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Anthony Nardolillo
Lisa Vidal, Jaina Lee Ortiz, Carlos Miranda
Writing Credits:
Michael Corcoran

The head of a secret organization assembles a crew to steal back artwork plundered by Nazis during World War II.

Rated R.

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
Chinese Traditional
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 92 min.
Price: $21.99
Release Date: 4/18/2023

• “Coming for It All” Featurette


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Righteous Thieves [Blu-Ray] (2023)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (June 4, 2023)

Can robbery exist for a noble cause? As told in 2023’s Righteous Thieves - apparently.

During World War II, Nazis absconded with lots of valuable art they stole from territories they took. In modern-day, neo-Nazi billionaire Otto Huizens (Brian Cousins) illegally possesses some of these works.

Annabel (Lisa Vidal) leads a secret group that seeks to recover priceless pieces such as these. She and her team embark on a perilous quest to liberate the art from Huizens’ estate.

Thieves covers territory already approached across a number of films. Just in recent years, 2014’s Monuments Men and 2015’s Woman in Gold took on similar themes.

Compared to those two, Thieves views the subject with a lower budget and less star power. Does this automatically make it a weaker movie, though?

No, but the end result fails to satisfy. Thieves avoids the gravity one would expect from this topic and tends toward a pretty standard “caper flick” framework.

In this case, “pretty standard” means “by the numbers”. While Thieves hopes to follow a brisk Ocean’s 11 vibe, it instead feels fairly limp and perfunctory.

Not that a movie about the liberation of Nazi-stolen art needs to come across as somber and dramatic. While the basic topic comes with a sense of gravity, the robbery itself can bring something more vivacious.

Thieves doesn’t ignite because it feels so perfunctory. It leans on all the heist movie clichés, as it brings predictable “plot twists” and trite cinematic techniques.

That means a score that pulses even without a logical reason to do so. That means a camera that never rests.

All this exists in a futile attempt to churn a sense of passion and tension. Unfortunately, this never clicks, so the end result feels tedious too much of the time.

Admittedly, I’ve seen worse low-budget thrillers, as Thieves feels competent, at least. It just brings little creative or interesting to the table.

The Disc Grades: Picture B/ Audio B/ Bonus C-

Righteous Thieves appears in an aspect ratio of 2.39:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This turned into a mostly positive presentation.

Overall delineation looked fine, as the movie usually seemed well-defined. Some wider shots could be a little soft, but not to a substantial degree.

I saw no jaggies or shimmering. Both edge haloes and print flaws remained absent.

To the surprise of no one, teal dominated the film’s palette, with the occasional splash of orange and red as well. While predictable, the colors seemed well-executed.

Blacks showed good depth, and shadows were fine. Some low-light shots could be a smidgen thick, but not terribly so. All this led to a more than competent presentation.

Similar thoughts accompanied the fairly good DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Thieves. This wasn’t exactly an action-packed mix, so one shouldn’t expect constant auditory shenanigans.

When appropriate, the soundscape kicked to life well. However, much of it focused on ambient information and music, so the soundfield didn’t dazzle.

Audio quality worked fine. Dialogue seemed natural and concise.

Music offered good range and impact, and effects followed suit. These elements contributed fine dimensionality, with strong low-end at appropriate times. All of this led to a worthwhile soundtrack.

One extra appears here: a featurette called Coming for It All. It spans 24 minutes, 21 seconds and offers notes from producer Jolene Rodriguez, director Anthony Nardolillo, and actors Lisa Vidal, Carlos Miranda, Jaina Lee Ortiz, and Sasha Merci.

“Coming” looks at the movie’s origins and development, story/characters, cast and performances, sets and locations, costumes and camerawork, music, stunts and editing. This becomes a pretty decent look at the production.

Despite a more noble cause behind its story, Righteous Thieves devolves into just another run of the mill thriller. Though not a terrible movie, it seems stale and predictable. The Blu-ray comes with fairly good picture and audio as well as minor bonus materials. Don’t expect much from this mediocre flick.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2 Stars Number of Votes: 1
0 3:
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