“I think it was on Inside the Actor’s Studio that Edward Norton said the number one reason he could not turn down the movie, though he was initially inclined to, was that he wouldnt be able to live with the regret when he walked by a poster and saw Robert De Niro, Marlon Brando, and Some Other Guy. Can’t say I blame him.
The Score is a heist movie (is that officially its own genre yet?) and Norton plays the inside man on the job. This is about as sleezy and douche-y as we ever see him. He’s prolly sleezier in The Italian Job, but this wins on the d-bag front. But for me, his character is by far my favorite, and not just because it’s Edward Norton.
De Niro is the center of the movie. He’s the one with the internal conflict about whether or not to do the job, and he’s the one we’re supposta care about thru everything. Unfortunately, he just annoys me. What he tries to play as cautious and conflicted comes off as melancholy and ploddingly slow. Norton, on the other hand, yeah you wanna punch him half the time. But part of why he’s the inside guy is because while working at the customs house they plan to rob, he’s posing as a mentally ill janitor’s assistant. So acting wise he’s practically playing two characters. And I just love his handi-capable alter ego. Because it’s meant as a fake, he can push the limits of how far to take the act. I’m sure that was also part of the draw for him.
One thing I love about heists is I love how ridiculous they are. There’s so many of ’em out there, that writers are just reaching to come up with new scenarios and fun and interesting ways to accomplish the mission. While The Score may not have the light fun tone of say the Ocean’s movies, they do get some creativity points. And IMDB trivia tells me (spoiler alert if you click) that MythBusters actually attempted this scenario. Result was “”plausible””. Its not exactly the best hesit film. Hell, its not even the best one Norton’s in. But it’s still enjoyable, thanks to the cast.”