Henry's Crime (2011)
Critic Consensus: Supporting actors Vera Farmiga and James Caan give the movie a little heft, but Henry's Crime is an otherwise predictable heist/comedy with slow pacing.
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as Henry Torne
as Julie Ivanova
as Max Saltzman
as Darek Millodragovic
as Debbie Torne
as Eddie Vibes
as Prison Guard
as Other Inmate
as Other Inmate #2
as Parole Reviewer
as Mr. Tuttle
as Bruce the Dick
as Interrogation Detect...
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Critic Reviews for Henry's Crime
An intermittently entertaining comedy/drama with a funny script and a fatal miscasting.
What's needed is someone nervous to play Henry. A Steve Buscemi, for example. Reeves maintains a sort of Zen detachment.
If "Henry's Crime'' is occasionally too pleased with itself, it's also pleasantly unpredictable, and it has a trio of sweet hambone performances at its center.
The film's ungainly mix of heist, romance and backstage comedy never jells.
Audience Reviews for Henry's Crime
"Keanu was perfect for this role. He is good at playing awkward silent types. I think that's just how he is in real life. So it's not a role I feel that challenged him much. As far as the story goes, it was just OK. Nothing special here. The acting was just OK as well. I liked Vera Farmiga in this. Her character is loud and a bit of a bitch. But that's not a bad thing, lol. She and James Caan gave this movie life. I was a little bored most of the film. But if you like a quiet crime drama, this is for you. Not a movie I would see again."
An aimless man who seems to be just shuffling through life with no purpose or concern finds himself in prion for a crime he didn't commit. While there, his cellmate tells him that he needs purpose in life, and also, that since he's done the time, he might as well do the crime. So, upon getting released, he decides to actually rob the bank he's already served time for supposedly robbing. Due to some plot points, he also finds himself acting as the male lead in a production of Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard where he also tries to woo the play's female lead.
This is a pretty decent set up, and I really wanted to like this little rom com/hest hybird, but overall, this is just a flat, slow, miosfire that seems mostly devoid of heart and soul. The music, a nice soul score, is at least nice, and the camera work is decent, but the film just doesn't have enough push to make it worthwhile.
James Caan (as the cellmate) and Vera Farmiga (as the female lead) try their best, and do a decent job of giving the film some weight and life, but it's not quite enough. There's also some okay work from Bill Duke and Peter Stormare, but they are also not able to quite save the film. You'd think that given his reputation for being dry, dull, and lifeless that Keanu Reeves would be awesome as Henry, since he, like the character, seems to just sleepwalk through life, but instead he's merely okay, and just more bland. He does try though, or at least it seems that way.
All in all, this started out promising, but really failed to deliver, ending up instead as a generic film with lots of potential going to waste. See it if you want, but only if you feel you must.
"If you've done the time, do the crime."
Released from prison for a crime he didn't commit, an ex-con targets the same bank he was sent away for robbing.
Henry's Crime is a dark comedy that actually carries a fairly good afterburn. The story is solid, the characters are unusual, and the setting in Buffalo, NY is appropriately dark and dank. This is a tale of how people react to their own personalities, moving through the world seemingly oblivious to those around them, afraid to create dreams much less go after them.
Working the night shift as a toll collector on a lonely stretch of highway in Buffalo, New York, Henry (Keanu Reeves) is a man seemingly without ambition, dreams or purpose; a man sleepwalking his way through life. He gets his wakeup call early one morning when he becomes an unwitting participant in an ill-conceived bank heist. Rather than give up the names of the real culprits, Henry takes the fall and goes to jail. There, he meets the irrepressible Max (James Caan), a con man who's grown far too comfortable with the familiarity and security of his 'idyllic' life behind bars, but one who also helps plant an idea in Henry's mind which will change his life forever: for a man to find his purpose, he must first have a dream. Upon his release one year later, Henry finds his purpose. Having done the time, he decides he may as well do the crime. Discovering a long forgotten bootlegger's tunnel which runs from the very same bank to a theater across the alleyway, he convinces the reluctant Max to file for his long overdue parole -- and then recruits his former cellmate to help stage a robbery. By turns wry, off-beat, and simply hilarious, Henry's Crime is the heartwarming story of a man who finds his purpose in life. And then finds his destiny.
Malcolm Venville directs this plodding venture written by Sacha Gervasi, David White, and Stephen Hamel. Much of the plot is rather silly but that seems somehow proper for a character as bland as Henry (played with appropriate flatness by Reeves). Farmiga and Caan add the sparkle that keeps the boat afloat. Just when viewers are about to groan over this story, it reminds everyone of some of the people who are sleepwalking through life, whether blandly or anxiously, and by film's end the importance of dreams and an appreciation of the events that make our lives interesting and quirky provides some valuable food for thought.
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