Mark H. (djmark) from MONTEREY PARK, CA Reviewed on 10/16/2020...
Angela Bassett, always a knock out. Possibly Brando's last film. (He's no Robert Loggia, but he isn't bad) Ed Norton is amazing. This film keeps you guessing.
George K. from COLCHESTER, CT Reviewed on 6/2/2015...
Nice little suspense drama here. Deniro and Norton make it worth watching, though not worth keeping. View it, enjoy it, then list it.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Deb F. from ARDMORE, OK Reviewed on 8/21/2011...
This is an excellent movie and I recommend it highly. The ending is unexpected and very good. Usually the movie endings are predictable and not that great. DeNiro and Norton give great performances as always.
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Chris P. from WICHITA FALLS, TX Reviewed on 12/16/2008...
Deniro and Ed Norton as Con-men. Awesome action sequences. Will have you on the edge of your couch. Deniro was one of the best con-men and Norton tries to get him in on one huge final heist. Great acting of Norton as a mentally challenged person in one part. Will they make the score or will they get busted? Watch and find out.
5 of 5 member(s) found this review helpful.
John C. (bookwheelboy) Reviewed on 12/4/2007...
Very intelligent thriller. Mametesque.
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
GOOD RATHER THAN GREAT BUT WELL WORTH WATCHING!!!
Mr. N. Carnegie | Kirkcaldy, Scotland, UK. | 02/12/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Aren't heist movies great? Warm and familiar like a comfy old armchair, they are one of the oldest and (if done well) most enjoyable film genres around. You can sit back at the movie theatre with your popcorn in one hand or at home in front of the TV with a beer, safe in the knowledge that some craggy, world weary old thief set on retirement will be persuaded to do one last job, with a rookie understudy whom he doesn't trust, on a job which you just know wont go as smoothly as planned.The Score is no different in that respect in that it stars Robert De Niro as a craggy old world weary thief, persuaded to take on one last high risk job before retiring. Ed Norton plays the rookie understudy scamming his employers by posing as Brian, a man with a disability and learning difficulties. Of course Robert De Niro's character Nick, always works alone and doesn't trust anybody but he is persuaded by his camp bloated old fence, Max (Marlon Brando) to work with Jack (Ed Norton). You see Max (Brando) is in up to his eyeballs in gambling debts and is likely to be forcibly shuffled off this mortal coil unless he comes up with the money, Jack (Norton) is working on the inside and Nick (De Niro) is the only man with the knowledge and the skills to get the job done. Like most heist movies it's a bit of a slow burn build up, it's all about building up the tension until showtime. Inevitably there are a few scares along the way and Director Frank Oz (yes that's right Yoda, or at least the voice of Yoda) does a decent job in building up the tension. Of course one of the great draws of this movie is Frank Oz's coup in getting Brando, De Niro and Norton all on screen at the same time in the same movie. Brando was in his day was considered to be the world's greatest living actor, a mantle De Niro has carried for the past 20/25 years. Edward Norton is not far behind and is generally considered by many (including myself) to be the greatest actor of his generation on the back of great films (American History X, Fight Club) and great performances (Primal Fear, Rounders, Keeping The Faith, The People Versus Larry Flynt, Everybody Says I Love You). Robert De Niro is of course reliably good but not at his brilliant best and it is Ed Norton in the dual role of Jack and Brian who has the meatiest part and adds some energy and vitality to the whole production. Marlon Brando's role however, is something of an oddity. It's not much more than a cameo and its something that he could do in his sleep, which is just as well because it looks like that's exactly what he did.If there are any criticisms to be levelled at The Score it has to be on the basis that it really is a by the numbers crime caper and lacks none of the originality or vitality of something like Reservoir Dogs and nor does it really take full advantage of its AAA list cast. The opening sequences whilst interesting, perhaps lack the action and intensity you might wish, although they do serve as an insight into Jack's MO (he always works outside the country, he always plans meticulously, doesn't take chances and is never greedy). That said The Score is enjoyable first and foremost for its excellent cast and the opportunity to see them share screen time. Secondly the last forty minutes of the movie where we eventually get to witness the heist are excellent; the heist is great edge of your seat stuff and there are plenty of unexpected twists and turns and an excellent climax. Ultimately though, you are left with the feeling that you've seen this all before and done better. It's more like that trusty old arm chair, warm and comfortable rather than new and exciting. That said it's an enjoyable yarn. Good rather than great BUT still well worth a watch."
