The Italian Job (1969)

0
0
Subscribe to Michael Caine alerts

Facts and Figures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Cast & Crew

Director:

The Italian Job (1969) Movie Review


Only the British and Steven Soderbergh seem to be able to make funny caper movies. The Italian Job -- the original one, that is -- is a quite funny, minor classic of the genre, elevated from midnight movie fare thanks to the presence of a spot-on Michael Caine.

The film's setup is pretty staid: Caine's Charlie Croker is straight outta prison, and he's right back at the crime game the moment he's released. Thanks to guidance from boss Bridger (Noel Coward, appearing primarily in films given to Caine), the job is meticulously planned and staffed: Ultimately the gig is to cause a giant traffic jam in the city of Turin, steal $4 million in gold from an armored car, and escape using clever non-roadway surfaces so the cops can't follow them.

Ultimately the planning for the job -- an hour of narrative wherein a dozen or so characters are introduced to us -- is a bit of a bore. But once the job itself is underway, the film truly shines. The Italian Job is never remembered as a character study or a twisting caper film. It's a movie with a fantastic heist and car chase at the end; the three Minis that race across Turin's rooftops and through its sewers have become iconic additions to film history. The chase is so good it makes the rest of the film pale in comparison. Oh, and the abrupt ending (intended to leave the movie open for a sequel that was never made) is a fantastic throwback that you never see today (though I suspect Kill Bill Volume 1 will give us something similar).

Coward's appearance in the film is as disposable as Benny Hill's (he plays, of all things, a computer expert who just happens to have a fetish for large-breasted women and who often appears in sped-up scenes). The many supporting characters and odd tangents serve simply to give the movie more than 30 minutes of running time -- dazzling though it may be.

On DVD, producer Michael Deeley offers a commentary track along with Matthew Field, who wrote a book about the movie. The other notable extra is one deleted scene -- a stylized part of the car chase meant to emulate a ballet and shot on an ice rink. It's funny but its reason for deletion from the film proper is obvious, as it would have slowed down the movie considerably.


Contactmusic

0
0
Subscribe to Michael Caine alerts

Comments

The Italian Job (1969) Rating

" Good "

Advertisement

More Michael Caine

A Little Chaos Trailer

In the palace of Versailles, a tremendous garden is maintained. One day, the builder and head gardener sees an ordinary woman arriving at the palace,...

Damien Rice - My Favourite Faded Fantasy Album Review

The solo career of Mr Rice is not one you may realistically describe as that with which you may associate a prolific output. His is...

Backstreet Boys: Show 'Em What You're Made Of Trailer

In the late 90's and early 00's, The Backstreet Boys were the most powerful boy band in the world. After discovering that they had not...

George The Poet - 1,2,1,2 (Dismantle Remix) Video

George The Poet unveils an audio for the Dismantle Remix of his single '1,2,1,2', taken from the tracks Remixes EP. The track has been produced...

Advertisement

Perfume Genius - Too Bright Album Review

Ever since the release of his debut LP 'Learning' back in 2010, Seattle's Perfume Genius has attracted increasing attention both publicly and critically. His piano...

The Boys of St. Paul's Choir School - O Come All Ye Faithful Video

The angelic voices of The Boys of St. Paul's Choir School perform a moving rendition of classic Christmas carol 'O Come All Ye Faithful'.

Jamie Scott - Last Christmas Video

Jamie Scott of London duo GRAFFITI6 performs an acoustic rendition of Wham!'s 1984 festive single 'Last Christmas' in a black and white one-take video. In...

Christina Aguilera Ft. Brian McKnight - Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas Video

In 2000, Christina Aguilera recorded a collection of some of her favourite Christmas songs and the sessions resulted in the album 'My Kind of Christmas',...

Advertisement