Sexy Beast ★★★½

2017 movie viewings, #128. Watched during a recent binge on caper movies I went through one week last August, so I'm keeping my write-ups of all of them brief. You can effectively think of this as two separate films stitched together; the first, which actually lasts for the first 75 percent of the running time, is an astounding character study of a true monster, a psychopathic crook played with ferocious intensity by Ben Kingsley who is doing everything in his power to convince his old partner to come out of retirement for one last big score, a flabbergasting portrayal but that technically has nothing to do with actual heist films; then the second part, lasting for the last quarter of the film, is the heist itself, which falls flat on its face for having no complications and with there being nothing at stake. To be frank, it feels like that last part was artificially tacked on to this film just to have the excuse to make the first part; and that's a shame, because the heist itself is not technically necessary in order for the character study of the crooks to exist, and this would've been an unforgettable stunner if they had simply ended the film after the infamous climax between Kingsley and his fellow thieves at the 75-percent mark. 3 1/2 stars for the movie as a whole, but 5-plus for just the first half.

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