While The Vault is an enjoyable enough heist film, it never quite steps itself out from being a paint by numbers endeavour. Its predictability hurts it, but there is still plenty here to have fun with.
When an engineer (Freddie Highmore) learns of a mysterious, impenetrable fortress hidden under The Bank of Spain, he joins a crew of master thieves who plan to steal the legendary lost treasure locked inside. At the same time, the whole country is distracted by Spain’s World Cup Final. With thousands of soccer fans cheering in the streets and security forces closing in, the crew have just minutes to pull off the score of a lifetime.
The Vault is a film that should have plenty going for it, a good director and a solid enough cast are all here, but it relies so heavily on taking pieces from other heist films that it almost comes across as homage. Formulaic heist films are a dime a dozen, but under the right circumstances, they can be great. Here though, all we get is something pretty standard. It neither lights up the world nor is terribly bad; it is just there.
This is due to the fact that there is never really anything on the line, the suspense is missing, and that is solely down to a lacking script. Rife with more near-misses than you could throw a hat at, The Vault gets you to the point where you just expect everything to be fine for the characters. The removal of any danger stops us from leaning in, from sitting on the edge of our seat, which you know is kind of integral to a good heist film.
Yet, this is a film that could be great, Jaume Balagueró and Daniel Aranyó give us some great direction and cinematography; you can’t overly fault the cast. But with such a stilted script, there isn’t overly too much that can be done. By holding back on giving us some proper action sequences, we don’t have much to give us something to cling to.
Equally, the cast is solid if unremarkable, and everyone plays up their characters’ quirks as much as they can. However, there are just too many issues with the script to ignore. Additionally, the location is never used enough to have it really stand out. Minor quibbles, yes, but it becomes hard to ignore when you find one after another.
In the end, The Vault is a harmless enough movie with solid performances. A film that is perfect for a lazy night viewing, comfort food of a heist thriller.
Signature Entertainment presents The Vault on Digital Platforms, out now.
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