Mad Money

1 h 43 min2008PG-13
Deep inside the most secure bank in America, three desperate women from very different worlds cook up the most unlikely heist of the century: Smuggle out millions of dollars in worn-out currency headed for a Federal Reserve shredder every day.
Callie Khouri
Diane KeatonKatie HolmesQueen Latifah
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
Ted Danson
James AchesonJay CohenFrank DeMartini
PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
Content advisory
Substance usealcohol usefoul languagesexual contentviolence
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4.7 out of 5 stars

1226 global ratings

  1. 84% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 9% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 3% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 1% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 3% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

CalGirl1983Reviewed in the United States on June 14, 2022
4.0 out of 5 stars
Lighten up folks, - this is just escapist entertainment
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I don't get the reviewers who feel the need to pick apart and analyze every nuance of this film - it's meant just as a brief vacation from reality and as a means to be entertained during the current isolation/lonely times epidemic. Of course everyone has had the fantasy of ripping off a miserable government that would shred over $1,000,000 a day of old but still usable cash when most citizens of said country can't even afford a decent education or health care. But actually doing it? And with recruiting unreliable unknown strangers as your accomplices? Then walking away with fines and penalties from the IRS as your only punishment simply because the head security guy was too embarassed to admit he had been negligent in his duties of surveillance of employees' activities? How likely a scenario is that? In theory, possible, I guess, with a million (pardon the pun) to one odds, but not beliveable enough to take seriously. The film, as executed, was well-done - all solid comedic performances by the actors; making all the lead characters female and relegating the male actors to supporting roles instead of their usual "male lead" status; the directorial tactic of starting the movie out with bits and pieces of the outcome presented as teasers to hook you into wanting to keep watching to see how they tie into and carry the story; making the characters all likeble people, with good chemistry, (albeit for the most part rather over-sterotyped); and making the premise the ever-popular "little guys outsmart the real criminals who are running the government". Really entertaining, but too fantastical to be taken seriously. Diane Keaton never (from her films that I have watched, which is most of them) disapponts, and Katie Holmes is great as the ditzy but loveable sidekick. Queen Latifah is good in her role also, but overdoes the "ghetto single mom" stereotype a little too heavily. One small part of the plot really irritated me, concerning the script writing for her character - why was it ok for her to (after insisting "nobody can spend any of the money as it would call too much attention to us") enroll her kids in an expensive private school and pay for the whole year in advance, along with offering to make "a significant donation" to the school's library, - then, after Diane Keaton's character weakens and buys an expensive ring she can't resist, walk into the bathroom where she is working, confront HER with "YOU'RE spening the money, aren't you?, rip off her glove and then the ring, and flush it down the can? I couldn't figure out why nobody called her out for paying for the expensive tuition at the school. Wouldn't that qualify as "calling attention to themselves"? And conspicuous consumption facilitated by under-the-radar means of acquisition, the one thing they were trying to avoid? And also, it was a little incongruous that she would decide to set an example for her kids by committing such a crime after lecturing them on her hard line against them ever even stealing a candy bar. Oh, well, a little faux pas or two in an otherwise cute and clever film. All in all, a fun movie to watch, stacks of untraceable cash to fantasize about, seeing people forge lasting friendships resulting from sharing a crazy experience, and forgetting that the real, more likely result of the ballsy pursuits of these women, "Club Fed", is not something most people would want to take a chance on experiencing. Just enjoy it for what it's meant to be - a way to entertain you, which it accomplishes very well.
Stacy Hackney (formerly customerS)Reviewed in the United States on October 14, 2013
3.0 out of 5 stars
liked it...(SPOILERS)
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the actresses/actors were very good. loved seeing a woman mastermind a caper. my favorite scene was when the Diane Keaton character bought this beautiful ring with her ill-gotten gold after she'd promised to not buy any big ticket items (which, after she purchased it, makes her a liar as well as a thief). the impish glint in her eye as she gives in to temptation to try on the bauble shows why she is a master actress in her class: priceless. The Queen was solid, and Katie Holmes shows her comedic chops. Ted was good and the gentlemen playing Katie Holmes husband/boyfriend and Queen Latifah's boyfriend were too. I liked the story structure, and soundtrack music was very good.

