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American Animals

2018 / 116m - USA
American Animals poster

A pleasant heist flick. What sells this film is the mix of narrative cinema and documentary interludes, certainly when the stories of the different parties don't really match up. It's interesting to see how this adds a level of realism while underscoring the frailty of the memories of the people involved.

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Spencer and Warren want more out of their lives. They're decent students who do well in society, but they are bored by the lives that have been carved out for them. And so they decide to plan a heist. Their university has some rare and valuable books on display, with only an old librarian taking care of them. An ideal target.

The performances are pretty good, the pacing on point, and the lack of extreme dramatics refreshing. The interviews are a nice little touch and even though the film is a bit long (while still having to race through the final stretches), it never bored me. Makes me want to see more by Layton.