Our wildest dreams always connect to money in some way or the other. Just imagine if currency notes pour down from the sky as rain, or you get to sleep on a mattress made of money. Sounds fun, right? But alas, in the real world, this piece of paper has the tendency to make people do weird and dangerous things. Enter the heist genre. The major reason for the massive popularity of bank robbery movies is the adrenaline rush and thrills.
Even though those dreams last only for two hours, the viewers simply identify themselves with the robbers, mostly heroes, in the movie, and empathize with their social conditions. In fact, one could argue that these films are your best bet to see what your dreams would look like if they ever came true. But don’t be fooled by the name of the genre. Some films also offer nail-biting action-adventure drama. The streaming giant, Netflix, heeds to the huge demand from viewers to curate the best of these flicks. So, here’s the list of really good bank robbery movies on Netflix that are available to stream right now.
15. Bank Robbers: The Last Great Heist (2022)
‘Bank Robbers: The Last Great Heist’ is an exciting documentary that chronicles how the Banco Río branch in Acassuso, Buenos Aires, was broken into by a group of robbers using replica firearms on January 13, 2006. While the robbers narrate their experiences and reveal inside details through one-on-one interviews, we learn more via dramatic reenactments of the events of that day. Besides, the film even uses miniature sets, elaborate maps, and human dummies to visually represent how the robbers managed to escape with $15 million.
14. Hell or High Water (2016)
‘Hell or High Water’ follows brothers Toby and Tanner Howard as they meticulously plan and rob two Texas Midlands Bank branches. Although the robberies give them instant wealth, they soon realize they must pay a massive mortgage to keep their ranch debt-free. Caught between a rock and a hard place, the brothers resort to robbing even more banks, perfecting their modus operandi and figuring out a risk-free way to launder the stolen money. However, their actions attract the attention of Texas Rangers Marcus Hamilton and Alberto Parker, who are determined to bring the brothers to justice.
13. Army of the Dead (2021)
The sequel to ‘Army of Thieves,’ ‘Army of the Dead’ has all that is needed for a good heist movie, set in the midst of a zombie outbreak. After an escaped alpha-zombie turns the whole of Las Vegas into his zombie army, the military decides to bomb the city to the ground. That is when casino owner Bly Tanaka recruits mercenary Scott Ward and his team to recover $300 million out of a bank vault located deep inside the city. The rest of the movie follows a proper bank-heist sequence as the crew infiltrates the city, plans their approach, and tries to hit the vault. However, the added threat of a zombie apocalypse puts a spanner in the works resulting in a mega face-off versus a massive undead horde.
12. Army of Thieves (2021)
A prequel to ‘Army of the Dead’ ‘Army of Thieves’ can be considered a more traditional heist movie. Initially focusing on master-safecracker Sebastian Schlencht-Wöhnert, the film portrays how he hates his boring, mundane life. However, the safecracker is soon invited to an unorthodox safecracking competition, acing which leads to his recruitment in a bank-heist crew. Planning on breaking into the three legendary safes created by Hans Wagner, the crew set out on their almost impossible mission, with police officials hot on their tails. Although an out-and-out heist movie, ‘Army of Thieves’ provides its fair share of emotion and twists as Sebastian builds up a romantic relationship with crewmate Gwendoline Starr while being regularly targeted and ridiculed by her ex, Brad Cage.
11. The Vault (2021)
Set during the 2010 soccer world cup, ‘The Vault’ follows engineering student Thom, who learns of an almost impenetrable vault under the Bank of Spain. The vault is rumored to be holding the mysterious treasure of Guadalupe, and once an experienced crew offers Thom an opportunity to join them in their quest to break into it, the engineering student comes up with a detailed plan to do so when the entire country is busy watching the world cup final. However, carefully laid out plans always have a tendency to go awry, and the stakes are doubled when the crew learns that the vault sits on a large scale, which, if left unbalanced, will drown the whole room.
10. Bullet Head (2017)
Offering a different angle on bank robberies, ‘Bullet Head,’ follows a crew as they get stuck inside a warehouse while escaping the scene of a heist. With the law inching closer every second, all hope seems lost for the protagonists. However, it appears that the cops aren’t the biggest threat as a literally unstoppable killer canine gets hot on their trail. Focusing on the mindset of robbers post-heist, the film does an incredible job of portraying desperation as the group tries their very best to escape with their lives.
9. Shimmer Lake (2017)
At first glance, ‘Shimmer Lake’ is an incredible crime thriller revolving around a small-town sheriff, Zeke Sikes, as he investigates a bank robbery and follows three suspects, one of them being his brother. With the narrative unfolding in reverse time, we first get to witness Zeke and his brother Andrew’s strained relationship as the latter is alleged to be involved in a bank robbery. The allegation is soon confirmed as Andrew, along with the wife of his accomplice, loads the money in her car to keep it safe. However, a shot soon rings out, and Andrew falls dead as the screen cuts to black. The movie then reveals the person behind the murder as the reversing narrative even takes viewers through the heist planning and execution. A bank-robbery film with an interesting twist, ‘Shimmer Lake,’ is quite an enjoyable watch for heist lovers.
