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Overall Rating

Awesome: 18.09%
Worth A Look34.04%
Average: 28.72%
Pretty Bad: 10.64%
Total Crap: 8.51%

8 reviews, 46 user ratings

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Bandits (2001)
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by Chris Parry

"Willis finds a smart script, made better by the inclusion of Blanchett."
4 stars

It would have been so easy to miss this movie, if you were me. I mean, it stars Bruce Willis. You know what I'm saying, right? Bruce Willis, he of the dull action movie, he of the crooked grin and corny cliche, a Schwarzenegger without the Germanic accent and 'roid addiction. In other words, not a big draw if you like your movies 'thinky'. Yet, every now and then he manages to say yes to a script that isn't written in purple Crayola, and Bandits is just such a project. Willis still manages to play both ham and cheese, but with Billy Bob Thornton and Cate Blanchett beside him, you almost forget you're looking at the man who made "Yippee-kay-yay motherfucker" a household catchphrase.

Brucey Bob and Billy Bob are bankrobbers, recently busted out of the big house and looking for a big score or twenty. They rob banks, generally a pasttime that's looked down upon in good company, but Brucey Bob and Billy Bob are all that and a bag of crack in the bank robbing game, so it's not too long before they're all celebritied up and being lauded by those they rob, as they're robbing them. Enter pissy neglected housewife played by Catey Bob Blanchett, who finagles her way into the whole bank robbing scam as a means to escaping the drudgery or being a rich housefrau.

Who falls for who? I'm not going to give away any trade secrets here, but suffice to say things get a little triangled up and as the movie rolls along it goes from entertaining to weird to very weird to "okay, how did we get here again?"

Billy Bob is on top form as the 'smart' guy of the trio, engrossing himself in a series of hypochondriaic mystery illnesses and ailments. Though the whole "I've got a tumor" schtick does grow weary after a while, Billy Bob manages to infuse it with a whole lot of giggles and proves he's not all messed up by the stuff he and Angelina have been doing on weekends.

Cate Blanchett is, as always (and I mean always), perfection. She showed in Elizabeth that she can do complex and nail it. She showed in Pushing Tin that she can do vacuous and nail it. Here she shows she can do complex, vacuous, love interest, provocateur, seductress, mentalcase and bitch - all with aplomb.

Bandits does have issues that should have been dealt with at the development stage, but that's possibly being harsh on a decent film amongst the ocean of utter gobshite that has been released by Hollywood this year. If Bandits was intended to be fun, it hit the mark. If it was intended to be complex and analytical of the human condition, it missed it.

And bank robbery glorification aside (anyone who takes morality tips from movies deserves what they get), there's plenty to enjoy. Take a date, and leave her alone so she can enjoy a decent flick.

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originally posted: 10/22/01 20:52:12
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User Comments

6/20/07 Muted Orbz This wasn't acting, that's really Billy Bob. Ugh. 1 stars
6/04/07 Wendy Do you smell burning feathers? 4 stars
3/25/07 mb Good story ... well done. 5 stars
2/10/07 MP Bartley "Beavers and ducks!" 4 stars
8/17/05 Agent Sands One of my top 10 favorites. Elmore Leonard meets Woody Allen. 5 stars
8/08/05 R.W. Welch Shows some zip in the early going but slowly runs out of steam. Billy B has some good lines 3 stars
3/07/05 Charlie Being filmed in Oregon with a good cast, I have to give it 4 *. 4 stars
11/15/04 Joopy loop This is a 3.5 star movie from me, but still worth a look 3 stars
11/15/04 Ray I really like it!!! 5 stars
10/18/04 will rogers my favourite ivan campo tune: 1 stars
5/06/04 J.Peckerfoot harmless nad funny.great s.track and billy bob rocks! 5 stars
5/01/04 zach witham beavers and ducks- best line ever 5 stars
6/24/03 adrian lane kate what a gal 4 stars
4/08/03 Shadaan Felfeli i liked the film and loved the cast....Blanchet is my idea of a woman 4 stars
3/31/03 Paul Coleman Way below average. What was going on in the filmmakers minds? 2 stars
3/22/03 Allen How can you people like this pile of puke?!! 2 stars
2/02/03 Charlie Freschl I enjoyed it a lot 5 stars
11/03/02 Kari Wald BEAVERS AND DUCKS -best line ever 5 stars
9/18/02 Danielle Ophelia Very amusing, REAL comedy. The three leads rocked my socks. 4 stars
5/19/02 Chowie billy bob thornton is so fine.. 5 stars
4/30/02 katie hilarious.. odd comedy. GREAT! 5 stars
4/23/02 Monday Morning Bruce Willis...someday this guy's gonna make it big. 4 stars
4/19/02 Weedle Billy Bob continues to amaze 4 stars
3/22/02 antje quite like it 4 stars
1/23/02 Robert Cate is as perfect as always, therefore, it's a movie worth seeing 4 stars
1/22/02 Some Guy excellent movie! The movies ending was great. What a twist. 5 stars
12/14/01 Michael A funny movie that is just a litte too long. 4 stars
12/10/01 Matthew Bartley Could be more exciting but very funny nonetheless.Thornton was excellent 4 stars
11/22/01 Richard Connehey C ate was almost not horrible and outlandishly boring...almost 1 stars
11/22/01 j man really good movie 5 stars
11/22/01 steve goldenbaum Billy bob should stick to playing retards. A movie for Budgie brained commies. 1 stars
11/22/01 Barbara Cagle Going to see it again. Bought the soundtrack- it is awesome! Will buy the video too! 5 stars
10/31/01 ustabawillisfan Worst Willis movie I have seen. Trite, predictable and waste of time 1 stars
10/30/01 titsboobyala I shit on this film and your mom 1 stars
10/29/01 Jimmy James fun? i guess so, i barely smiled, cate rocks ass 3 stars
10/24/01 Barbara Cagle Loved it! Good escape film. Bruce Willis still melts my butter! Billy Bob/Cate are GREAT! 5 stars
10/23/01 spaceworm Cate. Yes indeed. And the guys are okay. 4 stars
10/19/01 Jestyr Way to predictable, it had brief moments on non-sucking. 2 stars
10/18/01 cindy Great movie...Billy Bob stole the show!!! 5 stars
10/17/01 Suzz easily the biggest waste of time, energy and money this year 1 stars
10/16/01 thanatos rarely do i see such interesting characters, and their interaction was hilarious. 5 stars
10/15/01 Dave Knave It had it's moments, but ultimately predictable and forgettable. 4 stars
10/15/01 poetchuck Wonderful movie with interesting twists 5 stars
10/13/01 KCobain Great, just what we need. Glorification of bank robbers. 1 stars
6/05/01 Ben Donnelly great movie, it was fantastic 5 stars
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