Cinema: Lining Up the Buck

The scene is the Los Angeles Coliseum, packed with roaring, screaming fans watching a National Football League championship play-off game. The star is Jim Brown, once the most celebrated fullback in professional football. But is Brown bucking the line? Nope. This time he's lining up the buck. Aided by a gang of professional goons—Ernest Borgnine, Jack Klugman, Warren Gates, Donald Sutherland—Brown is robbing the Coliseum.

This dreadful film is in the same genre as Topkapi and Rififi, but the resemblance stops there. The first half is a how-to-do-it set piece on the art of robbing a football stadium and getting away with...

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