8. Paradise Beach (2019)
‘Paradise Beach’ revolves around former bank-robber Mehdi, who was captured and sent to prison following a failed bank heist. Once out of prison, Mehdi tracks his old crew to the city of Phuket in Southern Thailand, where they are making a living as traders. Determined to exact revenge and get his due from the robbery, Mehdi takes his brother, Hicham’s help and travels to the beautiful seaside city where all hell breaks loose. Primarily focusing on brotherhood and the camaraderie between crewmates, ‘Paradise Beach,’ offers nail-biting action scenes amidst incredible coastal backdrops.
7. Triple Frontier (2019)
Ben Affleck, Oscar Isaac, Charlie Hunnam, and Garrett Hedlund star in this Netflix original heist film as former soldiers of the U.S. Special Forces who have decided to use their sets of skills (that they have learned in the army) in order to make some money for themselves. Their plan is to step deep inside the jungles of Colombia and steal all the wealth of a drug lord who has been hoarding millions for quite some time now. However, the operation is hardly as easy as it looks on paper. While carrying out the same, these three individuals get into a rather difficult situation that tests their skills and friendship. This is a rather gritty heist thriller that does away with the technology and the opulence that we see in films like the ‘Ocean’s’ trilogy. Instead, it focuses on pure human courage, will, and determination.
6. Time to Hunt (2020)
Set in the midst of a massive South Korean economic crash, the film follows Jun-Seok after he earns his release from prison. A former bank robber, Jun-Seok gathers his friends, Jang-ho and Ki-hoon, and proposes to undertake one final heist before fleeing the country. The group targets an illegal gambling house and effectively gets away with thousands of US dollars. However, when the gambling house’s owners recruit a contract killer to recover a hard drive that was stolen along with the cash, the friends find themselves in a dangerous cat-and-mouse chase with their lives on the line, resulting in a fascinating and nail-biting climax.
5. The Last Days of American Crime (2020)
Based on the graphic novel of the same name by Rick Remender and Greg Tocchini, the action movie is set in the near dystopian future. The U.S. government is ready to broadcast a signal that will prevent people from committing crimes intentionally. Intertwined with this tension is an on-going heist, and the plot is certainly an intriguing one. It stars Édgar Ramírez, Anna Brewster, Michael Pitt, Patrick Bergin, and Sharlto Copley. Although it did receive a few unfavorable reviews, the film is still a good one-time watch, especially due to its explosive action sequences.
4. Wheelman (2017)
Debutante director Jeremy Rush’s pulse racing adventure-drama, ‘Wheelman,’ is a chilling experience for bank robbery movie lovers. The movie follows the Wheelman, played by Frank Grillo, a getaway driver in a dangerous and mysterious bank robbery plot. But as the plan progresses according to the timeline, he realizes a shocking fact: he has been betrayed by someone who knows everything about everyone in the scheme. Now, the Wheelman wants vengeance and tracks down the black sheep who stabbed him from behind. With the police at his tail, the Wheelman speeds up the hunt for his prey.
3. Yucatán (2018)
Comedy has the potential to uplift any action movie, and there are many productions in the past that have proved this point. ‘Yucatán’ is a Spanish thriller that also treads this path. When an old baker, who has won millions in the lottery recently, comes aboard a cruise ship, two white-collar scammers embark on a mission to steal this money from the man. The movie has some really funny moments, which mostly rely on a classier brand of humor. Furthermore, the story thrills you, especially because it is an easy one to follow. ‘Yucatán’ is longer in duration than many other films in the genre, but this is a nonissue.
2. The Highwaymen (2019)
Directed by John Lee Hancock, ‘The Highwaymen’ reboots the notorious ‘Bonnie and Clyde’ heist franchise. The FBI and its supportive wings, to their maximum capacity, tail one of the most notorious criminals in history, but in vain. The authorities have no other options except to bring in two former Texas Rangers: Frank Hamer and Maney Gault, played by Kevin Costner and Woody Harrelson, to get the job done.
The cop duo is quite famous for their instincts and old school methods. They are commissioned as special investigators by a consortium of banks that are determined to end the robbery spree that took its toll on the lives of 13 cops and numerous bank vaults.
1. Coin Heist (2017)
Written and directed by Emily Hagins, this film is the story of four school students who join forces and plan a major heist in order to save their school. The four children in question are each of quite different dispositions. While one of them is a talented athlete, the other is great at studies. One excels with computers, while the fourth member is the perfect example of a slacker.
The best thing about the film is that despite the characters being described in such a fashion, each of these teenagers is well-rounded and has an interesting back story. Each protagonist is someone who needs to be taken seriously while watching the film. These kids have planned to rob the U.S. Mint, as they have come to know that this place manufactures around one million coins every thirty seconds. ‘Coin Heist’ boasts of equal measures of thrill and drama, while also asking some important ethical and moral questions.
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