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Frank's Movie Log

My life at the movies.

The Silent Partner

1978 | Canada | 106 min
  • Watched on Friday Dec 18, 2020 via Criterion Channel
    C+: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Imagine you’re a bank teller and discover someone is planning to hold-up your branch. Would you tell the police? Would you call in sick? Or would you do as Elliott Gould’s character in The Silent Partner does and steal the money yourself? The gunman escapes with a pittance, you report the full amount as stolen and pocket the difference. A great plan, but what if the gunman knows you’ve done it and wants the money?

    That’s the setup and the film doesn’t squander it. The plot layers double-cross atop double-cross—some predictable, others not—but never feels forced or outlandish. It respects our intelligence.

    Mascara-clad Plummer chills as the psychotic thief. Gould’s towering stature and confident swagger make him less-than-perfect for the part (Dustin Hoffman would have been ideal) but his innate charisma compensates.

    The Silent Partner proved an entertaining watch. It just didn’t stick. I’d love to see a remake scripted by David Mamet.