*Originally written April 3rd. 2016*
"Black and white"
I love heist films. I love Aaron Paul. I love bleak and gritty thrillers. So what happens when you mix them all together? Well, you somehow get a dull, boring and cliche mess that is Triple 9.
A bunch of criminals are forced to plan a heist by a Russian crime lord. So they decide the best plan would be to kill a cop and alert a 'triple 9' response that distracts all the police while they can commit their heist. There's also a load of underdeveloped side stories thrown in.
I was honestly so disappointed by this. I was expecting it to be in my top 10 of the year, but now it's looking to be in the bottom 10 at this point.
Aside from the cast and a few decent action scenes, there really is just nothing to Triple 9. It tries so hard with its bleak and gritty outlook that it almost gets comical. The film just forgets to make us care about any of these characters. Everyone is corrupt or bad in someway, but no one is compelling.
They try to explore the morality of what they're doing, but it fails pretty miserably. Had this not had the cast it had, then no way would it be having the solid reviews it got. I doubt it would have got a theatrical release either.
I sound really negative, but there is some good in Triple 9. Aaron Paul is excellent and easily the best thing about the film. I'm getting a bit worried about his post Breaking Bad career, he just doesn't seem to have much like finding films that are more than average. The rest of the cast are fine, except Kate Winslet, who is just really weird as the Russian crime boss with a hokey accent. I'm not gonna name the rest as the cast is insanely huge.
John Hillcoat's action scenes are pretty solid though. There is some decent visual flare, I liked the use of red smoke in the opening scene, that looked cool and the shield house invasion was interesting.
Triple 9 is one the biggest letdowns for me this year. Despite some good performances and decent action, there really was nothing more to this complete slog of a crime thriller.
Triple 9 is out now on Blu-ray and DVD in the UK
Watch the trailer below:
Twitter: @FigmentReviews, @DanBremner96 and @ArronRoke91
Instagram: @DanBremner96 and @ArronRoke
YouTube: Figment Reviews
Letterboxd: Dan and Arron