my only dislikes were:

(1) the caricatured government bureaucrat - tired story convention having a stupid government employee, just lazy writing;

(2) that a sane person like the Diane Keaton character would apparently have no problem stealing. the writer should've done a better job showing her do at least one sneaky thing before she decided to steal from the government which would've established her criminal tendencies or that she felt the rules did not apply to her (this would've strengthened the story though admittedly her character would've come off as a jerk, and probably made it harder for producers to get a star). As written, having her decide to rob the government because she and her husband were enduring economic difficulty wasn't strong enough story-wise - she needed to be a rule breaker somewhere in her life before jumping in the deep end and stealing from the U.S. government. I mean couldn't they have shown her stealing a candy bar first or something?

the writer established the economic dire straits she and her husband were in, and I understand usually law-abiding citizens will break the law under extreme duress, but stealing from the treasury without a hint of worry about getting caught just made her seem too out there, because in all other ways the writer established her as a normal upper middle class housewife: didn't mesh. I understand it was necessary for her to appear innocuous and to have no record to get the job, but as the story eventually revealed her to be this brilliant criminal mastermind capable of outmaneuvering the U.S. government without even breaking a sweat, the audience needed to be shown something, anything, before she did that to accept that she'd be capable of it. I mean where did that come from? Does a person wake up one morning a completely fearless and cocky criminal genius after decades working as a housewife? How in the world does she (believably) make that transition. This movie provides no bridge except financial necessity, which is too weak.

Story gives us a middle age woman whose husband couldn't find a job and who was in hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt. Said woman initially couldn't find a job and when she found one, she complained about the work, and then stole from her employer, with no guilt whatsoever, though her employer provided the health benefits she said she and her husband needed. Talk about ungrateful. Only an accomplished comedian like Diane Keaton (and good writing of some minor characters, i.e., lady who interviews Diane for a job, and lady who trains her at the treasury) could make that work; and

(3) unbelievable that these ordinary women with no previous history of theft would be able to successfully out-play the government with just a tax attorney hired on the fly. In real life I think the women would've had not only the treasury department after them, and the IRS as presented, but the FBI, and who knows who all else. Very likely the anti-terrorist part of the government would've investigated them just to make sure there were no terrorist ties. The women would've been in legal trouble for years and their families destroyed, not brought together through adversity, as portrayed in the film.

and to have the Diane Keaton character smirk at the authorities as her lone attorney (in real life they'd have had a team of defense attorneys) outplayed (abit smugly) the government was totally unbelievable; she'd have been terrified of going to prison for many years. And with regards to that smirk, the officers would've pursued her for that alone, given she'd been robbing the government for years and was clearly unrepentant.

and the kindly detective interrogating the other members of the crew at the police station, who reassuringly told the Queen Latifah character that she'd basically been let off the hook when the Katie Holmes character obligingly decided to accept responsibility for the crimes - do officers do that? I mean be so concerned about a criminal's psychological well-being that they'd seek to spare a bank robber the unnecessary worry about the possibility of losing custody of their children? Uh, no. An officer's job in that situation would be to lean, lean, lean on the criminal, to apply as much pressure as possible to make them confess to the crime, not to hold their hand or attempt to comfort them (unless they were playing good cop/bad cop as has been presented in other films, and I only saw one questioner in the sequence so the writers weren't trying for that).

