An insurance agent is sent by her employer to track down and help capture an art thief.An insurance agent is sent by her employer to track down and help capture an art thief.An insurance agent is sent by her employer to track down and help capture an art thief.
Connery's stardom rests on his ability to represent a man completely at ease with his masculinity and his sexuality better than any other star of his generation. There was always something a bit suspect about prettier men like Paul Newman (cf. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, 1958) while tougher guys such as Clint Eastwood seemed too stiff to be turned on by anything but seaminess (Tightrope, 1984). Connery, however, deploys his physical size, gruff and commanding voice, a glance both sure and sly and a stillness that can pounce into graceful movement at any moment to project a sexuality so confident it can afford to be nonchalant and playful. We are easily convinced that what Zeta-Jones wants from him, give or take a couple of billion dollars, is delivery on the promise of a rough good time.
Zeta-Jones more than holds her own here. Connery may be the object of her desire, but Zeta-Jones is meant to be the object of ours. The sight of her leotard-clad figure practising gymnastics in order to avoid the burglar alarm's lasers is more spectacular and pleasurable than the action set pieces. She emerges from Entrapment a full-blown star, flirting with such intelligent sultriness not even a man of Connery's strength can resist. Good alone but even better together, the two have an undoubted chemistry.
Entrapment aspires to be nothing more than a bit of glamorous nonsense, but although it has done all right by the glamour, it has perhaps done too well by the nonsense. Very badly structured, the story begins to feel ripped off half way through, its maze of double-crossings never delivering a narrative payoff. At the unbelievable and tacked-on ending, even a cynic might feel a twinge of discomfort at the lack of even a half-hearted gesture towards a moral rationale for the action. We're meant to root for these thieves just because they look gorgeous, seem meant for each other and are good at their work.
The fact that the combination of sex and capital as spectacle is thought to need no other rationale says a lot about millennial culture, and would make a good subject for another movie. But this is by-numbers genre work which has forgotten a few sums. Entrapment fails as a caper film because it neglects that fundamental ingredient - a credible plot, evidently something even the biggest chequebooks in Hollywood can no longer guarantee.
- Oct 2, 2014