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Masterminds: Desperately Unfunny Real-Life Story of One of America’s Biggest Bank Heists

  • Kate McKinnonKristen Wiig...
  • Action & AdventureComedy
  • Jared Hess
reviewed by
Marija Loncarevic
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Masterminds: Desperately Unfunny Real-Life Story of One of America’s Biggest Bank Heists

Inspired by real-life events, Jared Hess’s heist-comedy, Masterminds, is a mindless and senseless film, which, despite having a handful of laughs amidst the scraps, fails to impress.

Meet David Ghantt (Galifiankis); a seemingly unsatisfied man who spends his days working as an armoured car driver delivering money to and from the vault of Loomis, Fargo & Co. Desperate to get out of the mundane routine, David dreams of one day doing something exciting in his life, whilst also secretly day-dreaming of a romance between him and his co-worker, Kelly Campbell (Wiig).

His world is turned upside down when one day Kelly decides to quit, before proposing that he robs the company of millions of dollars with friend Steve (Wilson) and promising to move to Mexico with him soon after.

Under the assumption that he will be with Kelly once the heist is complete, David soon finds himself facing a bit of a problem when the FBI and hitman Mike McKinney (Sudeikis) get on his tail.

Inspired by real-life events of the famed 1997 Loomis Fargo Robbery – supposedly one of the biggest cash robberies in the U.S during that time – Masterminds fails to take advantage of its talented cast who, like most of the picture’s tone, are portrayed in such a cartoonish way, that it’s difficult to really grasp the true nature of the story.

Galifiankis has proven to be a solid lead over the years, rather than a comedic sidekick, but isn’t able to do much with a character that’s painted as lovelorn loser, while despite the occasional flash, there seems to be little chemistry with Wiig’s character. The rest of the cast, too, with the exception of Wilson who, as the brains behind the plan. may be the most realised character, along with Leslie Jones who plays a frustrated FBI agent.

The quirky humour finds its presence throughout the entire movie and whilst there are a couple of jokes that land where they’re supposed to – the breathing-through-the-nose scene for example does have its moment – they are mostly feeble and ineffective.

Though there are a few funny moments – the breathing-through-the-nose scene stands out – the overall quirky comedic tone never finds its footing. One of the few redeeming elements is that the cinematography is polished and the movie does a fine job in offering plenty of 90’s fashion and pop-culture references, but overall Masterminds is unfocused, silly and just to desperate to be funny.

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Jim Carrey was originally attached to the film, but he dropped out and Owen Wilson replaced him.

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