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211 (2018) - Movie Review

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211 (2018) - Movie Review

2 stars

Nicolas Cage plays a retiring cop in professional snowboarder turned director York Alec Shackleton’s 211, a fictionalized version of one of the deadliest (and bloodiest) bank heists in America’s history. Haven’t heard about this one yet? Cage made like five films last year alone that you’ve probably never heard about either. This one, without a solid presence from Cage as Officer Mike Chandler, will be another that you can add to the list.

Chandler is a bit ostracized from his family. He put his career as a cop before everything and lost his wife to cancer and his daughter, Sophie Skelton as Lisa, to his own cluelessness. While his daughter’s husband, Dwayne Cameron as Steve (also a cop), is on his side, there is a limit to what repairs he can make in their relationship. Yet, on the day of this bank heist, there’s news of a pregnancy to share with Chandler. Things are looking up.

Until they don’t. 

With an On Demand release date of June 8, this Eastern European-shot film from Millennium Films and Nu Image Bulgaria wants to be the next Heat.  The performances, with Cage only raging one time, keep it from being much of anything.  The movie swings for the fences; however, and rolls out aimlessly.  Its ambition is untidy. Shackleton’s 211 hopes to also bring in the End of Watch audience. If those poor souls are anything like me (who tries to support Cage in whatever he is in), they are bound to be a disappointed by this ADR’d to the maximum release of loose ends and greatest bullets.

"swings for the fences; however, and rolls out aimlessly"

Beginning with a 10-minute shootout as a group of pissed off soldiers try to get what they consider theirs in Afghanistan, the movie can be a wicked puzzle to put together. This group of men get double-crossed in the middle east and must go to America in order to get their money. The marching orders are pull of a bank heist and get away; it becomes a messy affair. But I’m not just talking about the actual heist.

There are lots of moving pieces in the film’s many start-ups which, unfortunately, shortchanges the actual story. Cage might headline the movie, but his character takes a backseat until the first part is nearly finished. You see, we’ve got pieces of lives that we have to put together. On the fateful day of the well-armed heist as random characters are introduced, we get unplanned and unnecessary scenes with bank managers at home, the coffee barista getting tipped, and so on to distract us from the weak storyline that has been placed around the events in the narrative.

We needed a movie that hit us hard with the action and left all the extra weight of additional characters on the cutting room floor. In fact, the only extra character this film needed was Chandler’s ride along passenger, Michael Rainey Jr. as Kenny, who has just been suspended from school for beating up another student who was bullying him. Instead we get the principal suspending him, his mother, and his cell phone which, unfortunately, goes nowhere fast.

You thought this was a movie about police brutality and cell phones, didn’t you? That’s what the trailer would have you believe. 211, though, is not; it doesn’t even really make any comments on cell phones that are worth a damn. It, much like everyone in this prolonged shootout, just ducks and try to stay alive.

Outnumbered and outgunned, 211 is a certified dud.

211 (2018) - Movie Review

MPAA Rating: R.
98 mins
: York Alec Shackleton
York Alec Shackleton
Nicolas Cage, Sophie Skelton, Michael Rainey Jr.
: Action | Crime

Memorable Movie Quote: "Shots fired. Shots fired."
Theatrical Distributor:
Momentum Pictures
Official Site:
Release Date:
June 8, 2018
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
No details available.
Synopsis: Bank heist movie in the vein of "End of Watch" meets "Black Hawk Down"

No details available.

211 (2018) - Movie Review

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