November 25, 2014
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Parker
Don Fowler
3 stars
Reviewer's Rating:

(Caper movie)

"Parker" is a better than average caper movie, where you actually find yourself rooting for the bad guy. Jason Statham plays the title character with a vengeance.

His father-in-law (Nick Nolte) teams him up with a group of really bad guys to perform an exciting, dangerous, complicated heist at the Ohio State Fair. The gang gets away with the money and then want Parker to put his share toward the next job. Parker will have nothing to do with this, so they try to kill him. They leave him for dead along the side of the road, where he is picked up by a farmer and his family and brought to the hospital. He has been beaten and shot, but he survives, recovers in record time, and starts out on his quest for revenge.

Novelist Richard Stark has developed an interesting anti-hero, a tough guy who robs only from "those who can afford it" and will not hurt you "if you do what I tell you.” He loves to shoot guys in the legs and is able to survive wicked beatings and gun wounds.

He travels to Palm Beach, where he has figured out the gang's next big caper involves a jewel heist at a fancy auction. The gang poses as soundmen, rigging explosives throughout the building. They then commandeer a fire truck and all the equipment and pull off a wild and crazy, if outrageous, robbery.

The rest of the movie has Parker and a savvy but broke real estate agent (Jennifer Lopez) teaming up to catch the bad guys and recover the loot.

Stick around for what happens six months and then a year later, followed by a funny postscript.

The movie is so outrageously implausible that it is fun to watch, never slowing down and keeping you wondering what will happen next. If you like action movies with a few twists, you should enjoy "Parker.” Rated R, with violence, profanity, brief nudity and sex.


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