Inside Man

Rated 4.0

A well-planned bank robbery suddenly degenerates into a hostage situation—until the police negotiator (Denzel Washington) begins to suspect that the gang’s leader (Clive Owen) is playing an entirely different game. Meanwhile, the bank chairman (Christopher Plummer) hires a high-level fixer (Jodie Foster) for shadowy reasons of his own. Russell Gewirtz’s script is deliciously complicated, with one wicked twist after another right up to the end. Director Spike Lee does his best work in years, keeping the action crystal clear throughout. Gewirtz and Lee cleverly build suspense with flash-forwards to police interviews after the incident, and Lee gets sharp performances from his high-pedigree cast, which also includes Willem Dafoe as a SWAT captain and Chiwetel Ejiofor as Washington’s partner.