Direct-to-Video Gold – The Trust (2016)

A giant surprise.  So this is about a pair of cops (Nicolas Cage, Elijah Wood) who pick up a curious lead during an investigation.  They learn about a giant vault in a criminal’s hideout, and decide to take a chance and break into it.  Movies like this are the exact reason I am able to justify dragging the bottom of the proverbial movie lake.  There’s no reason you would ever even begin to think that this would be any different than other direct-to-video Nicolas Cage movies (see: Rage); it’s sitting at a paltry 5.5 rating on IMDb, it got a DirecTV release before even hitting theaters, and yes, it stars Nicolas Cage.  I’m not saying that the man isn’t capable of turning in a quality performance, but he clearly has bills to pay, and he is constantly working for any project that will write him a paycheck.  At the very most, I was expecting a movie that I could make fun of, but what I actually got was a very fun caper that I found difficult to predict what would happen next.

1I would never have believed you if you sold this to me as a good movie, so I understand your dilemma as a reader.

I haven’t seen Elijah Wood pop up for some time now (I still have to check out Wilfred), and he actually ends up sharing some pretty electric chemistry with Cage.  Cage typically delivers either an Oscar caliber performance in something like Leaving Las Vegas or a slice of completely unhinged insanity like The Wicker Man.  With his performance here, he hits a sweet spot right in the middle, clearly having fun and adding his patented “Cage-isms”, but managing to keep it in the realm of plausibility for the most part.  It is the interaction between these two actors that make the film, and I had a laugh out loud good time from start to finish; there is a difference between laughing AT a movie and laughing WITH a movie, and The Trust is definitely the latter.

2And THIS scene!

Because I knew nothing about this, I never could pinpoint exactly where it was going.  I didn’t even read the plot synopsis, so I thought this might just be a buddy cop movie, based on how this opened.  Because it’s so under the radar and details on this won’t likely be spoiled for you, your brain is constantly firing on all cylinders, imagining every possible scenario on how things can go wrong and how this plan will fail.  If you’re a fan of Nicolas Cage, then obviously this is a must see, but even if you’re not, I would still give this a glowing recommendation.  I know we are only in April, but I truly believe that this is the surprise movie of the year for me.

The Trust (2016) ****

– Critic for Hire

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