Daniel Alfredson's crime thriller is based on the true story of the kidnapping of Freddie Heineken (Anthony Hopkins) in Amsterdam during the year 1983. The would be criminals, led by Cor Van Hout (Jim Sturgess), are fed up with their poor financial predicament and decide the kidnap the rich tycoon and demand Holland's largest ransom. However, the stresses and pressures of the kidnapping create friction among the group.
The best crime films almost revel in the tiny, intrinsic aspects of plan, take Stanley Kubrick's crime caper The Killing which takes pleasure in detailing every nook and cranny of the heist in a way that almost makes the crime itself a masterpiece of machinery. Kidnapping Mr Heineken doesn't really do this as despite the fact that the gang argue the kidnapping needs proper preparation and an understanding of Freddie Heineken's schedule before it's executed we never really see this, the film just glosses other this aspect entirely.
There are further problems with the script, Willem Holleeder (Sam Worthington) has a poor relationship with his dad (never explained why) and there is a scene where the gang are relieved to find out that they did not leave the ransom note in the copier but finding a different piece of paper doesn't prove that nobody found the note they possibly left in the copier. These things aside the film does have its moments and much of these involve Hopkins. Once again Hopkins finds himself playing mind games in a padded cell, and these moments are when the film's at its most tense.
The performances are fine, but there is very little attempt at any sort of Dutch accent (Sam Worthington couldn't be more obviously Australian) but a scenery chewing performance from Hopkins is quite fun to watch. Overall, Kidnapping Mr Heinenken isn't really worth your time even though it isn't completely terrible.