Greetings valued Dan's Movie Report and Action-Flix.com readers. On a whim and due to the fact that one of my favorite actresses Famke Jannsen is in it, I checked out the 2021 Saban Films release 'The Vault'. This is not the same as the 2017 film with the same name, starring James Franco. The 2017 film is about 20 minutes shorter, although both films revolve around some of the same themes, this one is far more thought out, and has no supernatural elements.
Obvious comparisons to the big budget 'Ocean's 11' series of films will be made, however what is interesting is, given the setting, a backdrop of 2010 Madrid, pre- ultra high tech, pre-drone, much of this film's revealed science is quite plausible.
The film opens in 2009 with Liam Cunningham as Walter captaining a salvage mission off the cost of Spain to locate treasure in the sea. Actually the film-makers including Director Jaume Balagueró take their time to establish the connection between past events and present day. The treasure is taken and sealed in an vault in Madrid.
Then the opening credits roll and the team is assembled as we fast forward to 2010. Freddie Highmore as Thom and Astrid Bergès-Frisbey as Lorraine are the main characters in the vault maneuvering process though the entire team plays an important part. Revealing other characters and their role will basically spoil the plot, which I will not do. Suffice to say all of the acting is really solid, the movie plays itself quite seriously and The head of security at the bank and the CEO of the bank are not portrayed as the bumbling idiots as in so many other films.
The movie is really riviting, the nearly 2 hour movie flies by with a dialogue intensive explanation, followed by action. What is great is that 'The Vault' seems to know that an episode of 'Numbers' provides a solid back science, yet they can expand it to the tense action over the course of two hours.
The bank vault itself it quite interesting, always providing puzzles and forcing the team to come up with solutions. I like the fact that things go wrong, again, no spoilers!
The team is forced to find creative ways to enter the vault, including ladders, zip lines, and due to the fact that their ingress occurs during the day, we get to see everything, no dark muddy scenes in the shadows! Great work to the camera people and prop-makers!
Incidentally Famke only plays a minor role here as the friend of Walter and is seen in the beginning, a short time in the middle and end, no matter, this is a great film. On IMDB there is listed a series of 6 writers, normally that is a sign that the plot has been reworked and not always good, this time it works. I am sure that some technological advice was added to make things plausible.
Camera work, lighting, editing and the rock soundtrack spice things up. The entire cast and crew is to be commended, the movie is great and ends in a way that could possible lend itself to a second film. The question arises here of rewatchablilty, I watched 'Ocean's 11' one time, as once you see it, the process is just not as entertaining. Heist movies are tricky with regards to inherent long term watching multiple times.
As much as I love the film, I can suggest a definite rent, as the film once you watch it carefully and uninterrupted you will have the sense of satisfaction. I find that although you may get out a bit more upon second watching. unless you live in a home filled with distractions, it is not needed. That said if they ever put out a detailed Blu-Ray with behind the scenes, deleted scenes, director commentary etc... and such, it may be worth it. 'The Vault' from Saban Films rates a very strong 8.5 out of 10.
For further information: https://www.sabanfilms.com/