|"Even Sting couldn't ruin it" Smaltz|
Starring: Pierce Brosnan, Rene Russo
Ah remakes; the chance to fix the problems of the original. Unfortunately, what normally happens with remakes is they fall into one of two categories:
- Disaster; or,
- What was the point of that.
Thomas Crown is a rare exception. It takes the good ideas from the original and develops them. They are thus; Thomas Crown is a bored billionaire who decides to spice up his life by staging a heist. He is then pursued by a saucy insurance woman and they try to work out how to exist together on opposite sides.
It’s a good story and for me this is the better telling of it. The characters are more rounded and the film is pacier. The biggest change is the heist itself. In the original, Thomas Crown orchestrates a bank robbery, whereas here he steels a painting. This seems much more in keeping with the character. The thrill is in carrying out the crime, and stealing a Monet is far more worthwhile to a swanky billionaire than money.
The film is helmed admirably by Die Hard director John McTiernan who keeps things stylish and tense but also humorous which makes for very easy viewing. Brosnan and Russo have excellent chemistry and you instantly buy into their relationship. To further smooth things along there is an interesting original score from Bill Conti and an excellent array of existing songs.
The only thing to cause any offense is Sting’s version of The Windmills of your Mind, the brilliant song from the original. Thankfully this is held back until the end credits so sorry Sting, despite your best efforts even you can’t ruin the film.
Rating: Top Work!