Winner of eleven Academy Awards including Best Picture, Army of Thieves is the quintessential picture that Hollywood has made great with its version of the story of Hans Landa (MATTHIEUS SCREIGHT) and his accomplice, Eva Braun (EDGY MCGUIRE). If Hans Landa and Danny Ocean were to have a daughter, she would probably turn out to be something like Eva Braun ( MATTHIEUS SCREIGHTS). A reckless, speak spontaneously-spoken, yet deeply earnest office teller who hide his secret mojo behind a convincingly chirpy German accent, he is an intense dreamer not a thrill-seeker but rather a sort of savant detective-thief who dreams of breaking into big secret German vaults where the wealthy and powerful store their riches. To complicate matters, he had a falling out with his long-term girlfriend, Fabiana Lupica (DIANA DE CAMERON), and the two are estranged until she gets cold feet and runs off with a handsome French businessman, Philippe Senty (ALEX ROSS). But when Fabiana's ex-boyfriend, Count Mathis (TYLES DONOVAN) arrives in town and becomes a key component in the investigation of the theft ring, everyone, including Fabiana, realizes they have more in common than either of them ever knew...
The film begins with brief cameos by George Clooney as a carpenter, Dan Aykroyd as a carpenter, and Billy Crystal as a waiter. The cameo is later played by Kurt Russell, and the sequence sets the tone for much of the film. But the screenplay by Peter principini is mostly credited to Dan Aykroyd, and the film revolves around his life, the heist, and how he relates to the character of Angel. In typical mainstream film fashion, Prince Henry (Christoph Waltz) is also a peripheral character, although he spends much of the time watching from a distance, like a secret admirer. The character is played by Joanna Marceau, who is basically one of the best known of all of Princes Christo.
The movie begins with the thieves being caught by a band of Russian terrorists who are holding them as prisoners. They are taken to a castle, where Angel and co-star Anne Hathaway do battle with the terrorists. This is the first contact that we have between the characters in the original tale and the film, and it foreshadows future events involving the heroes of the film. Eventually the group is rescued and the movie ends with a daring escape from the castle.
The cast of characters includes Angel, played by Christoph Waltz; Anne Hathaway, playing the role of one of the twins; and pre-teen star Nathalie Emmanuel, who is the only major female character. The lead roles were particularly strong for Anne Hathaway, especially during the second half of the film. While she is playing a young girl, the audience is introduced to her as an adult with a tough exterior. It is her ability to handle her anger while also having a soft, loving heart that makes her likable. In some ways she reminds us of Huck Finn, as she does not easily shed her inhibitions or allow herself be pushed around.
Another major player in the Army of Thieves prequels is the daughter of the main character, Sebastian. The film presents her character as a bit of a rebellious teen, as she is preoccupied with finding the thieves and capturing her father. However, she has an ulterior motive in mind, namely seeking out her biological father, who she believes is dead. The role of Nathalie Emmanuel, however, is the most difficult, given her limited screen time. She tries to justify her actions to the audience, but it is impossible for the audience to understand what motivates her.
Overall, the movie is well worth your time for anyone who enjoys conspiracy theories and action movies. For fans of the cast, the story is a fast paced and entertaining watch. If you have not read the book, the first few chapters are probably going to be a bit dull, and you might find yourself wanting to pick up a copy.