It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
The Robber" might as well be called "The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Runner." It tells the story of a man who runs so well he's a marathon contender but is compelled to rob banks and then run away from the scene of the crime. That is what the movie is about: bank robberies and running, and a bleak life that seems to contain nothing else of much interest for him.
It is a good question whether Johann Rettenberger (Andreas Lust) actually feels joy when he pulls off a successful robbery and escapes. He seems to have sentenced himself to loop indefinitely though the same actions, punctuated by intervals of prison time. When we first see him, he's running around a prison track and then, back in his cell, pounding on a treadmill.
One assumes that champion endurance athletes must be monomaniacs, at least while training and performing. Lance Armstrong comes to mind. In the case of Rettenberger, there seems to be nothing else in life. He doesn't engage with people. His answers are curt and defiant. When he encounters a woman he was apparently involved with, he is cold and hostile. He makes no effort to ingratiate himself with his parole officer (Markus Schleinzer).
He trains. He plans. He runs. Is he exhilarated when he escapes after a bank job? Not apparently. His successful escape simply signals the beginning of the next job. He doesn't even show any interest in spending the loot.