COPS and robbers play out their high stakes game of cat and mouse on the streets of Los Angeles in director John Luessenhop's action thriller. With considerably less brains than brawn, TAKERS (12A) orchestrates its adrenaline-fuelled set pieces wit
COPS and robbers play out their high stakes game of cat and mouse on the streets of Los Angeles in director John Luessenhop's action thriller.
With considerably less brains than brawn, TAKERS (12A) orchestrates its adrenaline-fuelled set pieces with verve, bookending a predictable tale of double-cross and revenge with two daring heists and a slow motion final stand-off.
Paul Haslinger's original music is deafening to complement the pyrotechnics and car smashes that turn out to be the trademark of the close-knit team of robbers, who leave destruction in their wake.
It's little wonder the LAPD is so keen to apprehend the culprits before they rack up more collateral damage than could be covered by the bundles of green notes taken from bank vaults.
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Gordon Betts (Idris Elba), John Rahway (Paul Walker), AJ (Hayden Christensen), Jake Attica (Michael Ealy) and his brother Jesse (Chris Brown) are good friends who bankroll their extravagant lifestyles by engineering elaborate bank robberies.
For their latest heist, which pockets the group "just north of two million" dollars, they even steal the Channel 14 news helicopter to make the getaway.
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Meanwhile, LAPD detective Jack Welles (Matt Dillon) and his partner Eddie Hatcher (Jay Hernandez) are on the trail of the gang, slowly gathering the evidence that could put the thieves behind bars.
Director Luessenhop certainly has a talent for carnage on a grand scale and the snappy editing helps to maintain the kinetic energy.
However, he is never called upon to elicit emotional performances from his actors - even when faced with certain death, they're a lifeless bunch. - DAMON SMITH