Hey gang, Valkor here. I don’t always walk into a film looking to bash it; I mean there are some films that going in, I really, truly wanted to like. But there’s just so much bad about them that it can’t be helped. The next film up on the chopping block, 7 Minutes, somewhat, sorta fits that bill. In short, I liked it but there’s a lot of bad that I can’t help but point it out. Major spoilers ahead.
7 Minutes is a parallel of the same story, which puts the focus on three friends – Sam (Luke Mitchell), Owen (Zane Holtz) and Mike (Jason Ritter), whose attempt to rob a bank goes horribly wrong. The trio goes in, masks on and guns at the ready. And they have all of 7 minutes to get in and out before the police arrive. But things start to grow more complex as the clock’s ticking away; at first the bank owner realizes who Sam is, a cop enters, then a new player enters the fold and people wind up dead. Total chaos and not as planned!
Running alongside the 7 minutes of bank robbing are flashbacks that pieces together how everyone is involved. It all starts with Sam, who is just about down on his luck; he has a wife who is pregnant, living in a dump of a neighborhood and he was just laid off from his job. But his brother Mike steps in and hooks him up with a job selling dope. Sam brings in his bestfriend Owen, who was recently let out of jail. And hey, he can also use the extra cash. Mike is the point man with the drug dealer name Doug (Chris Soldevilla); Doug sets up the trio with some Molly to sell and looks to get paid. Unfortunately as the guys make their way, a police car tails them and Owen panics. And the first opportunity he gets, he flushes the stash. And it sucks to be him though since the cops had no interest in the trio. Now they’re out the drugs and Doug is looking to get his money. Mike devises a plan to rob his uncle, who runs the local bank and was already dealing dirty with the bank’s money. And it would be enough to pay back Doug and net a hefty profit. This then takes us back to those 7 minutes within the bank. Chaos!
Watching 7 Minutes, I’m reminded of the film “Pressed” in that they both start out so intense, but then does things that make the whole experience a letdown. Actually 7 Minutes wasn’t that bad, but it’ll still kinda tick you off. And I’ll tell you all about it in the TOV Breakdown.
7 Minutes is a suspenseful and enjoyable slice of crime drama; the plot, at its core is a simple heist story, but with the addition of the flashbacks, it helps to further flesh out the main event, which I thought would be distracting, but it actually helped to build it up further. Having the flashbacks in between the main action does a nice job in connecting all the major players and a couple of minor ones to boot, and the film presents both sides seamlessly without feeling disjointed. I was actually surprised at how the jumping back and forth between past and present works so well, especially in the pacing department, which flows so well. The action is nicely balanced with the drama and the performances are all-around well done. But If I had to choose a favorite? Hmmm… I can’t really choose. I thought Luke Mitchell killed it as Sam, while Zane Holtz should have been given more lines and things to do as Owen. Kris Kristofferson made for a nice cameo and it would have been great to have seen a bit more of him. Overall me thinks you’ll more than likely enjoy “7 Minutes”, though there are a couple of instances that might turn you off…
First up are the minor characters that show up later in the story or I should point the finger at one character - Jerome the cop (Brandon Hardesty); it would have been so much smarter to just have him on the scene at that moment the trio went into the bank, because he looks like the kind of cop who was waiting for this one big break to prove he’s awesome. Instead, his reason for being there is because the woman he wants to bang blurted it out in a drunken rage. Next, and this is the film’s biggest misstep and it goes back to Jerome. So Jerome is on the scene just as the dudes go into the bank. Now it’s stated time and time again that to complete the job, it’ll take all of 7 minutes before the police show up. So why does it take that long if a cop is already on the scene and he’s already called it in? Shouldn’t that have shortened the time by like 3 minutes? Next up, when the entire squad of cops eventually arrives, they cover the entire perimeter of the building… except the back! Are you kidding!? How does that work where there are no cops stationed at the FIRST place a criminal would go if held up inside a building? Finally, Tuckey’s story (Kevin Gage) would have worked better minus him kidnapping Sam’s girlfriend Kate (Levin Rambin); sure he needed the leverage to motivate Sam to let him in on the scheme. But ultimately he could have simply shown up, started shooting up the place and taken the money with the quickness.
7 Minutes is available now on digital VOD and DVD. And while I give it a few jabs in “The Bad” section, it’s still a pretty good heist film, with great use of flashbacks mixed in with the main story. I’d recommend it for a Saturday night chill flick. And out of TOV 5 stars, I’m giving 7 Minutes a 3.5.