ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Watch Heat not Takers

Updated on May 26, 2013

Michael Mann's Heat

Source

"I say what I mean, I mean what I say"

Michael Mann's Heat boasts an impressive cast and excellent production values for a serious heist film, the kind of movie that in the last 20 years or so has usually been relegated to the glossy B-movie category with stiff acting and a lot of cheap thrills. The all-star cast delivers hard-hitting dialogue and brings us some memorable characters.

Watching this film, I could not help but think back to some of my favorite crime films from the 1950s and 60s, particularly the French heist films Rififi and The Second Wind (both films that you should see at some point). Like these earlier films, Heat cuts to the souls of its characters. Rather than take it for granted that some people break the law while others enforce it, Heat probes its characters, examining their motives which are often complex. For the McCauley (Robert De Niro) and his crew, stealing is about the thrill of the job, not the "score." For Lt. Hanna (Al Pacino), keeping law and order is about the same. Both men love their work, perhaps Hanna a little bit more than McCauley who De Niro presents as world-weary and lonely. Both men are dedicated to their jobs and their personal lives suffer as a result. Hanna is losing his third wife while McCauley has apparently never been in a relationship he could not walk out of if he heard the eponymous "heat" coming around the corner.

The similarities of police men and robbers are highlighted by the composition of the crews and the acting of the leads. Physically, both crews look so similar that it is hard to tell them apart in long shots. The similarities are also exploited in the acting to blur the line between lawman and lawbreaker. De Niro, the robber, plays a clean-cut businessman whose job just happens to be taking other people's money. He is a hard man who follows his own personal code, evident in an early scene when he and his crew try to execute a renegade member for forcing them to kill security guards needlessly. On the other hand, Pacino renders Hanna a larger-than-life figure who is wildly unpredictable. It is a testament to the success of this effect that I recently saw a quote from Pacino's character on Heat's facebook page and posted it, feeling a little guilty for glorifying a robber, only to remember, of course, that Pacino played the policeman!


Takers

Source

"We're Takers, That's What we Do"

Takers, although similar to Heat in many ways (including the juxtaposition of law enforcers and law breakers as protagonists) fails as a film. The opening sequence is dominated by what the late Roger Ebert called "nausea cam" and tries too hard to make a dramatic opening. This, however, is not the film's most damaging flaw. What truly makes this film pointless is the fact that it takes more interest in glamorizing the world of criminals (even the police seem amoral, acting just as reckless and brash as the men they seek to bring to justice). The film seems to care little about characters and more about flashy action sequences as other reviewers have noted.

Your Turn

Which Movie Do You Prefer?

See results

"Watch This not That"

This is the first of what I call my "Watch 'this' not 'that'" series of reviews. These reviews are intended to pick the better of two similar films so that viewers who are seeking a particular type of film will be satisfied. This is not to say that the film I recommend viewers avoid is bad. I simply found that it was a less satisfying experience and, as I hope is evident in my reviews, was lacking something which the first film provided.

Buy or Rent Heat

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)