REVIEW: Coin Heist (2017)

Release Poster - Netflix
Poster, Cover – Netflix

The following is a quick review of Coin Heist – Directed by Emily Hagins

Coin Heist, based on a young adult novel by writer Elisa Ludwig, tells the story of how a group of students tried to save their school by stealing from the U.S. Mint. The heist crew in question consists of an extremely talented hacker (played by Alexis G. Zall), the principal’s son (played by Alex Saxon), his ex-girlfriend (played by Sasha Pieterse), and a smart kid (played by Jay Walker) who has lost his scholarship.

I love heist movies. I mean, I really love heist movies. I also really love The Breakfast Club. So when I heard that Netflix was releasing a movie that seemed to be basically The Breakfast Club with a heist movie twist, it’s safe to say that it piqued my interest.

It is a shame, however, that the movie doesn’t live up to its potential. While it does go for The Breakfast Club, it feels more like a couple of episodes of a cookie-cutter television teen drama than a movie. The antagonist is underwhelming, most of the characters are pretty uninteresting and stereotypical.

The heist ‘mission’ itself is as dull as the field trip the film opens with, and the filmmakers don’t draw any excitement from it. Heist movies need to be exciting or tense, even if this is the mission you have to complete. The filmmakers didn’t manage to make a dull heist mission into an exciting heist movie. I also don’t buy the premise that all of the kids in the crew would risk their future to save the school. Also, why didn’t the movie focus more on the principal? I digress.

Even just something as essential as the assembling of the heist crew doesn’t work. I think one of the reasons why is that the film doesn’t get you to care about the characters – at least, I sure didn’t. The principal’s son, who is also a slacker, was straight-up unlikable, and I think I only really liked Alexis G. Zall’s character. Also almost every adult character was useless and cartoony, and the security at the U.S. Mint was just awful.

Coin Heist is inoffensive, watchable, and there are worse Netflix ‘Original Films’ to watch, but that’s hardly a ringing endorsement. Coin Heist didn’t work for me – it especially didn’t work for me as a heist movie – and I think it’s a very forgettable movie. Then again, this movie clearly wasn’t made for someone like me, so maybe you’ll like it more.

4 out of 10

– Jeffrey Rex

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