Just Doing My Job: 6 Notable Masked Heists

Keanu Reeves with a masked Patrick Swayze in Point Break
If you’re Reagan, does that make me the chimp?
There’s a big difference between a masked “persona” and a uniform for work, and this incomplete list highlights criminals who costume up for the job.




Eyes are barely visible, but these still look empty-headed somehow.

1. Point Break (1991):  They’re robbers, they’re surfers! They’re former Commanders in Chief and—shhhh—- one of them’s also undercover FBI.


The Town Movie Poster
Southie’s nuns are hardcore.

2. Excellent use of nun costumes and rubber masks, though I’d think absconding in them might be troublesome.  What if your wimple gets caught in a door?







Kansas City Confidential (1952)
The creepy felt masks of Kansas City Confidential (1952)
3.  Thanks to Jake’s advice on film noir heist flicks, I saw Kansas City Confidential.  There was a lot of open-hand slapping and these flat felt masks with cutarounds for the ears, eyes, and a nose slit were seriously disturbing.  Hannibal vibe, right?




Sugar and Spice
On the getaway van’s bumper: Cheerleaders do it in formation
4. I actually saw this one, but mercifully forgot about it.  It was Moviefone’s disguised heist list that reminded me about Sugar and Spice, 2001’s Point Break-inspired crew of thieving cheerleaders.  Thanks a lot.



Gallatin P.D./ AP
Leprechaun surveillance by Gallatin P.D./ AP
5. In real-life, even a cheery costume may not save you.  According to the Commercial Appeal, this Tennessee leprechaun was later killed in a shoot-out with police, who also discovered a (Bad) Santa costume from a Christmastime robbery in his closet.




Caroll P.D./ AP
Faces become Rorshach tests. I see a loser and…another loser/ Caroll P.D. and AP
6.  Maybe if their masks weren’t drawn on with Sharpies, this pair of would-be bandits wouldn’t have been so easily caught, reports NY Daily News.  Of course, lots of crap ideas seem smarter when you’re high on marker fumes.



Clare Toohey is a fierce individualist belonging to loads of organizations and the group blog Women of Mystery. She recently had a surreal short story published in Murder New York Style: Fresh Slices, and finds masks less itchy from the outside.