The Destructors

Watch The Destructors

"They live the sweet life but they play a game of sudden death!"
  • PG
  • 1974
  • 1 hr 31 min
  • 5.9  (1,571)

The Destructors, released in 1974, is a gripping crime thriller that follows a story of robbers and a heist gone wrong. The film stars Michael Caine as the mastermind behind the heist, Anthony Quinn as the leader of a group of criminals, and James Mason as the head of the police force determined to bring them to justice. The film begins with the aftermath of a robbery in Turin, Italy, in which a fortune in precious jewels has been stolen. The Italian police are baffled, as no clues have been left behind. Meanwhile, in London, an ex-con named Scobie (Caine) is sitting in a bar, mourning the loss of his girlfriend. Scobie is approached by Quinn's character, who offers him a job on the condition that he recruits some of his old criminal acquaintances to carry out a daring heist – the theft of a priceless collection of jewels.

Scobie sets about recruiting his old colleagues, including the driver of the getaway car, Bluey (played by Nigel Davenport) and an explosives expert named Myron (Robert Culp). The gang meticulously plan the heist, and things seem to be going smoothly until a hired hand named Kessel (Mason) on behalf of the insurance company determined to protect the jewels, starts to put the pieces together.

As the day of the heist arrives, tensions run high within the gang, and even Scobie isn't sure if he can trust his fellow criminals. The heist attempt is dramatic and intense, with a few unexpected twists that throw a wrench into the plans. The gang ends up facing off against the police force and Kessel and intense car chase shots follow. The outcome leaves Scobie and the gang at odds and on the run.

The Destructors was directed by Robert Parrish, and is a thrilling ride from start to finish. The plot is smart and well-written, with plenty of twists and turns to keep the viewer on the edge of their seat. The characters are complex and multi-dimensional and the performances of the three main stars – Caine, Quinn, and Mason – are outstanding.

The film is set in the 1970s and the production design and outfits used for some characters, such as Caine, really showcase the era's fashion sense. The cinematography is exceptional, with some breathtaking shots utilising the surrounding city landscapes. The sound and music also play a key role in building the tension and elevating the movie's suspense.

While The Destructors is a crime thriller at its core, it manages to delve a little deeper while exploring the different characters' motives and personalities. There's Scobie, struggling with his past, Myron, a man obsessed with explosions and Quinn's character, Mourad, mainly in it for the money, but with an air of compassion.

One element that stands out in The Destructors is its non-linear storytelling. The film jumps around in time, with scenes from the present mixed with flashbacks to the planning stages of the heist. It takes a moment to adjust, but this style adds to the movie's overall suspenseful and intense aura.

In conclusion, The Destructors is an outstanding thriller that manages to eloquently showcase the mastermind behind a robbery, the ruthless leader behind it, all with the police's pressure increasing. The film's complex characters, thrilling plot, and excellent performances make it a must-watch for anyone who loves intense heist movies. It's interesting to note that despite being released nearly half a century ago, The Destructors does not feel dated as an excellent movie to watch today.

The Destructors
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 31 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    5.9  (1,571)