It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
"Jack of Diamonds" is a harmless exercise in how not to make a suspense adventure. I can't think of any reason to go and see it, unless you're a George Hamilton fan. He's pleasant enough, I guess, but as unlike a diamond thief as J. Edgar Hoover is unlike Murph the Surf.
Hamilton, firmly cast in the Handsome Young Man image, is such a gentleman that he got Sandra Dee with child in "Doctor, You've Got to Be Kidding" merely by kissing her. His approach to diamond thievery is equally lacking in abandon. He sneaks into buildings and off oceanliners and into the Paris police headquarters with all the cunning of a senior at a prom.
In a suspense movie, of course, a quick pace counts for everything. If events happen quickly enough and are visually exciting, we aren't bothered by holes in the plot. It's only when the pace slows down and people stand around talking about the plot that it concerns us.
Hitchcock, who not only understands this truth but probably discovered it, explains to François Truffaut in their new book that the important thing is to introduce a goal or target, convince the audience that it's a life or death matter that the characters reach it and then forget it and get on with the characters. If the guy's a diamond thief, fine; but don't stand around appraising diamonds, see?