The art of the con…
Posted by Jesse on December 27, 2007
I love a good con, don’t you? As a child, watching the A-Team was my introduction to the art of the con. I was quickly immersed in the drama of it all—the daring heist, the disguise, the action, the quick-wittedness…
The confidence game (in a nutshell) is any elaborate swindling operation where a “victim” places confidence in the swindler. In most cases there needs to be a group of con-artists to pull this off, which makes the whole operation so much fun to watch. :o)
Here are some of the best “con” films I would recommend:
Oceans Eleven (2001): An awesome lineup of actors (including George Clooney & Brad Pitt) play con-artists who attempt to pull off the biggest casino robbery in history. Fun and fast-paced with great characters. Of course based on Oceans Eleven (1960) but with a completely different ending. The Oceans Eleven Soundtrack has great music and quotes from the movie.
GlenGarry GlenRoss (1992): An all-star cast with Al Pacino, Jack Lemmon, Kevin Spacey and Ed Harris. A high-stress real estate agency gets an inside job. Another fast-talking great group of actors under the direction of James Foley pull off an edge-of-your-seat film using virtually no action, just intense dialogue.
Matchstick Men (2003): A film with many twists… Nicolas Cage’s character (with a nervous tick) finds his long-lost, seemingly innocent daughter, played by Alison Lohman. Also starring Sam Rockwell who plays a funny sidekick character. Directed by Ridley Scott.
Hustle (2004): This is a BBC Series which you won’t be able to get enough of once you start! We have the first three seasons here at the library. What I love about the characters in this funny series is that they seem like normal people–it makes the stories feel plausible. Very likeable characters played by Marc Warren & Adrian Lester among others.
Bourne Identity (2002): An amnesiac played by Matt Damon finds out just what kind of con he is in. I love Franka Potente’s character in this film because, in my opinion, she acts like any normal woman would act in all of the crazy situations they find themselves in. There are some great car chase scenes in this action-packed thriller. The Bourne Supremacy & Bourne Ultimatum films are great sequels. The whole series is based on books by Robert Ludlum.
Catch Me if You Can (2002): A true story of a con-artist, the 18-year-old Frank Abagnale, Jr. (played by Leonardo DiCaprio) who stole millions from Pan-Am. This film also stars Tom Hanks and is directed by Steven Spielberg. This film keeps your interest and was very well done.
The Usual Suspects (1995): A line-up of 5 suspects trying to find out who is the real “bad guy”. Stephen Baldwin, Gabriel Byrne & Kevin Spacey star in this film with many plot twists. A film, like Glengarry Glenross, that you definitely need to discuss afterwards!
Jesse Lee Harmon is the bookkeeper/library assistant at the Oliver Wolcott Library and enjoys playing guitar & singing her songs, cooking, crocheting, a game of shanghai rummy and a hot cup of mulled cider.