Heist (2001)

R  |   |  Action, Crime, Drama  |  9 November 2001 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 27,469 users   Metascore: 66/100
Reviews: 269 user | 123 critic | 33 from Metacritic.com

A career jewel thief finds himself at tense odds with his longtime partner, a crime boss who sends his nephew to keep watch.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mickey Bergman (as Danny Devito)
Betty Croft (as Patti Lupone)
Alan Bilzerian ...
Fast Food Customer
Richard L. Friedman ...
Robert Lussier ...
Fast Food Cook
Jewelry Store Guard
Michelle Sweeney ...
Elyzabeth Walling ...
Jewelry Saleswoman
Coffee Cart Man (as Mike Tsarouchas)


David Mamet takes this story of thieves along many twists and turns, some of which work and some of which don't. Gene Hackman plays the brilliant leader of a gang (Delroy Lindo, Ricky Jay & Rebecca Pigeon as Hackman's youngish wife), which pulls off complex heists for a despicable fence (Danny DeVito). After stiffing the gang on a jewelry robbery, DeVito forces the gang to go after a Swiss gold shipment and to use his nephew (Sam Rockwell) in the crime. No one trusts anyone and every step is shaded with the unexpected. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

heist | gang | crime boss | thief | swiss | See All (155) »


It isn't love that makes the world go round. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

9 November 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Heist - Der letzte Coup  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$7,823,521 (USA) (9 November 2001)


$47,239 (USA) (20 November 2015)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Joe Moore takes a taxi about 14 minutes into the movie. The taxi is marked "Cape Ann Taxi" with the phone number 617-187-0156. Area code 617 is for metro Boston. See more »


When Bobby comes to the deck of the boat he is carrying a shotgun in his hand. He almost immediately fires three shots, and a short time later it is fired two more times. The weapon is a double barrel shotgun that only holds two shells at a time. The gun is never reloaded. See more »


Bergman: Are you fuckin' with me? Are you FUCKIN' with me? Or are you done FUCKIN' with me? Because I've just financialized the problem, and you've just become more trouble than you're worth.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening Warner Bros., Morgan Creek, and Franchise Pictures logos are in black and white. See more »


References Gossip (2000) See more »

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User Reviews

How long IS a Chinaman's Name?
7 May 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

It's hard to go wrong with a story about clever criminals who must worry not only about the authorities but about the treachery of other clever criminals. Master thief Joe (Hackman) decides to call it quits after a profitable jewel store robbery in which his unmasked face is caught on camera. Trouble is, he's already committed to another, bigger job--stealing a gold shipment from a Swiss freight plane--for his fence & paymaster Mickey (Devito). Mickey won't pay off for the jewel job until Joe does the "Swiss thing." The film's first big flaw is that the animosity between Joe & Mickey, who are apparently longtime friends & associates, is never explained enough to justify why they are so willing to stick it to one another. This is a problem because Hackman's character is supposed to occupy the moral high ground (always important when everybody's a criminal) but, in the story, comes across at least as treacherous as Devito's. Fine portrayals by Hackman & Devito cover up rather than diminish this flaw. From then on it's all one twist after another, not all of which twist without leaving open holes behind. Will Joe do the job and, if so, end up doing it the way Mickey wants? Does Joe's supercool, Impossible-Mission crew (Lindo, Jay & Pigeon) trust him & stick with him all the way? Is Mickey's brash young nephew & protégé Jimmy (Rockwell), whom Mickey sends to watch Joe, really as cluelessly macho as he seems? Joe's heist plans ("cute as a pailful of kittens") are too complicated to work unless His Honor Judge Murphy is too sleepy to enforce his law. But they provide a marvellous venue for Mamet to work the lost magic of Welles & Hitchcock: developing characters through interaction & dialog. The supporting cast carries most of this task & does it very well, particularly thieves Lindo, Rockwell & Jay. Jimmy's pushy questions to the other thieves are met by cool, obfuscating questions in reply ("How long's he been with that girl?" "How long is a Chinaman's name?"). Pigeon is suitably hard-edged for this taut film, but a lone actress surrounded by so many tough actors has to bring something extra to stand out. Though he'll probably be best remember for "Hoosiers," and with respects to DeNiro in films such as "Heat" & "The Score," Hackman is the most accomplished actor in films such as this, whether as a cop ("The French Connection"), a private-eye ("Night Moves"), a technician ("The Conversation," "Enemy of the State"), a spy ("Target") or even an attorney ("Under Suspicion"). He's the top master because he rarely fails to score, even in films with plot holes, weak premises & contradictions, with his strong & convincing characterizations, the almost insane passion that lurks just beneath his plain Midwestern veneer. Fine production values, understated but effective actions scenes & an above-average music score help Hackman & Co. make "Heist" a watchable rather than forgettable thriller. Enjoy the portrayals & action but don't think too much.

25 of 32 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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most overused words in the script HellBoy13
Hackman and Pidgeon?!? diana-64
this movie is very unintentionally funny defcaliber585
'Money' TauntTheMoose
Script had holes you could drive a plane through Lajord
Just for those who think Joe was double crossed by his wife djw62
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