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Becoming closer to his dream of leading a normal life, a professional safecracker agrees to do a job for the mafia, who have other plans for him.

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(novel), (screen story) | 1 more credit »
2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Jessie
...
Okla
...
Barry (as James Belushi)
...
Leo
Tom Signorelli ...
Attaglia
...
Carl
Nick Nickeas ...
Nick
W.R. Brown ...
Mitch (as W.R. [Bill] Brown)
Norm Tobin ...
Guido
John Santucci ...
Urizzi
Gavin MacFadyen ...
Boreksco
Chuck Adamson ...
Ancell
Sam Cirone ...
Martello
Spero Anast ...
Bukowski
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Storyline

Frank is an expert professional safecracker, specializing in high-profile diamond jobs. After having spent many years in prison, he has a very concrete picture of what he wants out of life--including a nice home, a wife, and kids. As soon as he is able to assemble the pieces of this collage, by means of his chosen profession, he intends to retire and become a model citizen. In an effort to accelerate this process, he signs on to take down a huge score for a big-time gangster. Unfortunately, Frank's obsession for his version of the American Dream allows him to overlook his natural wariness and mistrust, when making the deal for his final job. He is thus ensnared and robbed of his freedom, his independence, and, ultimately, his dream. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

thief | prison | heist | money | criminal | See All (228) »

Taglines:

Tonight, his take home pay is $410,000...tax free.


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

27 March 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Der Einzelgänger  »

Box Office

Gross:

$4,300,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to Jim Belushi, on the documentary series Directors, Michael Mann drove the costumer crazy trying to get Belushi a Hula shirt for the scene where they are casing the last vault. See more »

Goofs

After Frank puts the transponder on the bus bound for Des Moines, the scene reveals the police car holding back traffic for the shot behind. See more »

Quotes

Frank: What are you doing in your life that is so terrific?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Il solitario (2008) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A thrilling, underrated gem ahead of its time
23 October 2010 | by (toronto) – See all my reviews

I've always been impressed by Micheal Mann's films. Starting with The Insider, I was intrigued by his camera-work and the use of music to compliment a scene.

With Thief, his directorial debut, he shows what movie fans will be in store for over the 30 years. Of course some of the techniques to steal are dated, but I loved the glossy, yet gritty atmosphere of the film. Tuesday Weld, was also quite good as Caan's love interest. It has an amazing ending as well.

The film is Waaaaaaay ahead of its time. And I was genuinely impressed with James Caans performance. This film is an underrated gem and should be viewed by Mann fans who liked Heat and Collateral.

8/10


7 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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A critique of corporate capitalism Crockett16
When Barry tackles his wife on the beach ramcamcole
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Fans of this film, get the Criterion release NOW! mountainjam819
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The diner scene and other bits and pieces... hankmcn
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