Sean Connery steals scenes as well as merchandise in an immensely charismatic turn in Family Business, a darkly comic tale about three generations brought together and torn apart by their common attraction to thievery.
Director Sidney Lumet has crafted a film with real pathos while writer Vincent Patrick (adapting his own novel) injects enough bawdy humor to create a delightful mixed bag spiced with almost a European sensibility.
The key, however, is Connery, who dives head-first into his part as amoral family patriarch Jessie.
He’s an unabashed rogue well into his 60s who, when we meet him, must be bailed out of jail after savaging an off-duty cop in a bar fight. Connery cuts an irresistible figure to his sheltered Ivy League grandson (Matthew Broderick), who enlists the old man’s aid to carry out a high-tech robbery.
Caught in the middle, literally and figuratively, is the boy’s father (Dustin Hoffman), who once had the same relationship with his father and ended up doing hard time for it.