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Movie Review: Steal Me


Jake isn't just a thief, he's a kleptomania, one who's addicted to stealing. Just to give you and idea, by the time he was eight years old, he had already been charged with 26 counts of grand theft. Nowadays he is 15 years old, and his thieving skills seem second to none. But strangely enough, he's not living it up somewhere in some nice penthouse or hanging out with chicks at popular night clubs. Nope, instead he hopped a train to Montana in an attempt to find his prostitute mother. And when he arrives? Surprise, surprise, she's nowhere to be found. So Jake continues to do what he always does... steal, of course!

In the middle of jacking a car stereo from a jeep, Jake sees a photograph in the vehicle of a picture perfect family. A mom and dad, with a son about his age and a younger daughter, all sitting on the front porch of their house. As he becomes lost in the photo, the owner of the Jeep happens along... and it's Tucker, the teenage boy in the picture. Jake takes off, and Tucker launches after him. The chase finally ends at a small area in the train yard where Jake had been staying, and upon seeing this, Tucker invites him out to lunch. I'm sure you know what happens next, because it's a total cliche, but yep, the two quickly become friends.

Steal Me Soon Jake ends up eating dinner with Tucker's family, but when Tucker tries to lie about Jake's background and how they met, Jake feels compelled to tell them all the truth. Needless to say, everyone is shocked, but Tucker's father, John, is also impressed with the boy's honesty about such a shameful and dishonest subject, and when Jake begins to take off, John adamantly convinces the boy to stay a bit longer and have some desert. Eventually, they even allow him to stay with them, albeit in the barn. Even so, Tucker's mother, Sarah, is uneasy about the whole situation.

Steal Me During his time staying with Tucker's family, he makes an impact on those around him. He helps Tucker to come out of his shell and get the girl of his dreams, the lovely Lily Rose. When the family's daughter shares with Jake that she too sometimes likes to take things, he tries to convince their daughter that stealing is most definitely not a good thing. He gets a job at the train yard to show others as well as himself that he can do hard, honest work. Oh yeah, and he also has a fling with one of Sarah's friends, a single mom twice his age. So with all this, you'd think that the film would in some way be at least slightly interesting. But nope, it seriously pains me to report that this movie is extremely boring.

Steal Me Of course, I'm not a real big fan of plain dramas either, but my wife likes them, and she thought it was just as boring as I did. Now, if you look at the movie poster, you can see Roger Ebert calls it "splendid", and Kevin Thomas from the Los Angeles Times calls it "deep, unpredictable, refreshingly realistic", so obviously some people liked it... just not us. We have to admit, though, that the acting was all pretty good, and some of the shots were set up nice. It's just that, well, none of that really matters when the film starts making you itch to get up and go do something else, anything else, just as long as you can stop watching the movie.

Steal Me Kevin was right on the money about the unpredictable part, as I was predicting story to take place, not just a movie about people kind of hanging around. Had this been a NetFlix release, I'm sure we would have stopped it at the halfway point, but alas, I agreed to do a review for it so I had to actually watch the whole thing. Sometimes movies do get better in the third act... but this wasn't one of them. If you're a huge drama fan or just like movies where nothing happens, then this has got your name all over it. For all us sci-fi geeks or Adam Sandler nuts, this is one where you're going to want to save your money.

Steal Me will be released theatrically in select theaters on September 9th, 2005. It stars Cara Seymour as Sarah, Danny Alexander as Jake, Hunter Parrish as Tucker, John Terry as John, Paz de la Huerta as Lily Rose, and Toby Poser as Grace, and was written and directed by Melissa Painter. Check out the official website for more.

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