‘Band of Robbers’ is a love letter that doesn’t quite live up to its premise

Band of Brothers
By: 
FINES MASSEY ◆ FMASSEY@LEBANONDAILAYRECORD.COMN

With “Band of Robbers,” film making brothers Aaron and Adam Nee set out to write a love letter to both Mark Twain and the films of the Coen Brothers, who it could be argued probably learned a thing or two from Twain as well. The end product is a sometimes entertaining mix of “Raising Arizona” and “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer,” but it never quite lives up to the original premise.

The Nees took Twain’s Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer and throws them into modern times and makes them grown ups. Tom (Adam Nee, who also co-wrote and co-directed the film) is a beat cop living under the shadow of his detective brother, Sid (Eric Olsen). Huckleberry (Kyle Gallner) has just been released from prison, after having taken the fall for Tom for one of his schemes when they were teens. The freshly freed Huck finds out that things haven’t changed much when his welcome home party turns into a sales pitch for Tom’s latest foolproof plan.

Tom plans for he and his buddies, including comedian Hannibal Burress as Ben Rogers, will rob a pawn shop, where he believes Injun Joe (a creepy but miscast Stephen Lang even though the joke accompanying his casting is pretty funny) has hidden a clue to a long lost pirate treasure that Huck and Tom have been trying to find since they were kids. Of course, nothing goes as smoothly as Tom plans, and the newly formed Band of Robbers finds themselves on the run from the police and Joe and his thugs.

For the complete review, see the Weekend print edition of The Daily Record, or view the e-Edition online.

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