Movie Reviews: The Ladykillers




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     Touchstone (2 hr.)
     A little old lady gets in the way of a major bank heist.
     Tom Hanks, Irma P. Hall, Marlon Wayans, Ryan Hurst
Bottom Line:


I’ll admit that I never saw the original "The Ladykillers," a droll 1955 British classic. So I’m told. But I do know that more often than not, sequels and remakes are usually bad ideas.

However, with the offbeat Coen brothers (Joel and Ethan) at the helm, I feel rather safe in assuming that this weird and irresistible remake is just as good, or better than the original.

"The Ladykillers" premise involves a team of bumbling criminal misfits, led by silver tongue eccentric Goldthwait Higginson Dorr (Tom Hanks), who is a professor of Latin and Greek, and uses those languages to befuddle and sweet talk his way out of any situation.

Dorr, dresses like an advertisement for KFC chicken, and his gang, a hip-hop kid (Marlon Wayans), a demolition expert with a sever intestinal problem (J.K. Simmons), a chain smoking Vietcong guerilla (Tzi Ma), and a mentally challenged muscle man (Ryan Hurst).

The gang plans to rob a New Orleans riverboat casino. However, their finely wrought plan is thwarted by Dorr’s landlady, a seemingly innocent old lady named Mrs. Munson (Irma P. Hall). Dorr tells Munson that he needs to use her root cellar as a rehearsal hall for his Renaissance quintet. In reality the gang plan to use the root cellar to dig through to the casino vault next door.

In true Coen brothers’ mad-hatter style, the plan works, but Munson, proves to be too formidable. "The Ladykillers’" works at its best when it’s comedy is at its darkest.



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