*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Disillusioned and bored with his job a Las Vegas officer’s attention is brought to a large bail amount paid in cash, this leads him to a purpose built safe room that with the help of his employee they decide to steal the content.
Directed by Alex Brewer’s The Trust, I’ll say this up front, works thankfully due to some smart casting. Nicolas Cage’s performance as Jim Stone is a return to form. Stone is a witty, wacky, intelligent officer who seemingly goes by the book but reaches point where he doesn’t want to end up like his dad (Jerry Lewis). Lewis’ very brief cameo is a pivotal role, in as much as it set the stage for Stone’s motivation. Cage’s nihilistic Stone screws the tension tight, at times defusing it with quips at Waters’ (Elijah Wood) heart pounding expense. Wood’s washed out character with a conscious Waters is swept along as the two Evidence Management unit officers, fed up with trying to make ends meet plan a heist.
The film opens with Waters banging a prostitute and later deliberating how much money to leave. Don’t expect the bright lights glitz of the Vegas Strip to feature too much, there’s none of the stereotype Vegas gambling, shows or sharp suits in the film. The film has a Training Day grit, the robbery they plan is in a run down apartment in the seedier neighbourhood outskirts.
Writer’s Ben Brewer and Adam Hirsch feed Cage and Wood some great lines which they delivers perfectly. The Trust offers partly a ‘day in the life of’ type of feel, with a couple of shoot outs. Brewer’s on location shoot adds the principles fine performances and Reza Safinia’s music adds to the fun. Ultimately, if the leads were played by anyone else The Trust may have fallen into obscurity, its Cage’s demeanour and Wood’s portrayal that really hold it together as the twist kidnapping ending, while well staged, is somewhat anticlimactic especially in comparison to the entertaining first half where Waters goes on stakeouts and Stone goes to work undercover at Vegas hotel making more money on tips than he does as a police officer. There’s also an amusing scene where Stone sporting an awful German accent tries to purchase a diamond tipped drill from Europe over the phone using a translation book.
Overall, it’s a well made film even if the climax is disappointing. Its worth checking out just to see the chemistry between the two leads and Nicolas Cage breaking out of Video on Demand/straight to DVD hell, back to cinematic form thanks to Brewer’s direction.