If you like heist movies or films that focus on stealing priceless art, then you should check out Lift. Following a group led by Cyrus (Kevin Hart), watch as they steal an NFT but are later caught by Interpol. To stay out of prison, the team must focus on their biggest heist ever- stealing a pallet of gold bars off a plane. Can they pull off this incredible heist? Watch the movie now on Netflix, then come back and read our Lift review 2024.
As always, spoilers ahead!
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Lift Review 2024 – Breaking Down Plot, Setting, Characters
The “Impossible” Heist
The main plot line of this movie is to retrieve a palette of gold in an airplane while in flight. But the movie doesn’t start when the plane lifts off. It starts with Cyrus and his crew at an auction in Italy and London where an expensive NFT created by N8 is being sold to the highest bidder. When Cyrus wins the auction, it immediately sets off Interpol agent Abby and her team who scramble to get to Cyrus.
After all is said and done, Cyrus is cornered by Abby in his apartment and given an ultimatum — help Interpol with a high-stakes mission, or go to prison for stealing one of Van Gogh’s paintings during the auction. Cyrus and his team accept and learn that they must steal a palette of gold bars from a plane en route to Jorgensen’s compound — a notorious criminal mastermind planning to hurt thousands through a hacker group known as Leviathan.
We get to see the team in action, putting together their respective parts to turn a private jet into an invisible target ready to help get the gold. Things go awry when Jorgensen’s men catch on and put the gold on the private jet after the plane lands on a Scandinavian airstrip, bringing it right to Jorgensen. The plane crash lands on Jorgensen’s compound after nearly being shot down by NATO planes, and with some clever maneuvering from some of N8’s cameras, Cyrus, Abby, and Camila can get Jorgensen arrested and fully pardoned.
Abby meets with her superior Huxley and learns that he sent the NATO planes to shoot down the aircraft knowing she and other civilians were on the plane, and decides to quit and follow Cyrus instead. This is when the clever part happens because we learn that Huxley never got the gold — Cyrus’ team did. With some switching in the plane and guidance to land by Luke, the movie ends with Abby helping get the gold out of a lake and Huxley realizing his mistake.
I do wish the movie was a little longer since some parts (building the stealth airplane and Leviathan’s demonstration) were rushed, but for the most part, I was entertained the whole time, and I didn’t see them stealing the gold coming. The best part for me though was stealing gold while in the air, because not many heist movies have this type of element in them.
Mastery of the Ground and Air
40,000 feet in the air? For a heist? No problem for Cyrus’ team, and it does make for a very interesting setting in the film. Not many other heist movies have a plane that needs to be infiltrated. Most of the time, you see them trying to get into a bank or other barricaded building, or even underground. The air is a tricky setting because there are only a few ways to be in the air and still be alive. Planes are one of them, and it makes a great challenge to Cyrus’ team because they need to figure out the “impossible.”
I also like the range of settings around the world to show that this heist covers multiple countries. We start the movie off in Italy, then we jump around to Brussels and Jorgensen’s estate, and of course the airport and airplanes. It gives weight to the heist and shows how these so-called criminals must come together to stop some very bad people. I don’t think I would have changed anything with the setting.
A Special Set of Skills
Cyrus has put together a team of five other people who each have their unique skills to master a heist. These include Magnus (the safecracker), Camila (the pilot), Denton (the master of disguise), Mi-Sun (the hacker), and Luke (the mechanic). I love that each of these characters has a distinct personality they bring to the table to make a heist successful.
I do wish there was a little more development on the background part of their stories, more than just a mention of it by Abby when she’s talking to Cyrus, but this could be explored in future films. My favorite character would probably be Magnus other than Cyrus due to Magnus’ high-energy personality, but I do like all of the other characters as well. They balance each other and make both the team and the film successful.
Will There Be a Lift 2?
Officially, there has not been a green light for a Lift 2 — but there certainly is potential. From where the movie ended, we have loose ends with Abby’s future not being an officer, how each member of the team will react to their gold, and how Agent Huxley will retaliate after being conned out of the gold.
There is some hope from the filmmaker F. Gary Gray though, who thinks Netflix “may have an opportunity for a franchise” and if they do get the green light, then both Kevin and the cast could create something really interesting for the future.
Other Movies Like Lift
If you enjoyed the action-packed scenes of Lift and the idea of stealing priceless art pieces, then watch some of these films. With Uncharted and Red Notice, each team is searching for lost artifacts and art pieces, trying to find them for their own goals while working against opposing forces. In Bullet Train, there is a priceless suitcase riding on a bullet train, but it also happens to be riding with several skilled assassins who all need the suitcase for various reasons.
No matter which film you choose, they are all action-packed and full of betrayal, adventure, and some great fight scenes.
- Uncharted (2022)
- Red Notice (2021)
- Bullet Train (2022)
- The Art of the Steal (2013)
- Logan Lucky (2017)
Overall, Lift is a breath of fresh air to the heist genre, and the new settings of both around the world heists and in the air elevate this film for me. Though I wish there was some more depth into the character’s backstories and the slowing of certain scenes, each scene was action-packed and filled with the anticipation of getting the gold. I also really enjoyed the comedic relief in the film, to give a little brevity to a tough situation.
I hope that Netflix and the producers decide to make more films with this crew because some new franchises would be welcome in the film industry where some franchises just need to be put to rest.
- Diverse set of characters
- Range of settings
- Potential for a franchise
- Pacing issues
- Lack of depth in character backstories