Henry Manning (Paul Newman) is the world’s greatest living bank robber. He has eluded the cops for 30 years. Unfortunately, this heistmaster suffered a catastrophic stroke which has left him a vegetable. While waiting for a new prison hospital to be constructed, he is left in the care of Carol Ann McKay played by Linda Fiorentino. This nurse suspects that Henry has been faking all along and he has. Carol just wants out of her dull life and tries to convince Henry to help her pull off a bank job that will leave them set for life. Dermot Mulroney plays the husband who is initially jealous of Newman then joins in the plans to rob the bank. The inevitable bank heist is played with clever tension as each move is planned minute by minute.
This clever caper flick seems somewhat out of time, like a classic film and I enjoyed it immensely for this reason. The best part of this film is the performances. Linda Fiorentino is still the sexiest woman acting today. It’s not about how she looks, but the way she carries herself is so subtly erotic she could cure erectile dysfunction without the use of prescription drugs.
Dermot Mulroney is decent as the p***y-whipped husband but is outmatched by the presence of Newman.
Paul Newman is the real star and he is prime form. After being found out faking the stroke by Fiorentino’s character Newman talks about “playing” a stroke victim. He recounts a time in prison, while sitting completely still a roach crawled up his face. The insect parked itself right up inside his nose. He didn’t flinch. He only hoped that a guard was watching so the moment was not lost. It’s compelling scenes like this that remind us why Newman’s career has been vital since 1951. Bottom line: this is a damn good movie!