Flawless takes place in a just-pre-swinging
London. About this time the Beatles are still playing the Cavern Club
and the youth revolution hasn't yet caught on. Instead the London of
this world is a somewhat stuffy, male-dominated and all too business
around a diamond heist in the world's largest (fictional) diamond exchange
in London, a hallowed and armored citadel to conspicuous consumption and
greed. Two very different but somewhat outcast employees come up with
a way to liberate a small amount of diamonds - just enough to live happily
ever after off of - from the supposedly impregnable vault.
One is the
first female exec of the company. She is tired of being passed over
for promotions for men who are not as able or worthy as she is. The
other is the janitor, who has been cleaning floors and toilets in the place
overnight for over fifteen years and is about to be put out to pasture.
rather shocked when he approaches her with the idea, however when his
prediction that her job may be on the line in the near future turns out to
be accurate, she signs on. However, neither one totally trusts or
confides in the other. And when more diamonds disappear than
originally discussed, the two have to decide how far they are willing to go
for their mysterious accomplice.
of the bigger problems with the movie starts at the top. Once upon a
time, Demi Moore was a very capable actress, but she's never quite gotten
her groove back since she wrecked her career on the rocks of Striptease
in the 90s. Her lead character of Laura Quinn is pinched,
humorless and a bit strident. This may even be an accurate gauge of
how this character would have been in the stuffy real world of early 60s
business - after all she is the only woman who has broken in to the realm of
men and she must constantly stride to seem absolutely confident and
competent. This fact does not make the woman any easier to warm up to
as a main character, though.
many of Moore's scenes put her up against Michael Caine, who nearly
singlehandedly adds humanity to this somewhat sterile world. (Useless
trivia fact: Caine had played Moore's father in her first major film role,
the 80s sex comedy Blame It On Rio.) Playing
the longtime janitor who has figured out a foolproof way of robbing the
diamond exchange, Caine sports his old-school cockney accent and pumps a
little life into the proceedings whenever he is on screen. His
character is consistently surprising and quirky in a world where quirks are
not allowed, and it even turns out that his motives are somewhat pure - love
and revenge over money. The role is nothing Caine that hasn't done
before, but he is always intriguing, even when the material isn't always up
is, though, a lot of the material here is quite good, just done at a more
measured and stately pace than may be necessary. It is a bit of a
snail's pace for a supposed action film, so that while you can appreciate
the plot intellectually there are very few adrenaline rush moments.
Even the legitimately exciting ideas come off as a little muffled and
Flawless' bad luck that the film is coming out within weeks of The
Bank Job, a similar but infinitely more stylish movie. This movie
probably has a more clever heist (in fact, that movie's heist was a bit of a
botch job), but just comparing the pulses of the
two films it leaves you with the inevitable reaction that while it has some
brilliant segments, Flawless is a bit flawed.
Jay S. Jacobs
Copyright ©2008 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved.
Posted: March 27, 2008.