3 out of 10
Another Bummer From Christopher Plummer
Written by Russell Gewirtz and directed by Spike Lee, Inside Man is the story of a bank heist and its reason for being: a secret that¹s been kept hidden deep in a safety-deposit box since World War Two.
Dalton Russel (Clive Owen) thought he had the perfect crime; it was thoughtfully schemed and dutifully played out. He robbed the bank at 20 Exchange place, taking with him close to 50 hostages. Disguised as painters, the three men and one woman went into the bank with one thing on their mind: escaping unscathed, bringing with them the secret of the man who is responsible for founding the bank in 1948.
Detectives Keith Frazier (Denzel Washington) and Bill Mitchell (Chiwetel Ejiofor) have been placed on the case after their boss is away on vacation. Together, they have to come up with a plan to foil the bank robbers and get the hostages out safely, but their plans get twisted when Madeliene White (played by Jodie Foster) shows up. White has been sent by Arthur Case (Christopher Plummer),the founder of the bank, because he wants the contents of his safety deposit box to remain protected. He will not, however, disclose exactly what those contents are. White agrees to help him.
Inside Man falls under the genre of crime, drama, mystery and thriller¹ but given the nature of its plot, thriller¹ is an over-statement. What should have taken place in 30 minutes, dragged on for just under two hours. There was minimal action taking place, and although some lines did draw laughter from the crowd, the overall plot was dull flash forwards¹ to the questioning room where detectives Frazier and Mitchell were questioning the hostages. It was as if they were trying to fill up as much time as they could because they did not have enough substance in the actual plot. A few tidbits of information, supposed twists, which became apparent at the end, but even those would not have kept me on the edge of my seat, because they were figured out almost as fast as they began.
Another lowly aspect of Inside Man was the continual derogatory remarks by police officers towards people of ethnicity. For example, one of the men who worked at the bank who was taken hostage was of the Sheik religion, and as soon as the captors released him, cops were all over him saying he was an Arab and therefore a terrorist.
The ending was a disappointment. Throughout the entire story the suspense grows and grows and a huge surprise is almost expected, but it never comes.
Film Critic: Amanda Dupuis