ReviewWriter: Peter ChaiWriter Ratings:Overall: Cast: Plot: Effects: Cinematography: Watch this if you liked:
“Ransom” & “Taken”
Directed by Simon West, "Stolen" sees Nicholas Cage playing Will Montgomery, a former thief who is imprisoned for 8 long years after being involved in a US$10 million bank robbery. Whilst he is trying to win his daughter Allison's heart back, Will finds out that his greedy old partner Vincent (Josh Lucas) has kidnapped his daughter and makes a deal that Will cannot say 'No' to. Will is ordered to exchange his daughter's life with a huge amount of money. Even though he is still under the police's close watch, Will then decides to rob a bank once more to fulfil Vincent's wish.
It is fine to let the audiences experience the intensity of action and Will's pressured moments while getting tons of money in the 12 hour timeframe before Vincent makes any unthinkable moves on his daughter with a fast-paced storyline. Nevertheless, everything that happens to Will before he entered prison for such a long period and after his release should be prolonged with a little in-depth story instead of being brought forward to the next scene abruptly.
Speaking of what the main character goes through in "Stolen" brings back Cage's classic action performance in Simon West's movie debut "Con Air" in some ways, especially the part about getting into jail and being absent from his family for almost a decade, minus the excitement of experiencing attacks in big aircrafts, non-stop explosions and thugs.
Like what the aging thief is facing through the exhausting chase from police officers in this movie, taking up a role like Will has given an obvious picture on the choices of roles Cage has taken up on-screen. We do not see amazing moments from the American veteran anymore, as if he is almost running out of gas on silver screen. However, as usual, the former Oscar winner is still able to deliver a convincing portrayal of the best thief in town with his trademark moment of madness in his acting under the intense pressure.
Vincent, the villain played by Josh Lucas is aptly annoying and disgusting. His awful attitude and psychopathic emotions makes one sweat and worry for Will's innocent daughter, whom he has held hostage in the trunk of a taxi. But too bad the scriptwriter does not give us a chance to see how Vincent got turned to the dark side in the first place. Instead, the target is emphasised more on Will. The reviewer feels that West and his team should at least divulge a little bit more on Vincent, who has so few scenes in the movie.
The thrilling effects of the heist scenes can be enhanced. A little advance equipment from the smart thieves is not enough for an action thriller of this day and age at all, and thus fails to impress.
Overall, do not have too high of expectations for "Stolen" as it is not really a piece that can make your day when you are craving for an adrenaline fuelled heart-pounding action film. Cinema Online, 18 October 2012