Bullet Points: Marauders
In this edition of Bullet Points, I take a look at a movie that manages to bring together an action movie icon, a beloved television actor, a former professional wrestler turned Hollywood heavyweight and the dude from Entourage.
The movie is 2016’s Marauders…
- Tangled Web: Marauders gets started with a bang, as we witness a highly trained, high tech equipped foursome rob a bank and brutally slay the bank manager. The four men all wear Kevlar masks that look like skulls and their high tech gadgetry allows them to communicate with their victims without using their actual voices. Their identity is a complete mystery to the FBI and the local authorities but as the movie goes on we learn that there is some connection with the bank robbers, a group of rogue Army Rangers, a United States Senator, the President of the banks the robbers are targeting and a specific branch of the bank in the West Chester suburb of Cincinnati, Ohio. The motivation for the heist team is also bewildering as they are part Robin Hood, stealing from the rich and giving to the poor. And part vigilante, killing “bad people” hence the movie’s tag line, “The Rich Will Pay”.
- The Christopher Meloni Show: Make no mistake about it, even with a star studded cast, Christopher Meloni as “Special Agent in Charge” Montgomery steals the show time and time again in Marauders. This movie is a must see for fans of Meloni, who really gained an almost cult like following for his years of work on the hit TV series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Meloni exudes the strength and stature a man high up in the ranks of the Federal Bureau of Investigation should. He is also a sympathetic character as we learn that he is a tortured soul, having lost his wife (and a fellow member of the law enforcement community) at the hands of a dirty drug dealer named Velasquez.
- Supporting Players: While Meloni is Marauders’ brightest star, he is not the only star. Bruce Willis plays the rich and powerful bank president, Hubert. Hubert is somewhat eccentric and thanks to his wealth and position of power, Hubert has developed a feeling of invincibility. It is almost hard to believe from a fan’s perspective that Willis, who was an amazing hero in the Die Hard films, can pull off playing such an unlikable character in Marauders. But if the bad press Willis has received in recent years is even half true, maybe it isn’t that hard to see Willis in the bad guy role… Adrian Grenier of Entourage fame, plays the fresh out of Quantico graduate, Agent Wells. Wells is assigned to work with Agent Montgomery on the bank heists… Johnathon Schaech (Jonah Hex on DC’s Legends of Tomorrow) plays Mims a detective with the Cincinnati Police Department, who has some bad blood with Montgomery dating back to the trial of the man who murdered Montgomery’s wife. He is also a cop who has lost his way and a man who is dealing with his own personal hardships at home… And last but not least was Dave Bautista, who played FBI Agent Stockwell, or Stocky as Agent Montgomery calls him. Stockwell is a top notch right hand man for Montgomery and you really get the feeling that he would go to hell and back for Montgomery.
At times, Marauders feels like it is more of a “crime thriller” than it is a pure “action” movie, but when the action does show up it is intense. The high tech gadgets used during the bank heists sets Marauders apart from other films with the bank robbery theme. The eclectic group of stars that make up the cast of Marauders also deserves credit for making this more than your “run of the mill” bank robbery movie and again I have to emphasize how much Meloni carried this movie. The Meloni/Willis on screen rivalry is palpable and you’ll spend the whole movie waiting for things to explode between the two.
Now I will open the contents of my Marauders safety deposit box and share with you some Bonus Bullet Points…
- King James: At one point in the movie, Montgomery reveals that he lives in Akron next to Lebron. As a native of Northeast Ohio, I am required by law to mention Lebron James and the 2016 NBA Champion Cleveland Cavaliers as often as possible. So thank you Marauders for giving me a Lebron opportunity.
- Masquerade Ball: I would rank the Kevlar skull masks in Marauders just behind the ex-President masks in Point Break but ahead of the Silver Shamrock masks in Halloween III: Season of the Witch as greatest masks in movie history.
- Queen of the Ring: Dave Bautista is not the only familiar face to professional wrestling fans in Marauders. Former WWE Diva and Playboy centerfold, Torrie Wilson has a small role as the widow of the bank manager who is executed at the beginning of the film.
- Give Him Some Credit IMDb: Why does IMDb list Johnathon Schaech’s role in Marauders uncredited? When I first saw it during my preliminary research of the film, I assumed it was because the Detective Mims role was a small one, but he is actually in the movie quite a bit. Schaech is credited (5th to be exact).
- Ron Burgundy Would Be Proud: While discussing female TV reporter Vanessa Adler with Wells, Stockwell mentions her big tits. When Wells mentions that she also writes for one of the local papers, Stockwell admits to only knowing her for her big tits. I haven’t seen a female reporter objectified like that in a movie since the days of Ron Burgundy and the Channel 4 News Team.