Tuesday, January 16, 2024


I'm a sucker for heist films, but even for me Lift is a mixed bag with questionable casting choices and some notable plot issues. Playing against type, a toned-down Kevin Hart stars as super-thief Cyrus. After successfully staging a two-part theft in both Venice and London, and under pressure from Interpol, Cyrus and his team are recruited by Agent Abby Gladwell (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) to steal from a terrorist moving a half-billion dollars in gold to buy a device capable of creating natural disasters all over the world from a secret hacker collective.

Given her past romantic fling with Cyrus, Abby isn't exactly thrilled by her assignment. The rest of the team mainly consists of one-note characters such as Vincent D'Onofrio as a "master" of disguise (the joke being none of his disguises are any good), Úrsula Corberó as an unflappable pilot, Billy Magnussen as the over-enthusiastic safecracker, Viveik Kalra as the cowardly engineer, and Kim Yun Jee as the hacker (because you always need one in movies like this).

Other characters include Abby's shitbag of a boss (Sam Worthington) who comes up with this bizarre pairing despite her objections, Jean Reno as terrorist Lars Jorgenson who mostly glares and people, Torchwood's Burn Gorman as the most notable of Jorgenson's mercenaries, David Proud as another recruit for the heist whose main skill is annoying people, and Oli Green as a ridiculous billionaire whose party plane (with a giant LED board on the bottom which exists solely to write the script out of a dead end) is borrowed by the group for the heist.

With Hart in serious mode, the script plays into the conventions of the genre with the team's unorthodox plan involving stealing the gold from the terrorist while in transport aboard a jet with plenty of problems to be solved on the fly and plot twists thrown in. The Cyrus/Abby relationship is central to the plot but its awkward as hell, especially as the actors seem unresolved at how to play it on screen, as is Worthington in a thankless role of being a bastard who puts lives in danger multiple times for the success of the mission and would certainly never have kept his bargain with the thieves. Even for fans of the genre, Lift could push your disbelief past the breaking point, although some may find some enjoyment as a guilty pleasure.

Watch the trailer
  • Title: Lift
  • IMDb: link

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