The Thomas Crown Affair (1999) Movie Review
If you can relate to this heady premise, you'll love The Thomas Crown Affair. A loose remake of the 1968 Thomas Crown Affair, this version pits Pierce Brosnan and Rene Russo against each other in a game of cat-and-cat. Brosnan is Thomas Crown, an uber-wealthy NYC tycoon with an art fetish. Russo is Catherine Banning, a semi-rogue insurance investigator who instantly pegs Crown as the thief when the local Monet goes missing.
Crown and Catherine then begin the dance of you-like-me-don't-you-I-thought-so that the too too rich obviously play every night. I don't think it's giving away too much to say there's a scene in which Russo writhes naked while being doused in gin.
While Brosnan carries this picture entirely on his shoulders (in fact, I've never seen Brosnan in anything that wasn't fairly good at least), it's Russo that weighs down this Affair to an extreme. From the get-go, it's obvious that Crown has all the cards over Catherine, and Brosnan's prowess as an actor similarly leaves Russo in the dust. And while Russo's hairstyles have obviously been the subject of much forethought, she always has on too much makeup and just doesn't look the part of the femme fatale with her enormous, square jaw. That the entire movie is shot in extreme close-up doesn't help matters.
Russo and a tacky Hollywood ending aside, The Thomas Crown Affair is a fun and lively thriller with hardly an explosion to wow you. And while the asinine Entrapment visited this exact same premise earlier this year, and I mean the exact same premise, discerning viewers are bound to appreciate the intelligence with which this film has been crafted.
Looks can be deceiving.