“The Angels’ Share” comes to us from Ken Loach, the socially conscious British director whose “The Wind That Shakes the Barley” won the Palme d’Or in 2006. But “The Angels’ Share,” written by regular collaborator Paul Laverty, is much more lighthearted than the I.R.A.-based “Barley,” being concerned with nothing more than the exploits of some Glasgow delinquents who want to steal some very old, very valuable whisky. It’s the “Ocean’s Eleven” of whisky-heist movies!
And what a charming, sweet-natured comedy it is! Robbie (Paul Brannigan), a young former hoodlum seeking to stay out of trouble so he can care for his girlfriend and newborn son, befriends some of the low-level criminals with whom he’s assigned to do community service. Their supervisor, a kindly, coach-like middle-aged man named Harry (John Henshaw), is a whisky aficionado, and he begins to share his expertise with Robbie and the crew, leading to a scheme to pilfer a few bottles’ worth from a recently discovered cask of rare booze about to be auctioned. (For the purposes of the film, stealing old whisky does not qualify as a “crime.”) Robbie and his pals — including dim-bulb Albert (Gary Maitland) and punk-girl Mo (Jasmine Riggins) — are a fun bunch of tart-tongued Scots, and if their adventures don’t amount to anything of thematic significance, watching them is a pleasure.
B+ (1 hr., 41 min.; )