Movie ReviewsThrilling Confusion (Marauders Review)

Keith NoakesSeptember 14, 2016

When a bank is hit by a brutal heist, all evidence points to the owner Jeffrey Hubert (Bruce Willis) and his high-powered clients. But as a group of FBI agents, led by Agent Jonathan Montgomery (Christopher Meloni), Agent Stockwell (Dave Bautista), and Agent Wells (Adrian Grenier), dig deeper into the case, and the deadly heists continue, it becomes clear that a larger conspiracy is at play.

This one’s on DVD/Blu-Ray this week so might as well review it. Now this is the second heist film this year, following the star-studded Triple 9. While that film wasted its talented cast with a subpar story. At first glance, this one does not look to offer much new story-wise and boasts, albeit, a lesser-known cast which still features Meloni and Willis among others. The main difference here was instead of focusing on the bank robbers, focuses on a conspiracy involving the apparent target of these bank robberies, bank owner Jeffrey Hubert (Willis). On their tail was the FBI and agent Jonathan Montgomery (Meloni).

The film starts off with a bank robbery featuring a team of skilled robbers working with skill and precision. We are then introduced to the law enforcement dynamic of Cincinnati, where the film took place. The local police and the FBI did not get along, particularly Montgomery and Sergeant Mims (Johnathon Schaech). The two have a backstory explaining this but the film didn’t go particularly far with it. We also got to meet Montgomery and his team which features Agent Stockwell (Bautista) and new addition, Agent Wells (Grenier).

Throughout Montgomery’s investigation, it was discovered that these bank robbers had ulterior motives and the fact that they chose to rob Hubert’s banks was no coincidence. Their search for the robbers uncovered a conspiracy that implicated Hubert and countless others in positions of power. Because of this, the focus of Montgomery’s investigation shifted from the robbers themselves to Hubert. This subplot was kind of interesting but since all of it was very convoluted, it made things hard to follow which lessened the plot’s impact when everything finally came to fruition. As the film got closer and closer to uncovering the conspiracy, the film started to fall apart. Things just kept making less and less sense.

It just felt like the film both did too much and too little in that there was a lot going on but the film couldn’t handle all the subplots. Not only did the film have a needlessly convoluted plot, it had to balance that with each characters’ own subplots. The film just doesn’t go far enough with any of them, leaving characters undeveloped and uninteresting. The only interesting character here was Montgomery. He wasn’t very developed either but he was still fun to watch.

Despite the plot’s convoluted nature, the film was still kind of fun to watch because of Meloni’s performance as Montgomery. This character shared a lot with one of Meloni’s more popular characters in Detective Elliot Stabler from Law and Order: Special Victims Unit. Watching him here felt like more of the same which made him very appealing. Willis continues with another paycheck performance which reeked of phoning it in here as Hubert. He supposedly was the villain here but it was hard to tell sometimes due to the plot being hard to follow. Bautista was okay but was mostly irrelevant here. Grenier was okay here but was also wasted here which made him come off as not caring as much. The acting could have been better but they just couldn’t overcome the mediocre script.

Overall, this was a decent action film with decent performances but was let down by an overly convoluted plot and a mediocre script.

Score: 6/10

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