Rob’s review published on Letterboxd:
I had never even heard of this film until I saw it while browsing the Criterion Collection sale. This month I’m trying to watch a lot of different movies related to the mob and gangsters, so this caught my eye. Thief is about an expert safecracker that’s enlisted by a gangster to do a job for him. This leads our main character Frank to realize what’s important to him in life, and what he wants to do.
I think other people will say this too, but Thief reminded me a lot of Drive. I think that’s because of the similar aesthetics of the two, and the fact that they’re both about people doing crimes that are changed by family. But going back to the aesthetics, Thief looks beautiful. The cinematography is able to really make everything pop, and the colors just look fantastic. My favorite shots are just of the rainy city. The look of the rain with the neon lights is fantastic. I have to mention real quick the amazing music. It’s just 80’s rock music, and it fits perfectly. That’s all I have to say about that.
I also thought the acting in this was great. James Caan plays Frank, and he’s perfect for this part. He seriously breathes a lot of unique energy into this character, and I feel like the character could be lost without him. Also the few scenes that Willie Nelson are in are perfect. The dynamic between him and Caan is beautiful, and I wanted to see a bit more of it.
I think this film needs more attention then it’s gotten. If you’re really interested in it, maybe check out the Criterion. The transfer looks great, and there’s some pretty good special features. With this film, you get a great story, awesome acting, and an amazing atmosphere. I highly suggest checking this out.