Saturday, March 15, 2014

The St. Louis Bank Robbery - Noir Movie Review

This was one of Steve McQueen’s early movies.  This is supposed to be based on a true story of a bank robbery.  

            Much of the movie is on four men who are planning a bank robbery.  These men are supposed to be warped and dangerous, according to the movie promos.  

            John Egan leads the group and they’re going through the motions of planning to rob the bank from watching when the security guards appear to George Fowler - played by Steve McQueen - driving around the different parts of the streets that lead to the bank along with a planned getaway. 

             There were several scenes where you could tell that Egan didn’t like women.  The blame would go to his mother, who either neglected him or beat him.  At the beginning of the movie, he tells the other men not to meet any women until after the robber is completed.  

              Gino, another one of the thugs, is in several scenes where he can’t be in a small room because he seems to think about the times that he is in jail.  This makes him claustrophobic and he is seen running out of the bathroom screaming at one point.  

               The only thing we learn about George Fowler is that he was a great football player in high school and was expelled for some reason.  At one time, he was going out with Gino’s sister, Ann.  

                The plot of robbing the bank would be complicated when Gino asks George to meet with Ann and see if he would give him $50.  He tells Ann that Gino is out of town.  When Ann sees Gino the next day by the bank, she’s afraid that George and Gino would rob the bank.  This would lead her to be drunk and write on the bank wall warning, you are going to be robbed tomorrow. 

                  In the end, there wasn’t much of a robbery.  Character development was poorly done.   McQueen is not impressive as an actor in this movie.  He is a much better actor than this compared to his other movies.   

                  The person who wrote the screenplay was Richard Heffron.   He had big hits in his later years including Banacek, The Rockford Files, and Future World, a movie with Yul Brynner.  

                    This was not one of Heffron’s better movies.  I would only give it one star.  It was awful.  

Ron Hummer

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