Film: Bandits

Bandits is a romantic crime comedy released in 2001. Joe Blake (Bruce Willis) decides to escape from prison on a whim and takes with him Terry Collins (Billy Bob Thornton). To fund their escape, they rob a bank, which turns out to be pretty easy. The two start hatching a plan to rob banks all across the country to save enough money to flee to Mexico and buy a bar to live out their days in ease.

However, a woman (Cate Blanchett) gets involved and things become complicated...

For the 1997 German film, see: Bandits (1997).

This film provides examples of:

  • Badass: Joe. The guy knocks over a bank with a Magic Marker.
  • Bank Robbery
  • Brandishment Bluff: Joe uses a marker pressed against the guard's neck to convince him he has a gun. The guard then hands over his gun and the two use it to rob the bank.
  • Brick Joke: Joe hangs a blanket to split the bed, claiming he saw it in a movie. When Kate asks him how the movie ends, he says "with a wedding." The film ends at Harvey's wedding.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Terry, despite his numerous quirks and neuroticisms, is actually a pretty damn competent (and inventive) criminal.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Harvey is learning how to use special effects to set himself on fire when Joe and Terry first meet him.
  • The Chick: Kate.
  • Flash Back / Flash Forward: The film is framed around their final heist and a true crime documentary about them, which takes us back through the whole story.
  • Flashed Badge Hijack: At their first robbery that goes wrong, Joe and Kate flee in the cop car. The cop then does this to Harvey, having no idea he's one of the gang.
  • Genius Ditz: Harvey.
  • How We Got Here: The film opens with news coverage of Joe and Terry having a Mexican Standoff with each other in the middle of what appears to be a bank robbery gone wrong.
  • Loveable Rogue: Both Joe and Terry. Joe is the more typical example (a charming ladies man) while Terry is dorkishly endearing.
  • Love Triangle: Kate falls in love with both Joe and Terry and they fall for her as well. It starts to cause serious problems in their bank robbing schemes when they begin to fight over her attention.
  • Odd Couple: Joe and Terry. Terry being a neurotic hypochondriac and Joe being... Bruce Willis.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Again, Terry and Joe.
    Terry: Kate, you should choose. What's it gonna be? Mr. Action Figure Hero Guy? Or brains, and sensitivity, and a lot of other things I could name. So in other words: me or THAT guy?
    Joe: Yeah, good looking, or ITCHY.
  • The Smart Guy: Terry.
  • Threesome Subtext: Kate refuses to choose between the two and in the end she's standing with both of them at Harvey's wedding.
  • There Is Only One Bed: Done twice. The first time Kate splits a bed with Joe by hanging a blanket between them. The second time Terry takes the floor. Neither arrangements last long.
  • Waking Non Sequitur: Terry wakes up shouting "Beavers and ducks!"