Movie Review: MARAUDERS

MARAUDERS final poster

MARAUDERS was directed by Steven C. Miller and stars Christopher Meloni, Bruce Willis, Dave Bautista and Adrian Grenier alongside Johnathon Schaech, Lydia Hull, Tyler Jon Olson, and Texas Battle.

The opening scene of this crime thriller shows a brutal bank heist happen in rainy Cincinnati. Like all highly skilled bank robbers, this small group definitely has a few trademarks going for them – killer masks, cool gadgets, plenty of weapons, and a few ulterior motives. These guys are like a modern day Robin Hood – they rob rich banks and give it all to their favorite charities or people. This is where FBI special agent Jonathan Montgomery (Christopher Meloni), his right hand man agent Stockwell (Dave Bautista) and newbie agent Wells (Adrian Grenier) are brought onto the case and begin to try and put pieces of this complicated puzzle together so they can track these guys down.

More well executed heists take place and all evidence points to the bank owner Mr. Hubert (Bruce Willis) who is more than willing to cooperate with the feds. Agent Montgomery curses like a sailor as he combs for evidence and answers and nobody is safe when it comes to his foul mouthed ways. The skilled agent has some unique ways of getting what he needs out of the suspects and finding clues that gets his team closer to finding out who is actually robbing the banks. There’s also a local cop (Johnathon Schaech) who is also on the case and plays a key part in the story and even has his own tragic subplot going on. Ultimately, the FBI puts the pieces of this complicated puzzle together and they find out who is behind it all. These are more than your ordinary bank heists because there’s also a personal vendetta involved. Everyone removes their masks in the finale that ends up revealing one more twist to the story.

Okay, the story for Marauders was okay and all but it also happened to be the Achilles heel of this heist-thriller that was full of potential. There was just so much going in the story and honestly some of these main players (and their subplots) weren’t even necessary. I’m not a filmmaker so I’m just offering up my opinion on that. I still think Steven C. Miller did a really good job here capturing what he needed to make this a pretty cool movie. A great location, lots of rain, some high-tech heists, several twists, and a fantastic cast is what makes up Marauders.

The standouts to me were easily the talented cast assembled for Marauders. Bruce Willis is this soft spoken, rich suit who also ends up being one of the suspects plus he comes with a twist. Willis doesn’t have much screen time but he does play an important part in the story. There’s also Christopher Meloni’s character who curses so much that it gets a little comical at times. His character is a complicated one that is also full of tragedy. Still, I enjoyed his character a lot! Adrian Grenier’s character is the quiet type that comes with a few surprises. And now to the guy who stole the show and that’s Dave “Drax” Bautista! The big guy gets to show off his acting chops big time here and he does a fantastic job. All in all, the cast really came through for this movie and made it an enjoyable watch.

Bottom line is, Marauders ended up being one of those movies that had a lot of potential but could have been so much better if a few things (and characters) had been different – or even left out. It had so much going that some of the story (and characters) got pushed to the side and it got a little tricky/complicated at times. Could this have happened in the editing room? I don’t know! Maybe? Anyway, I’ve watched all of Steven C. Miller’s movies and I’m a big fan but this one isn’t one of his best offerings even though it’s still a pretty cool watch that’s loaded with a talented cast and some well executed heists. It’s a good movie but not a great one. Would I watch it again? Heck yeah I would! Marauders blasts into select theaters and On Demand on July 1st and is worth a watch.

Distributor: Lionsgate Premiere

Run Time: 107 Minutes

Rated: R

 

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