“Den of Thieves:” High Hopes, Poor Execution


50 Cent and Gerard Butler looked like good friends on the set of “Den of Thieves.” Credit @50cent

The most intimidating section of the Los Angeles law enforcement is tested by a group of robbers. Twenty million dollars is taken and destroyed by the Los Angeles Branch of the Federal Reserve daily. These robbers jump at the opportunity to pull the ideal heist and take money nobody is looking for before it is destroyed, obviously behind the back of the cruel Los Angeles law enforcers.

“Den of Thieves” is a 2018 thriller and mystery film. The term ‘den of thieves,’ otherwise known as the thieves’ den, means a place visited by thieves or other criminals. The entire movie is a prime example of the game of cops and robbers, which was and still is a popular children’s game; some children even dress as cops and robbers for Halloween. The objective of the game is to catch the most wanted criminals and to restore order in the city, similar to the movie plot. To do this, the two groups must come face to face. This may sound simple, but obstacles are put in place to make the movie more interesting. At the end of both the game and film, there is a winner. The two hour and twenty-minute long action movie was released Jan. 19, 2018 in the United States with a budget of $30 million and an “R” rating because of the violence, explicit language, and sexuality. So far, it has grossed $17 million in the Box Office, with mixed reviews from critics.

Christian Gudegast, the American writer and filmmaker, was responsible for directing and producing this movie. He has had previous experience in filmmaking with “A Man Apart” and the more popular film “London Has Fallen.” He graduated at the top of his class from UCLA Film School in 1992; Gudegast produced a thesis film by the name of “Shadow Box,” which won the award for Best Student Film in that same year. It seems as though “London Has Fallen” is

still his most successful piece. The stars of the film include Gerard Butler, 50 Cent, Pablo Schreiber, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Evan Jones, Dawn Olivieri, Mo McRae, and Max Holloway.

It was reported that Gerard Butler, a Scottish actor, producer and singer would lead in “Den of Thieves,” June 14, 2016, by STX Entertainment. He was perfect for the role of a bad cop due to his previous success in playing the tough guy role in movies; he adds flair to the movie’s intense plot. Firstly, the movie is set in Los Angeles, presented to be the bank-robbery capital of the Western World. Gerard Butler embodied a bad cop, head of a major crime unit in Los Angeles. The cop went by the name of Nick “Big Nick” Flanagan. They are an exclusive, relentless group of Country Sheriff Deputies consisting of bad cops who were desperate to catch their men. The cops focused on catching a group of thieves with a plan to rob the Federal Reserve in Los Angeles.

Pablo Schreiber played Merrimen; he is an ex-marine and a skilled bank robber. Merrimen is a felon, fresh out of prison, who put together a group of thieves to commit a massive robbery. His crew consists of tough men he knows from the Marines.

Nick is described as a dirty cop because of his actions. He drinks a lot, and he is very harsh. The two men are similar in the way that they are both hot-headed and quite clever. Both are always ready for action. Their attitudes intensify the film because the audience understands that eventually, their views will clash. As the plot thickens, the two play the game of cat and mouse, and the tension between these two grows stronger. Who will win?

The actors in this film were all remarkable. Therefore, they made the movie believable. Los Angeles was a great setting because it is busy and big. It is very convincing that a huge heist would take place there. Although the film had a lot of potentials, it did not live up to them. It had a great budget, an excellent group of actors, and a good location, but it still lacked something.

The script was good but drawn out because the movie was too long and filled with useless elements. Sometimes simplicity is best.

This film is relevant and raises awareness. There are bad cops and hard-core criminals in the real world. The game of cops and robbers is no longer a game; it is a real-life issue. The movie would have been much better if it was concise. It had everything a good film should contain but sort of went off course a few times. It would have been better if it focused more on things that mattered more than just useless details.

Rating: 3 out of 5 paws

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