‘American Heist” is a bad movie with a glorious title. Think of the notables with “American” as a topper: “American Sniper,” “American Beauty,” “American Hustle,” even “American Horror Story” had its merits. But “American Heist” takes a good, functional concept and turns it on its backside, not to mention throwing the performance capabilities of Oscar winner Adrien Brody into the mud. Either Armenian-born director Sarik Andreasyan has never seen a Quentin Tarantino film or heisting just isn’t his thing. Most likely, both.
This is Andreasyan’s first major Hollywood outing. The only other English-titled film listed on his IMDb director credits is called “Pregnant.” It’s about a man who gets pregnant. Not, perhaps, an auspicious background for a director making a crime thriller. (According to vicious online rumors, the director speaks no English either, which must have made communicating with cast and crew difficult and ponderous.)