Rob the Mob Movie Review
It's a story we've seen many times before in the movies: a pair of idiots decide to rob the wrong people, and then they pay the price. Rob the Mob is more of the same, except it really happened.
Michael Pitt and Nina Arianda star as Tommy Uva and Rosie, who, in 1992, decided to improve their perilous financial situation by robbing various New York mob families with an Uzi submachine gun. The New York Times described their plan by saying "few undertakings were more ill-advised, foolhardy and just plain dangerous."
Fast-paced and to the point, Rob the Mob is a decent crime drama that unfortunately, despite its true life story, doesn't do a great job setting itself apart from other similar movies. The movie lacks the grit of, say, a Scorsese film - but it was never intended to be a mafia epic. It also lacks the quirkiness or zaniness that is sometimes applied to stories such as this - Fargo comes to mind - but it was never intended to be a comedy, either.
Sadly, that leaves Rob the Mob somewhere in the middle, as a straight laced production that tells its story well, but does little to leave its mark in the annals of crime dramas. The way the two leads fumble and bumble about during their crime spree practically asks for a Coen brothers-esque treatment of the material, but De Felitta refuses to go that route.
Thankfully, Michael Pitt turns in a good performance, and his chemistry with Nina Arianda is strong. Neither will win awards for their performances, but they are a good fit for the tone of the movie. Andy Garcia and Ray Romano are fine but underutilized in supporting roles.
If Rob the Mob has one distinct positive, it is how screenwriter Jonathan Fernandez integrates real-life events into the story. This isn't hard given that the movie is based on a true story, but Fernandez does a good job of aligning the story with the trial of John A. Gotti. It's not a major positive, but it's something.
Rob the Mob has a few things going for it, and overall it's a well done movie, but in the end, it's a story we've seen too many times before.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.