw two of their drivers executed on the street, Statham is shown the ropes and takes to the job quite naturally, in fact he wows his colleagues when an attempted robbery fails because his sharp-shooter skills take out the criminals as easily as if he was changing lanes. This hero is full of secrets and we find out what they are, flashing back to the experiences he underwent that led him to take this job, then Ritchie’s camera delves further back in flashbacks and gives us scenes describing who the bad guys are and what motived them as well. The deeper elements of the story, which hint at a culture so poisoned by legitimized violence (namely sending men to war and having little concern for them if they come back), are embedded into the action with just the right level of frankness, allowing the emphasis to remain on explosive entertainment and the juicy thrills of revenge. Statham leads the cast with a confident sang-froid he hasn’t shown in years (perhaps thrilled that the Bank Job won’t be his only good film after all) and Ritchie pulls off a number of clever sleights of hand with skill and panache.