The Score Scored Nicely
Edward Lee | 07/14/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Hollywood heavyweights Robert DeNiro, Marlon Brando, and Edward Norton together with Angela Bassett deliver very nice performances in this beautifully shot, nicely edited, and well directed film.The cinematography is beautiful and even without the cast, the visual elements alone -- the film noir lighting and atmosphere, the elegant and stylish set designs, the framing, and the editing -- make this a very enjoyable film.Although some reviewers comment that DeNiro is on "autopilot" or that he and Norton "phone in their performance," this is not true at all. DeNiro delivers a very smooth and appropriately subtle character without going "over the top". Likewise, Norton also gives a very good performance.Each character in each film should be viewed on its own merit. People who are disappointed because they don't see the "fireworks" of DeNiro in "The Deer Hunter" or Norton in "American History X", frankly, should go see those movies instead. DeNiro and Norton both are right on the mark for this movie.Marlon Brando brings comic relief with his superb timing and lines that land every time. Angela Bassett also is very good and shares the scenes nicely with DeNiro, which is no easy task.The heist is a genre that arguably has been overdone and is almost a cliche, but in this film, the direction is excellent and the editing, the pace, and the rhythm all support the suspense and the tension that kept me on the edge throughout.There are a few weaknesses, however. Although the music score is good at the beginning, by the third or fourth time the same melody appears, it stops being a motif and turns instead into a bit of a bore. A definite cliche that we can do without is the proverbial computer hacker.All in all, this film provides for a nice movie experience and is worth owning on DVD. A must see for DeNiro fans."
What does `one last one' mean?
Steven Hellerstedt | 04/12/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"There's a fence, a weary veteran safecracker, and an eager outsider. There's a valuable whatsit in the Montreal Custom House that's guarded as if it were the crown jewels. It ain't quite that, but it is a many-centuries old scepter that's worth tens of millions of dollars. It's got `last big score' written all over it. The eager young one has an assistant janitor job at the Custom House and is in the perfect position to case the joint, get the schematics, cut the video feed, what have you. Sound familiar? Save for a end game twist or two THE SCORE is pretty much the same heist movie you've seen time and again. It's a strong enough story that doesn't stray too far at all from the tried and true. What sets this movie apart is its cast. To say THE SCORE is actor rich is an understatement. Its three leads - Marlon Brando, Robert De Niro, and Ed Norton - have all been hailed the greatest actors of their generation. Brando plays the fence, De Niro the old pro who wants to pull off one last job before calling it quits, and Norton the neophyte looking for respect. Director Frank Oz wisely highlights characters and the `job' intrudes only when necessary. With a different cast I probably wouldn't have liked this one nearly as much as I did, but Brando, De Niro, and Norton are all on their game and a joy to behold. The special features includes trailers, a short `making of' feature, a commentary track with Oz and cinematographer Rob Hahn and three or four unused scenes, one of which features Brando and De Niro improvising a scene. The track lasts about four minutes and shows the two going through the same minute or so long bit of business three times. I've never seen two actors of this caliber building a scene before, and it's fascinating to see them hit the same marks - Will you do it? , six million, I always pay your fair - while shading each take differently. It's my favorite four minutes on the dvd. What the heck, heist movies have been done but they're fun. The characters in this movie are layered and interesting. A strong recommendation for THE SCORE. "
A Film Worthy of its TOPKAPI antecedent
Grady Harp | Los Angeles, CA United States | 12/01/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"THE SCORE delivers. All the ingredients of a fine escape story are here - an impossible technical theft, an exploraton of the minds of heisters, visual tension that is matched by a fine musically scored atmosphere. Add to this mix the bravado acting talents of Marlon Brando, Robert DeNiro, Angela Bassett, and the amazing Edward Norton and you have a terrific little diversion of a film that is reminiscent of that fine film standard TOPKAPI.
