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The Brink's Job (1978)

Crime story based on the real armed robbery of the Brink's Building in Boston, Massachusetts, on January 17th, 1950.

Director:

Writers:

(book),
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Joe McGinnis
...
Vinnie Costa (as Allen Goorwitz)
...
Specs O'Keefe
...
Mary Pino
...
Jazz Maffie
...
Gerard Murphy ...
Sandy Richardson
Kevin O'Connor ...
Stanley Gusciora
Claudia Peluso ...
Gladys
Patrick Hines ...
H.H. Rightmire
...
Mutt Murphy
Walter Klavun ...
Daniels
...
FBI agent
John Brandon ...
FBI agent
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Storyline

After a long spate of bad luck, the little criminal Tony and his gang successfully rob one of Brink's security transports, taking $30,000. Surprisingly their coup doesn't make the press. Curious Tony checks out their headquarters and finds out that their security standard is low beyond belief. Now a really big coup is prepared... Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The greatest true comedy robbery of all time!

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama | History

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

8 December 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Big Stickup at Brink's  »

Box Office

Budget:

$15,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

During production, a Boston resident was paid to remove the air conditioner from his window so they could film on that particular street for a shot. The next day when they arrived to continue filming, every window on the street had an air conditioner. See more »

Goofs

While Pino and driver Banfield remained in the getaway car, seven other men entered the building at 6:55 PM. See more »

Quotes

Stanley Gusciora: Your Honor, I can't do no 20 years.
Judge: Well do as much as you can, son.
[bangs gavel]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Da Corleone a Brooklyn (1979) See more »

Soundtracks

World Events
(uncredited)
Music by J.S. Zamecnik
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User Reviews

 
"To Brink's Tony"
12 July 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Words almost fail me in talking about how much I love this film, this very funny, very stylish portrayal of what was considered the robbery of the last century.

First of all it could never have been done earlier. J. Edgar Hoover was not a figure to be satirized before May of 1972 when he breathed his last. Sheldon Leonard who plays him here and has him get it all wrong about who pulled the Brink's Armored Car Robbery, would not have taken the role, neither would any other actor. No one wanted to be on that man's bad side. Hoover was not quite the figure you see Leonard play here, though Leonard is fine in the part. Books and films subsequent to his death still really haven't got it quite right about him.

For all of J. Edgar's fulminations about the great Communist conspiracy at work in the Brink's job, the whole point of The Brink's Job is who actually did it. Six very ordinary street criminals, none of them violent felons in any way and one fence who declared himself in on the job.

The group is headed by Peter Falk who should have been Oscar nominated for his portrayal of Tony Pino, the group's leader and planner. You see The Brink's Job, Peter Falk will remain with you forever. A man without complications and hangups, he's a thief because it's his profession. He does have pride in how good he is though.

Some of Falk's best scenes are with his wife Gena Rowlands. She too is a woman who stands by her man. No doubt they came from the same hardscrabble background in Boston's Italian North End and she's completely supportive of him and his work. In particular I love the scene where she's bidding him off to work just like any other wife who's husband had a night job. Don't forget your screwdriver, here's a sandwich in case you get hungry, the scene is priceless.

I also love the scene in the restaurant where he takes her after a nice score. Falk is at the height of his considerable talents as he tells Rowlands of his plans for the Brink's Armored Car Company.

What everyone will love when they see this film is how comparatively easy it was for these knockabout guys from Boston to accomplish stealing over 4 million dollars. This score was so big, it HAD to be the work of a master criminal mind. The thing is it was, the mind was just not in a body where you would expect it to be found.

The others in the mob are Paul Sorvino, Kevin O'Connor, Warren Oates, Gerard Murphy and Peter Boyle who plays the fence. But my favorite in the mob and in the film is Allen Garfield who plays Falk's brother-in-law and sidekick who Falk keeps around for laughs. They have an Abbott&Costello like relationship with everything Garfield touches turning to waste product. My favorite scene in the whole film is when they decide to rob a gum factory payroll. Poor Garfield accidentally presses the wrong switch and he's awash in gumballs. Falk's and Sorvino's differing reactions are priceless.

A lot of the film was shot in Boston which in many ways is a city that tries more than most to keep it's traditional look. I haven't been in that city in about five years, but I daresay you could remake The Brink's Job today in the same area.

But if you did it wouldn't be as good, that isn't possible.


21 of 27 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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