I have always considered myself a Henry Rollins aficionado. I grew up listening to his music, seeing his interviews, reading his books, listening to his spoken word shows, and seeing somewhat small, but always memorable, appearances in films. The man brings a level of intensity and work ethic that I wish all artists would learn from. I was excited to see Rollins get a lead role in 2015 with He Never Died and was hoping to see more of him as a lead character down the road. Well, here we are only a few months later with Henry Rollins in yet another lead role. The Last Heist, directed by Mike Mendez, follows a bank heist that descends into violent chaos after one of the hostages turns out to be a serial killer. Trapping the well-organized team of bank robbers in the building, the killer is now picking them off one by one.

…more a victim of sloppy writing than incompetent directing.

When a film unravels a twist, it tends to be a “Holy Cow” moment; a sudden realization that occurs when the viewer feels some sort of emotion that they weren’t expecting or has their mind blown. If pulled off correctly, I consider that moment one of the greatest successes in film making. However, when you have multiple twists in a short amount of time, you run the risk of overstaying your welcome–and that might be The Last Heist’s greatest fault. Rollins’ does a solid job of portraying the sociopathic serial killer, Bernard, and the film certainly holds its own aesthetically. There are no jarring lighting complications or FX woes–it’s all pretty goodThe Last Heist is more a victim of sloppy writing than it is of incompetent directing.

The story is somewhat unbelievable and undesirable.

I feel as if they could have eased up on the number of twists and focused on the development of secondary characters. There are several moments where things are suddenly revealed about the people that we’re following, but it’s hard to care when we know virtually nothing else about them. There were also distinct traits of conflict that needed a bit of explanation. The bank robbers crew, for example, had lots of tension within it, and I wanted to know why. For a crew that has done multiple jobs together, they were definitely lacking professionalism during this particular heist. The same goes for the police in the film. It seemed like they weren’t really prepared for the situation, which would be believable if it was a small town heist, but not Los Angeles. This made the story to be somewhat unbelievable and undesirable at points and could have been avoided with more focus on Bernard, and not the other sub plots and twists of The Last Heist.

Perhaps being such a fan of Henry Rollins (and Mike Mendez’s first film, Killers) caused my expectations to be set too high. The Last Heist isn’t an unbearable movie; not by any means. It’s just not a terribly memorable one.

The Last Heist will hit select theaters and VOD platforms on June 17th 2016.

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