The twists and turns of these very real characters keep you on the edge of your seat, and what more can be asked of films of this genre?"
Legendary cast boosts fine heist flick
Mike Stone | 11/28/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is an interesting entry in the heist movie genre. Very few explosions or gunshots intrude on the plot. The characters aren't exaggerated, but are made of real flesh and bone. They don't have mannered quirks, and their shadowy pasts aren't rolled out in excruciating detail. Rather, we get subtly drawn character studies, where the past is alluded to out of necessity, not as a crutch. And the heist itself, the planning of which encompasses almost the film's entirety, is complex and logical, while still providing multiple opportunities for true suspense.The cast is staggering. How often do you get a chance to see the best actors from three separate generations together at one time? And they all do fine jobs. Relish this rare opportunity.The knock on DeNiro here, and frankly I think people are reaching when trying to find a flaw in any of his performances, is that he "sleepwalks" through the movie. True, his Nick is not a flashy man. Even though he owns a hip jazz club and is a noted thief on the side -- two supposedly glamourous occupations -- he is very low key. But that's a necessary character trait. He's learned that to be thoughtful and deliberate is the best way to ensure that his risky moonlighting job is not so risky. Watch him in one of his first scenes with Edward Norton's character: Norton's Jack, a young upstart thief, lays out his risky plan in all its intricate detail. Nick just stares off to the side, never making eye contact, but carefully considering what he's hearing without any distractions. You can see DeNiro in deep thought here. Pay attention to that, and I guarantee you'll find his character fascinating.Norton is DeNiro's equal in every way. His Jack is a know-it-all punk, a character we've seen time and time again. But Norton somehow manages to make him a unique creation. Jack's got a fiery intensity, and he's whip smart too. But he knows that he has a lot to learn, and is quite willing. And he's not a perfect thief-machine; he knows that things can go wrong with the plan, and even though he's ready to improvise, you can see his nerves jump when they do. Witness one scene where he's serving as a lookout for Nick, and all of the sudden a policeman emerges from inside a nearby store. Jack jumps into gear, quickly trying to divert the policeman's attention, but breathing and sweating heavily the whole time. The showiest part of Norton's performance is his role-within-a-role work as Brian, a retarded janitor. Brian serves as a cover so Jack can discretely study his target, the Montreal Customs House. Jack as Brian provides some of the film's funnier moments, as the audience knows that his stray comments are really subtle digs at his oblivious co-workers' ignorance and incompetence.Marlon Brando is lively, even though he's long from being lithe. It's uncomfortable watching this gargantuan man walk into a room (remembering the thundering physicality of his "Streetcar Named Desire"/"On the Waterfront" years). But once he's settled into a chair, and free to use his voice and his hands, you remember why he's generally considered the greatest actor of his (or any other) generation. Compared to Nick's conservative character, Brando's Max is an entertaining and eccentric creation. He's quick with a quip, and more than willing to tell those around him exactly what they want to hear in order to get his way. You can't get away from the fact that he's fascinating to watch. Too bad his role wasn't bigger; the film could've used more of his energy.Angela Bassett barely even registers. Well, to be truthful, she does fine with what's she's given. But I can't remember a more superfluous character in a suspense thriller. She has no function, either for exposition or motivation. Some would say that her character offers drama, in that her ultimatum to Nick gives him opportunity to re-consider doing this last job. But he was already re-considering his decision. So she's really just reminding him that he's re-considering! How redundant. It seems that the filmmaker's were just throwing a bone at convention, assuming that every movie needs a romantic interest. If her character were cut completely, the story would not change one iota.It was great to see a Canadian city (granted not a Canadian city that I'm overly familiar with) get such significant face time. Montreal worked wonderfully as the setting for the heist, it's old world charm providing interesting visuals; it's labyrinthine streets providing further opportunities for something to go wrong. Although, hearing DeNiro and Brando stumble through their French dialogue did provide some moments of unintended comedy."The Score" is not the greatest heist movie ever made. In fact, its story is quite run-of-the-mill. What makes it a quality movie is its patience with the plot (credit to director Frank Oz; who knew this ex-Muppetteer had such a class touch?), and it's legendary class that delivers a series of absorbing performances."