Great Word: loot

Le cul entre les deux chaises

When they’re done well, heist movies are my absolute favorite. The basic premise of any heist movie is deciding to steal something, planning how to do it, practicing how it will go down, doing the job and then the aftermath. The best ones, in order of greatness are TOPKAPI (1964), Du rififi chez les hommes [RIFIFI] (1955) and the second THOMAS CROWNE AFFAIR (1999).

EN → loot — stolen money or valuables. ORIGIN early 19th cent. from Hindi lūṭ, from Sanskrit luṇṭh [rob].

I really wanted this to be a Word Mystery but loot is butin en français and butín en español. Disappointed, though clearly connected to “booty” [valuable stolen goods] which is from Middle Low German.

Other heists to look into

  • David Mamet’s HEIST
  • Guy Ritchie’s SNATCH
  • Stanley Kubrick’s THE KILLING


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