I believe there are many honorable officers in this country, but on a weekly basis you can read about some, who, shall we say focus on the punitive side of their job. The detective as written was just too kind to be believable. Also, would a regular police detective be interrogating the perps? Wouldn't the FBI do that? I believe the robbers were stealing from the federal government, so the feds would be overseeing this case. The policing officers were far too weak in this story to be believable, as if they didn't have a zillion laws (and prosecutors) backing them up.

it's these chinks in storytelling, the mistakes writers make in (I guess) trying to have an actor appear heroic (in this case the Katie Holmes' character), that is so unbelievable it pushes me right out of the story. I like Katie Holmes' acting in this story, she plays an airhead and I don't mind that she wanted to be a hero, but I dislike the way the writer did it here because it's so unbelievable given what an officer's job would be in that situation in real life.

a story only works if the character's behavior and the audience behavioral rules operate in the same reality. The film is based on a true story which took place in England, but even there one person went to prison.

I still like the film, mostly because of the outstanding acting of the six leads and it's good to see women actors headlining a film, and also because as a poor person it's fun to see ordinary characters with tons of money being able to buy whatever they want, especially in these hard economic times. The negative was having the villains win, but it was presented so unbelievably that there was no way to take the story seriously. Three and a half stars.

P.S. Wish we'd get more women power stories. Don't mind women villains, very much like them in fact, but prefer a more believable story. Oh well. The ladies did a nice job. Recommended as light-hearted entertainment though you'll have to leave your brain at the door.
2 people found this helpful
LMin MichiganReviewed in the United States on July 6, 2022
5.0 out of 5 stars
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Love the actors and the story.
Khristine JacksonReviewed in the United States on September 22, 2020
4.0 out of 5 stars
We ..can dream can't we..?
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This movie ...awe .. What a delicious comedy ..the three leading ladies are Smart,witty and gutsy. I believe that this is an updated version of the 1980 movie. "How To Beat the High cost of Living" that starred "Susan St James, Jane Curtain and Jessica Lange"..? First of all who doesn't dream of committing some knid of "Work related heist"..? First of all ..I wouldn't recommend it.. because that money is property of the Federal government and lastly rotting away in club fed ..isn't worth it..! The story line is fabulous and the coupling of the actor's like a glove. In the beginning the theft's are's only when they get .... more impulsive to ..STEAL ..more that they become suspect.. ? Has someone ever been able to pull off a theft this size before..? Yes ..back in the 1990's some Brink's Employees stole million's in cash ..they too got caught..! Ms. Keaton does a great job playing a high living house wife ..who's husband's debt's send's her to working at the Treasury department..because her maid can't secure work due to her criminal record.. The fact that she could convince "Queen Latifah's" character ,then Katie Holmes character into joining along in the risky endeavor is absolutely hilarious.. This is a must see ...for the family and friends... By the way ..I had the pleasure of meeting Diane Keaton and Queen Latifah many years ago in Los Angeles,Ca.. Both lovely ladies and extreme talents in the industry of film making..
2 people found this helpful
AdamReviewed in the United States on May 11, 2021
4.0 out of 5 stars
This movie is mad, madly entertaining!
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This is a light hearted Comedy about three women who work with the US Treasury destroying over used Bills. It stars Diane Keaton, Katie Holmes, and Queen Latifah and Ted Danson. This movie is perfect for the hard financial times we all seem to be going through lately. **SPOILER** Ted Danson’s character loses his job due to down sizing and Diane Keaton has to go back to work after many years out of the work force. The only job she can get is a janitor at the Federal Reserve Bank. There she meets Katie Holmes and Queen Latifah’s characters. Diane Keaton comes up with a plan to steal the money being destroyed. And then the fun begins. Grab a bowl of popcorn, a favorite drink and have a couple of hours of escape. I highly recommend this Movie.
Amazon CustomerReviewed in the United States on February 11, 2022
4.0 out of 5 stars
Entertaining movie
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well acted, decent writing
WillReviewed in the United States on June 17, 2022
3.0 out of 5 stars
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OK but not great
Glama PussReviewed in the United States on November 25, 2021
4.0 out of 5 stars
Very funny & enjoyable esply...
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the ending. Katie Hlomes looked beautiful with her wavy hair, and her dancing was a riot. Good preformances all round. Recommend.
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