Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!
Seduction. Betrayal. Murder. Who's conning who?
A young short-con grifter suffers both injury and the displeasure of reuniting with his criminal mother, all the while dating an unpredictable young lady.
Part of Noir-November
“You wouldn’t do that.” “You don’t know what I’d do—you have no idea—to live.”
The word “grift” originated in the early twentieth century as an amalgam of “graft” and “drift,” a way to describe those itinerant conmen who followed the era's traveling circuses and sideshows swindling folks out of a buck or two. It’s a perfect word, really—descriptive and textured, with hints of both hard work and dishonesty, a combination of attraction and repulsion that any con artist brings with him. A common thief steals out of desperation or greed or ill will, but a grifter...well, a grifter doesn’t want to take your money so much as convince you to give it to her. She aims to…
The Grifters is a neo-noir film directed by Stephen Frears and produced by Martin Scorsese that tells the story of Roy Dillon, a con man who's stuggling to balance his relationship with his girlfriend and with his mother, who hate each other. It's a very fresh take on the 'con artist' genre (if that exists) because Stephen Frears' film never gets dull and the director provides us a well told story, compelling dialogue and likeable characters.
Stephen Frears' film has almost everything I like about this type of movies. First of all, The Grifters is a dialogue-heavy crime film, which is something that will always get my attention as long as it's well written, which happens in this film. Adapting…
Stephen Frears' "The Grifters" is a competent con-person drama that blends touches of light, dark, crime, and family politics. It is an engaging piece of work that is at its best when Frears focuses on his characters' criminal streaks but becomes slightly sodden when their interactions with one another take center stage.
At times, "The Grifters" is a jazzy crime drama where criminal machinations and the long and short grifts of its characters are capably entertaining. When the film's narrative sensibilities turn to the drama linking its three main characters, the whole affair seems to tire. Its twisty plot, however, still offers enough to compel.
The production has a limited scope, but Frears puts together something that feels more expansive.…
What starts off as another simple con movie about grifters quickly delves into a fascinating character study.
The film is filled with spine tingling twists throughout and never ceases to keep the viewer wondering who's going to get conned.
All three lead actors: John Cusack, Annette Bening,and Anjelica Huston(especially Huston) give some of the best performances of their careers. Each scene becomes a model for great acting as well as brilliant storytelling.
Stephen Frears really went all out with this film and raises the "con story" to the heights of greek tragedy. The finale is so stunning and it leaves the viewer only hanging on for more.
Subtle theme of the film could be boiled down to "crime doesn't pay"; but the complexities of this theme crash down on all three main characters as well as the viewer.
Director: Stephen Frears (Final Film)
The Grifters is a pulpy Oedipal story influenced strongly by Greek tragedy and my earliest comparison to another film comes in the form of Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 horror Psycho.
This film isn't a horror, and perhaps due to my real lack of knowledge regarding neo-noir I'm stuck for anything real to connect it to, but what I loved about the film, and the characters especially is that they're essentially conning everyone else, but also they're conning themselves. Conning themselves into believing what they want to believe and overall, the film, despite me not really having talked much about it, is a spectacularly performed and put together tour of excellence.
It's a twisty sleight of the hand that proves to be a slightly complex con act performed by an accomplished and confident Stephen Frears. I'm not one to often recommend a film, but this is certainly at least well worth watching.
"Well, who's a boy gonna talk to if not his mother?"
Who would have thought Lester Burnham's wife could play a conniving Bimbo to perfection?
John Cusack excels in a restrained performance.
Anjelica Huston as expected nails down the part of the experienced grifter who has seen it all.
A juicy neo noir with killer lines with twists and turns around the corner!
Fun enough, especially the performances by Benning and Huston with Cusack providing the calm and cool center
Great performances from all the actors, but I didn't enjoy the film as much as I expected to.
Well... that was bleak.
On paper, "The Grifters" is a film I should have loved but instead was shocked at how bored and uninterested I was. It was a shame because I love literally everybody that was involved in the film, especially the film's versatile director, Stephen Frears. My favorite genre is Neo-noir/Noir, with that said, usually those types of films have a darker, mysterious, pulpy tone with a stylish approach. What we got instead was a much slower paced drama film that studied mainly the character of con man John Cusack. That's totally fine having a film do that but if that is what the film is going to be, they need to execute it correctly. One modern noir film that did that perfectly was Gotz Spielmann's masterpiece, Revanche. Frears really needed to dig deeper within the characters. The film had it's moments to shine but instead teased the audience with a film that had potential.
Despite being pulpy and noirish, the affected acting style was an obstacle I couldn't overcome- every scene has the characters quibble and squawk using overdramatic mannerisms that are reminiscent of high school drama class.
Come to think of it, would have worked much better as a Max Fischer Players presentation.
Entertaining con film. John Cusack and Annette Bening are very good.
I love all the Jim Thompson perversity loaded in this movie but as filmmaking, I'm less convinced. There are good performances but the script is sloppy, full of half-formed ideas and entertaining but ultimately pointless flashbacks. And the film itself is just poorly made. But all that said, there is still plenty to enjoy here.
Hey look at this deadly serious movie about absolutely nothing that never really wavers from Decent overall at any point. Doesn't that make you desperate to watch it?
I guess I was expecting more of a stylish slickly made film with very violent scenes but this isn't that. It's a lot slower than that and kind of got boring to me by the middle. Not without its shining moments, "the grifters", doesn't warrant a watch other than to watch some fine performances by the main cast.
Every film Roger Ebert has given a four-star rating. This is an ongoing project.
From the NYT website:
This list is drawn from the second edition of The New York Times Guide to the…