Criminals are pretty standard characters in Hollywood. While most people HATE crime, audiences are more than willing to sympathize with crafty crooks motivated by the right reasons.
Here’s our list of movie burglars that are just too incredible for real life:
From James Bond to Highlander, Sean Connery is known for playing badass characters. As Connery advanced in years, many thought he’d take lighter roles but he proved them wrong, appearing in the heist film Entrapment at the age of 69. Though the film was fairly well received, the movie is ultimately remembered more for another scene.
In this 1999 thriller, Connery plays Robert “Mac” MacDougal, an international art thief at the end of a spectacular career. He’s approached by a newbie criminal, Catherine Zeta-Jones, that has her eyes set on a score she can’t handle by herself. I won’t give away the ending but they “pull if off”… Oh, I guess I am going to give away the ending. In any case, Connery’s character tricks and manipulates his way to a billion dollar pay day all while romancing a gorgeous woman literally half his age.
Val Kilmer, The Saint
Based on a hit British television show starring Roger Moore, The Saint was a 1997 with Val Kilmer and 90s “it” girl Elisabeth Shue. While The Saint wasn’t a smashing success, the film has found fans through cheap DVDs and late night cable airings.
Kilmer plays a super thief that steals, along with Elizabeth Shue’s heart, a formula for cold fusion. Throw in some corrupt Russian businessmen and a few clueless law enforcement officials and The Saint is actually pretty entertaining. Without a doubt, the film’s highlights are the shear number of ridiculous disguises Kilmer employs, each named after a different Catholic saint. The movie is a little absurd at parts but Kilmer pulls it off nicely and the character is one amazing criminal.
Robert De Niro, Heat
Heat is a classic crime movie and Robert De Niro is fantastic as the leader of a hardened gang of armed robbers. They’ll rob armored cars, banks, storage facilities, pretty much anything/anywhere that’s worth money. Al Pacino also stars as the detective tasked with busting De Niro’s crew. This is definitely one movie where I won’t give away spoilers so just trust me when I say De Niro is one capable thief. Apparently, real life criminals agree. The movie has been blamed for inspiring countless real world crimes, including the infamous 1997 North Hollywood shootout.
Cary Grant, To Catch a Thief
Arguably the best movie about burglary of all time, To Catch a Thief stars two Hollywood legends directed by a one of the most iconic directors to ever pick up a camera. To Catch a Thief stars Cary Grant as a retired cat burglar that has been set up for a crime he didn’t commit. To figure out who framed him, Grant travels to the French Riviera to reconnect with old colleagues and romance Grace Kelly.
Grant was known for playing suave and debonair characters throughout his career and To Catch a Thief is no different. Of course, Grant’s character is also a clever criminal but that really isn’t as important since he’s retired. To Catch a Thief is probably the best movie on this list but this Alfred Hitchcock classic has also been given plenty of credit for being an accurate portrayal of burglary techniques.
Pierce Brosnan, The Thomas Crown Affair
The actors that play James Bond seem to get addicted to the playing charming crooks that never fail to get their way. Apparently, Pierce Brosnan is no different. In The Thomas Crown Affair, Brosnan plays a wealthy investment banker that assuages his boredom by stealing priceless art in clever ways. Rene Russo is the sexy insurance investigator sent to recover the paintings.
While The Thomas Crown Affair contains a fair amount of absurdity, the movie is a lot of fun. This is also the rare crime film that explores the motivations of its criminal character. Brosnan is bored with his comfortable life and steals out of boredom. Eh, it’s not a perfect explanation but it’s more than most crime movies give us.