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The bank - David Wenham, Anthony Lapaglia, Sibylla Budd, Robert Connolly

Threat advisory: High - High risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

Public enemy number one: the bank.

Jim Doyle (David Wenham) is a maths genius working in the far reaches of fractal theory, searching for a formula that can predict future stock market crashes. The potential in Jim's software fires the imagination and greed of Simon O'Reilly (Anthony Lapaglia), the CEO of Centabank. O'Reilly's freewheeling management style and negative performance are under attack by the board of Centabank. he's looking for the magic bullet to save his skin. Offering Jim access to mainframe computers, O'Reilly lures Jim to work for Centabank.

With endless money and resources to play with, Jim perfects his theory. O'Reilly and the bank's board of directors fall under the spell of his system and the wealth it could bring. In this slick corporate world, Jim is drawn to Michelle, a rising Centabank executive. Of all the bank's problems, none is greater than Centabank's exposure to massive foreign currency loans.

A couple of battlers, Wayne and Diane, have their houseboat operation, funded by an offshore loan, foreclosed by Centabank. With help from a young legal aid lawyer, they take action. Fearing victory will trigger a class action that could ruin Centabank, O'Reilly sanctions a dirty tricks campaign.

In this reckless environment, O'Reilly throws all caution aside and bets the bank and his own future on Jim's genius. In Centabank's bowels, Jim uses state-of-the-art hardware to fine tune his program. His work will predict the exact point of the coming market crash. Jim assures Simon it's foolproof and promises total market domination by Centabank in a single day.

But as the stakes mount, mistrust multiplies. While Michelle digs into the archives to find more about Jim's past, Wayne plots his personal vendetta against Centabank and Simon O'Reilly. Who is Jim Doyle and why is he suddenly running the biggest banking scam in decades? The triple witching hour on 25 October will trigger the biggest stock market crash ever. At the critical moment, Jim launches his ballistic disc and takes Centabank's future in his hands.

Persons of interest

  • David Wenham .... Jim Doyle
  • Anthony LaPaglia .... Simon O'Reilly
  • Sibylla Budd .... Michelle Roberts
  • Steve Rodgers .... Wayne Davis
  • Mitchell Butel .... Stephen
  • Mandy McElhinney .... Diane Davis
  • Greg Stone .... Vincent
  • Kazuhiro Muroyama .... Toshio
  • Andrew Bayly .... Mr Johnson
  • Thomas Blackburne .... Young Jim
  • Sharon Oppy .... Teacher
  • Robert Van Mackelenberg .... Chairman
  • Jeff Keogh .... Christopher
  • Joshua Jay .... Roger
  • Holly Myers .... Yvonne
  • Robert Connolly .... Screenwriter
  • Robert Connolly .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

  • Awards and film festivals:
    • Australian Guild of Screen Composers 2001: Best music for a feature film (Alan John)
    • Film Critics Circle of Australia 2002: Best editing (Nick Meyers)
    • if Film Awards 2001: Best editing
  • See also The boys
  • Studios and distributors

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

A good little Aussie thriller, with Little Aussie Battlers™ lining up against men in suits (aka bastards). The twist curls nicely into a thumping great wallop across the chops for the bankers (rhymes with wankers). It also portrays the Australian financial industry as a pack of money hungry pricks with a lump of lead where humans have hearts. No, it's not a documentary, just a realistic setting for an unfortunately fictional story.

It's interesting to watch David and Anthony play off against each other as they're both underplayers (great at keeping their cards close to their chests). Kind of like trying to tell the difference between ash grey and charcoal grey. Fortunately there are some interesting side characters to cast shadows on the leads, allowing you to see that they aren't as featureless as you first thought.

If you have issues with a financial institution that makes multi-billion dollar profits from charging fees to your account, you'll enjoy The bank. If you are a financial institution that makes multi-billion dollar profits from charging fees to your customers' accounts, you won't.

A joke...

Question: Why do the Irish call their currency the Punt?
Answer: Because it rhymes with bank manager.

[Special Agent Matti once worked in a bank so he knows what sort of bastard works there, after all, they'd have to be bastards if they let him in - Director of Intelligence.]

Media intelligence (DVD box set)

  • Special features:
    • Extras disc including A political arena, a documentary by Robert Connolly on the political and social themes of The boys, The bank and Three dollars
    • Filmmaker kit (CD-ROM): Photos, screenplays, etc, from the Arena film catalogue

Security censorship classification

M (Medium level coarse language, adult themes)

Surveillance time

106 minutes (1:46 hours)
306 minutes (4:26 hours) - Box set

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 6 September 2001
DVD retail: 1 February 2006 - Box set

Cinema surveillance images

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