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12 heist movies to stream while social distancing

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Sitting at home with my laptop and a cup of hot cocoa, I feel the call of the heist.

As streamers the world over continue social distancing, things are getting, well, a little boring. Sure, I’m indulging in plenty of teen dramas, stand-up specials, and comedies. But something inside of me (and I imagine others) longs for the tension of a stealth maneuver, the thrill of the open road, and the excitement of that final stand-off where you just don’t know who will win. 

Enter the magical world of heist cinema. Strap in, suit up, and try to remember which briefcase was which — because, ranked from least to most narratively complex, here are 12 crime movies to help you feel like you’re up to [gestures wildly] something while social distancing. 

Edgar Wright’s action thriller combines the best of a slappin’ soundtrack with the most exciting parts of a classic car chase. Ansel Elgort stars as Baby, a talented getaway driver with a fondness for iPods and shades. Supporting performances by Lily James, Jon Hamm, Eiza González, and Jamie Foxx make this a stylistic joy-ride worth every twist and turn. Bell bottoms, bell bottoms …

How to watch: Baby Driver is now streaming on Hulu.

Nothing says adventure like an exhilarating western. In Hell or High Water, Chris Pine and Ben Foster star as bank-robbing brothers opposite Texas rangers played by Jeff Bridges and Gil Birmingham. Melancholy, beautiful, and undeniably gripping, this is the movie to watch if you want to be completely consumed for an evening (or two).

How to watch: Hell or High Water is now streaming on Netflix.

Widows is everything you could want in a movie, in the heist genre or otherwise. It’s got a spectacular lead in Viola Davis with riveting dynamics between her and co-stars Elizabeth Debicki, Cynthia Erivo, and Michelle Rodriguez. Daniel Kaluuya makes for the perfect villain. Plus, we get appearances by Brian Tyree Henry, Jacki Weaver, Liam Neeson, and Olivia the Dog. Oh, and the soundtrack is great, the action is great, and we get a couple twists. You’re welcome.

How to watch: Widows is now streaming on Cinemax.

Easily the most straight-forwardly funny movie on this list, A Fish Called Wanda is hysterical. Yes, there’s an intriguing jewel heist at its center. But there’s also John Cleese and Jamie Lee Curtis having more onscreen chemistry than they know what to do with, a boatload of iconic one-liners, and the best interrogation scene ever written. Perfect for a relaxing night of thieving. 

How to watch: A Fish Called Wanda is now streaming on HBO Now

Based on the real life events of fraudster Frank Abagnale, Catch Me If You Can isn’t your traditional heist movie. This Leo DiCaprio classic follows a skilled young forger on a multi-year crime spree that takes him all over the planet donning new identities at every stop. Tom Hanks appears opposite DiCaprio as FBI agent Carl Hanratty. Fun, fancy-free, and tense as all get out.

How to watch: Catch Me If You Can is available for rent or purchase on Amazon Prime Video, Google Play, YouTube, and iTunes.

Directed by David O. Russell, this killer ensemble piece offers a little something for everyone. Starring Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Jeremy Renner, Amy Adams, and Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle takes a tongue-in-cheek look at the moral intersection between con man and investigator. Come for the glitzy costumes and awesome songs. Stay for the “science oven.”

How to watch: American Hustle is available for rent or purchase on Amazon Prime Video, Google Play, YouTube, and iTunes.

Yeah, Ocean’s 8 wasn’t quite the movie its stellar cast and spectacular styling promised. But upon a second viewing, this writer has to admit it’s pretty freaking fun. (Don’t worry. Our ace film critic knew that the first time around.) Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Sarah Paulson, Awkwafina, Mindy Kaling, Helena Bonham Carter, and Rihanna have the time of their already-glorious lives playing con-artists robbing the Met Gala. 

How to watch: Ocean’s 8 is now streaming on Cinemax.

Inspired by the 1971 Baker Street robbery, The Bank Job tells an outrageous story of blackmail, burglary, and British intelligence. The perpetually awesome Jason Statham stars opposite Saffron Burrows as two reluctant thieves responsible for retrieving a safety deposit box on behalf of MI5. At a little under two hours, this is a great dose of ’70s style and, uh, … we’ll call it “approximate” history.

How to watch: The Bank Job is now streaming on Showtime.

It’s a classic for a reason. The Usual Suspects takes a fairly straightforward crime plot and then contorts it beyond recognition with twists, double-crosses, big reveals, unreliable recollections, and an epic finale. When all five of your main characters are untrustworthy (and aiming to steal $91 million worth of cocaine), you’re bound to have one hell of a ride. 

How to watch: The Usual Suspects is now streaming on Hulu.

From Ocean’s director Steven Soderbergh, Logan Lucky is a quirky heist film that follows a group of thieves intent on robbing a NASCAR event. Channing Tatum and Adam Driver star as brothers-turned-masterminds who seek out the help of an experienced safecracker, played by a blonde Daniel Craig, and their tough-as-nails sister, played by Riley Keough. Katie Holmes, Sebastian Stan, and a disturbing number of cockroaches also appear. 

How to watch: Logan Lucky is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

A Quentin Tarantino staple, Reservoir Dogs is a bloody knockout. Whether you’ve seen it a dozen times or never before, this breakneck journey through the aftermath of a diamond heist gone wrong drags you through extreme violence, phenomenal humor, and more suspense than many can stand. If Tarantino is your thing, Reservoir Dogs never misses. So, you gonna bark all day little doggie?

How to watch: Reservoir Dogs is now streaming on STARZ.

Christopher Nolan’s Inception is the heist movie of our dreams. (Well, technically they’re big-business heir Robert Fischer’s dreams, but you get the idea.) Leo DiCaprio and Joseph Gordon-Levitt star as corporate espionage specialists responsible for extracting and, if they can pull it off, implanting ideas in the minds of their targets. WHAAAAAOOOOOOMP. 

How to watch: Inception is now streaming on Netflix.

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