New York Times - 05/30/2003
"...[A] sleek, ticking remake....[The film] puts together the familiar elements with an impressive skill and considerable wit....[With] impeccable timing, steady kinetic drive and superbly choreographed chase sequences..."
Los Angeles Times - 05/30/2003
"...A fast and furious action-adventure...The film's big plus is that its director, F. Gary Gray, takes a relaxed, light touch with the proceedings while keeping it all moving briskly..."
Entertainment Weekly - 06/06/2003
"...Timing is everything in a climax like this, and watching THE ITALIAN JOB, you can feel the audience get in synch with every slashingly edited, technologically split-second moment..."
Rolling Stone - 06/26/2003
"...THE ITALIAN JOB is a triumph for the machines..."
Chicago Sun-Times - 05/30/2003
"...A slick caper movie with stupendous chase scenes....There are a couple of nice dialogue touches..."
Total Film - 04/01/2004
"[T]he eventual heist is carefully engineered by canny scriptwriters to pack in the core elements of any good JOB....[With] some sparky turns and a pair of great robberies..."
F. Gary Gray's thoroughly entertaining caper film--a remake of the 1969 crime classic starring Michael Caine and Noel Coward--doesn't merely imitate the original, and that is what makes it such a pleasant, wholly refreshing surprise. Mark Wahlberg stars as Charlie Croker, a smooth thief who orchestrates a flawless heist in Venice with the help of his mentor, safecracker John Bridger (Donald Sutherland). Together with his cronies--explosives expert Left-Ear (Mos Def), tech whiz-kid Lyle (Seth Green), adrenaline junky Handsome Rob (Jason Statham), and the shady Steve (Edward Norton)--Charlie walks away with $35 million worth of precious gold bars. But just when the gang appears to be headed to freedom, Steve performs a heist of his own, killing John and running off with the gold, thinking that Charlie and his mates are all deceased. A year later, Charlie has located Steve, who is gradually selling off the gold bars in Los Angeles. With the help of John's beautiful daughter Stella (Charlize Theron), a brilliant safecracker in her own right--as well as those adorable Mini Cooper sports cars--Charlie orchestrates a revenge heist that will teach Steve a valuable lesson about loyalty once and for all.
Thirty-two Mini Coopers were used throughout the film's production.
A trio of electrically operated Mini Coopers were used in the tunnel sequences, as combustion engines were not allowed underground.
Charlize Theron, Jason Statham, and Mark Wahlberg went to stunt driving school for three weeks during preproduction, enabling them to perform almost all of their own driving stunts in the film.
The production shut down the incredibly busy intersection of Hollywood and Highland for an entire week.
Screenwriters Donna and Wayne Powers screened the 1969 version of THE ITALIAN JOB only once before writing their script, in order to retain some of the original film's broader elements without being too influenced by Troy Kennedy-Martin's script.