Peter Facinelli trades in his "Twilight Saga" fangs and doctor's degree for 10 skilled digits in "Loosies," the story of a New York City pickpocket named Bobby. After a former fling says she is carrying his baby, Bobby reexamines his criminal behavior and tries to make room in his life for a wife and child.
Bobby's dilemma, namely mixing a romantic relationship with a life of crime, brings to mind "Harry in Your Pocket," Bruce Geller's engaging 1973 adventure about a team of professional pickpockets. Nearly 40 years after its theatrical release, the story still holds up very well, even making some prescient statements about the future of credit cards.
James Coburn is as cold as ice as Harry, the stylish thief recruited by Casey (Walter Pidgeon) as part of a new pickpocket team. Casey also recruits Ray (Michael Sarrazin), a younger, less-skilled thief to work as a "stall," a team member who distracts potential victims so Harry can relieve them of their valuables. Ray does, however, have bigger aspirations.
Ray and Harry are like opposite sides of the same coin. Each is romantically attracted to another team member named Sandy (Trish Van Devere). Ray met Trish after his bumbling pickpocketing attempts caused her to lose all her money and the two inexplicably fell in love. Though not a thief, Trish actually has better instincts and street smarts than would-be pickpocket Ray.
As Casey helps Ray hone his skills, Harry makes a move on Trish, which causes serious friction in the team. Like Bobby's relationship troubles in "Loosies," Ray has to decide what's more important to him: a fancy lifestyle like Harry's or the love of a woman like Trish.
Picking the Brain of a Pickpocket
"Loosies" and "Harry in Your Pocket" are fictionalized accounts of three different pickpockets, but entertainer Bob Arno offers a fascinating look at the real thing. In the National Geographic documentary "Pickpocket King," Arno travels to Europe, using his owned skilled fingers as a way to introduce himself to local pickpockets.
As Arno points out in his blog, pickpockets in Naples demonstrate finesse and teamwork, much like the fictional Harry and his crew. With documentary cameras following him around the city, Arno uses his pickpocketing knowledge to become a "mark" or victim, but he quickly turns the tables on his would-be thieves by relieving them of a watch or wallet. It's one heck of an introduction and helps break the ice.
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- Arts & Entertainment
- Trish Van Devere