Netflix has been delivering a steady stream of original movies in 2020. The quality has certainly varied, though. Coffee & Kareem was dreadful while Extraction kicked ass, though both saw healthy viewing figures. Now, their latest original is available, and it comes in the form of sci-fi heist drama The Last Days Of American Crime.
Directed by Taken 2 and 3 helmer Olivier Megaton, the film’s based on a 2009 graphic novel by Rick Remender and Gregg Tocchini and stars Michael Pitt, Sharlto Copley, Edgar Ramirez and Anna Brewster. The tale is set in a crime-ridden “not too distant” future, in which the United States government is about to introduce secret technology that makes it impossible for citizens to break the law. On top of that, they’re introducing a new currency system, which replaces physical money with cards to which amounts can be charged.
Small-time criminal Graham Brick concocts a plan to steal one of the charging machines, giving him access to effectively unlimited funds for the rest of his life. But when the media leaks the secret plan to stop all crime, Brick realizes that he has only a few days to pull off the heist, which may well be the last major crime in American history.
It’s a neat concept for a movie and its themes of sinister government control and technological dystopia will fit well with the current mood. Unfortunately, however, the reviews and social media reactions that are already in aren’t painting a particularly rosy picture, saying that the film is full of cliches and feels like a 90s-style erotic thriller. Apparently, the worst part is that it’s two and a half hours long, with the comments I’ve read saying that the long runtime really drags and the story could be done in 90 minutes.
Still, it should be stressed that the movie’s only been available for a few hours and the critical consensus has not yet settled. And besides, Coffee & Kareem is sitting pretty at 20% on the Tomatometer and was a wild success. So, there’s still hope for The Last Days of American Crime yet.