Reviewed by: Alexander Malsan
What is SIN AND WICKEDNESS? Is it just “bad people” that are sinners, or are YOU a sinner? Answer
|Featuring:||Gerard Butler … Nick “Big Nick” Flanagan
50 Cent … Levi Enson
Jordan Bridges … “Lobbin’ Bob” Golightly
Pablo Schreiber … Ray Merrimen
Evan Jones … Bosco
Dawn Olivieri … Debbie—Nick’s estranged wife
O'Shea Jackson Jr. … Donnie
Cooper Andrews … Mack
See all »
|Director:||Christian Gudegast—“London Has Fallen” (2016)—writer|
See all »
Los Angeles, the city of Angeles. It’s where everyone goes to make it big or at least score big. Wait, SCORE BIG, you say? You heard right. Los Angeles, as the film mentions, is considered the bank robbery capital of the world (at least 44 robberies a week occur on average). It also just happens to be home to one of L.A.’s toughest police detectives, Detective Nick “Big Nick” Flannigan (Gerard Butler) of the Los Angeles Police Department Major Crimes Division.
Our story takes place following a “supposedly” failed robbery attempt of an armored car. In the fallout of the robbery, however, the guards are killed in the process. Nick arrives on the scene to take the case. As the investigation progresses, Nick begins to learn about the robbers’ history and discovers a plot to steal discarded bills (before they are shredded and thrown in the dumpster) from the Federal Reserve Bank. It’s up to Nick and the Major Crimes division to track down the thieves before it’s too late.
I went into the theater hoping that “Den of Thieves” would be an entertaining movie. However, “Den of Thieves” tries to do and be too many different things—frankly, few of them are of much success. The film is categorized as a crime-drama (and certainly the crime aspect is prevalent), but then the film veers in trying to be comedic on a few occasions or sentimental (e.g., moments where we learn about Nick’s strained relationship with his wife and two daughters).
I’ll be frank, “Den of Thieves” is just a mess. The pacing is uneven, particularly in the second act where it comes to a screeching halt. At times, the dialog is somewhat forced and out of place. But what is of real concern is the disturbing amount of offensive content that permeates this film from start to finish: excessive and vulgar language (Gerard Butler has quite the sailor’s mouth), incredibly heavy and sometimes very disturbing violence, and sexual content—NONE of which add anything of value to “Den of Thieves.”
The action sequences are impressive, particularly toward the end of the third act and Gerard Butler plays the role relatively well, but that’s really about it for the film’s positives.
Vulgarity/Profanity: Extreme. There are over 101 uses of the f-bomb, 8 uses of m***r-f**ker, sh*t (30), a**-hole (3), a** (6), h*ll (2), d**n (3), b*tch (1), the Son of God’s name is used in vain twice (as “Jesus Christ”) and God’s name is used in vain once (“G*d-d**n”). Other profanity includes “p**sy” (3), “p*cker” (2), “screw” (1), “p*ss” (2), the n-word (3), “homo” (1), and “b*stard” (1).
Violence: Extreme. Police officers as well as armored car guards are seen being shot and killed (one guard is shot close range in the face). There are numerous scenes involving gunfights (including one prolonged, graphic scene toward the end of the film, which I will not disclose the details here). Characters engage in fist fights, other characters are hit, taken hostage, etc.
Sex/Sexual Dialog: One officer tells Flannigan he must be “getting all sorts of a** in that” (his suit). Crude references for male genitalia are used. Nick’s wife suspects Nick is having an affair when he sends her an accidental text, and she takes their children away with her while stating to Nick that she is going to find a man who “gets hard for her.” Nick has sex with a stripper to acquire information from her.
Nudity: A stripper is shown in her home completely naked from behind after sex with Nick. When her boyfriend comes home, she runs off naked (possible breast side view). At a night club, strippers are on display in very revealing clothing (some may even be topless (in the background). Other female characters wear cleavage-bearing outfits.
Other: Characters are seen drinking on multiple occasions throughout the film.
I found absolutely NO redeeming morals or Christian values that I could draw from this film. I advise that Christians stay as far away from “Den of Thieves” as you possibly can. Even if the content wasn’t an issue, the film just isn’t that good. There is nothing edifying or gratifying for Christians in this film. Do not subject the Holy Spirit to such an ungodly film. With that, keep this in your heart:
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. —Philippians 4:8
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.