LIKE the record-breaking multi-million pound loot itself, the infamous 2015 Hatton Garden heist is an idea evidently too good to pass up. This third film based on the daring crime is an old-school film about old-timers proving that they’ve still got it, one that brings together an impressive roster of veteran British actors.

Brian (Michael Caine) is a 70-something retired thief and recent widower approached by much younger tech expert, Basil (Charlie Cox), with an idea to rob an underground safe of a diamond shop in London’s high-end Hatton Garden area. He assembles a crew of old cohorts including the unpredictable Terry (Jim Broadbent), hot-headed Danny (Ray Winstone), mild-mannered Kenny (Tom Courtenay) and world-weary Carl (Paul Whitehouse).

For what was one of the most audacious heists in British history, coupled with the fact that it’s directed by the usually boisterous James Marsh (The Theory of Everything, Man on Wire), it’s surprising we get a film that’s more workmanlike than spectacular. But armed with an A-grade cast giving it their all, it transcends its shortcomings to give a breezily entertaining crime story. The script dispenses with any sort of great character development beyond the criminal personas in favour of getting on with the job. What it lacks in character depth it compensates with the heist itself which, despite lacking the slickness of the Ocean’s franchise, is a lot of fun.

Set to a jazzy score by Blade Runner 2049’s Benjamin Wallfisch, as well as the bantering and bickering of the aged robbers, it’s kind of fascinating to see the intricacies of how they pulled it off and how these actions will tee up inevitable repercussions.

The second half introduces an interest element to the mix as paranoia seeps its way into the crew as they divvy up the score. It showcases just how much value a premium cast has in elevating a familiar crime narrative, with Courtenay becoming increasingly manipulative and Broadbent surprisingly beating Winstone in the menace department.

The film isn’t interested in engaging with the morality

of the tale. But if you can get beyond that potentially troublesome ethos, there’s good fun to be had from a peerless cast clearly enjoying themselves.