The Bank

"Extraordinary"

The Bank Review


Australians don't have much faith in their financial institutions at all. That explains all the beer drinking and the Abba.

The Bank plays out like a tribute to the great master of suspense, Alfred Hitchcock, complete with a string-heavy soundtrack. The story follows an intricate game of stock speculation, personal vendettas, paranoid delusions, and computer hacking within the corporate world of financial institution Centrabank. The company has recently hit some rough spots and CEO Simon O'Reilly (Anthony LaPaglia) -- an arrogant, cold, bastard of a businessman -- spends most of his days closing branches, laying people off, and getting heat from the board. To relieve the pressure, Simon hires math genius Jim Doyle (David Wenham) to help predict the stock market gyrations and thus put the bank back in the black. Of course, Simon knows Jim's software could not only save Centrabank's bottom line but will also deliver financial omnipotence to its owner.

In order to build the software, Jim is exposed to the underbelly of Simon's world. Lives are lost, fortunes are built, love blossoms, and revenge is served. Altogether, the film is a smart and suspenseful, a mixture of Wall Street and Pi.

With The Bank, director Robert Connolly has crafted an unpredictable and intense exploration of the predictability of the world when deciphered through mathematics and logic. The characters of Jim and Simon are expertly constructed, LaPaglia playing Simon like Gordon Gekko's kid brother. But the best part of the film is the slow transformation of Jim into a working cog within Centrabank, as he tries to keep his guard up against the power surrounding him.

Films like The Bank are rare these days. It's got a solid, crafty storyline, great directing and cinematography, and a super finale. If they'd had a better title, they could have taken this one straight to... the bank.

Screened at the 24th Annual Mill Valley Film Festival.

The teller windows are now closed.



The Bank

Facts and Figures

Run time: 104 mins

In Theaters: Thursday 6th September 2001

Distributed by: Footprint Films

Production compaines: Arenafilm

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 61%
Fresh: 22 Rotten: 14

IMDB: 6.7 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Jim Doyle, as Simon O'Reily, as Michelle Roberts, as Wayne Davis, as Stephen, Mandy McElhinney as Diane Davis

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