Catch Me If You Can ★★★½

The script is dead weight, which Spielberg manages to overcome only once Frank Jr. leaves home. The opening 20 minutes is so clunky in its attempt to answer a question we have no reason to ask yet (why does Frank Jr. do this?). The scene with Frank Sr. later (“Tell me to stop.”) does this work more subtly, movingly, and efficiently than a dozen earlier scenes.

DiCaprio gives one of his best performances, discovering his charm and letting the instability peak through without ever pushing into Jared Leto overacting. Also, slow clap for the casting director, who in 2002 pairs Frank Jr. successively with pre-Grey’s Ellen Pompeo, pre-everything but Spider-Man and Wet Hot Elizabeth Banks, early Alias Jennifer Garner, and pre-Oscar Amy Adams.

inessentials liked these reviews