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Small Time Crooks (2000) - Plot Summary Poster

Plot Summary

  • Dishwasher and small-fry criminal Ray hits on a plan with his partners in crime to re-open a local pizza place and dig through to the bank down the street. As his wife can't cook pizza but does great cookies, that's what they sell. While the no-hope tunnellers get lost underground, the cookie operation really takes off and the team find themselves rich business people. But the other local money isn't quite ready to accept them.

    - Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>
  • New York City. Ray and Frances Winkler (the latter who goes by Frenchy, a former stage name) have been married for twenty-five years. Ray is a not too bright ex-con (bank robber) who has gone straight, going from one menial job to another. The one aspect of his former criminal life at which he was truly adept was cracking safes, something he taught Frenchy to do. Garish Frenchy, a former stripper, does nails, she managing to have saved $6,000 in the process. Despite being obsessed with the lifestyles of the rich and famous, Frenchy prefers this respectable life over the prospect of getting rich through larceny and in the process having to visit Ray in jail. That may all change when Ray wants to use that $6,000 as seed money (one-third stake) with his two even dimmer buddies, Denny Doyle and Tommy Walker, each putting in the same amount, for a bank heist. Ray's plan is for them to rent a recently vacated storefront two establishments down from a bank, tunnel underground to the bank and break into the vault, he guesstimating there probably a $2 million total take. They need Frenchy's support to do something with the storefront as a front, she deciding on a cookie shop as baking cookies is the one thing she knows how to do. As they work on the plan, they end up changing focus and bring in three other partners solely out of circumstance: Benny Bukowski, a former prison mate of Ray's whose specialty was insurance fraud (fires); May Sloane, Frenchy's even dimmer cousin, who takes statements at their literal meaning; and local cop Ken DeLoach, who has more a business sense than a cop sense. The refocused plan makes them rich beyond their wildest dreams. However, that wealth affects Ray and Frenchy in different ways, the latter who wants truly to be known as a cultured woman who not only is a benefactress to but a true connoisseur of anything associated with culture, such as the arts. That culture includes being known by her given name, Frances Fox. Meanwhile, Ray wants some semblance of their old life, such as eating Frenchy's specialty of linguine with turkey meatballs as opposed to anything with shaved truffles. This diversion in life goals may be a marriage breaker for Ray and Frenchy. As they proceed with their new nouveau riche lives, they may learn that crooks come in all sizes and shapes and are not confined to people solely from their old neighborhood.

    - Written by Huggo
  • Ray Winkler is a "small time crook" with big dreams. Recruiting his wife and some fellow bumblers, he leaves his job as a dishwasher to open a cookie store next to a bank. And while his wife operates the cookie store, he and his cohorts work in the basement on breaking into the bank. Wealth comes from an unexpected direction, helping fulfill his dreams. But there is an ancient curse about getting everything you wish for.

    - Written by Greg Bulmash <greg@imdb.com>
  • A loser of a crook and his wife strike it rich when a botched bank job's cover business becomes a spectacular success.

    - Written by Kenneth Chisholm

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