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Can't really say I'm the biggest fan of George Roy Hill's directing approach (even though he won an Oscar for this movie) but there's still usually very little wrong with his movies.

Reason why I'm just not the biggest George Roy Hill fan is because his movie don't really have a very distinctive or good style to them. Throughout this movie I constantly kept wondering how much better this movie still could had been, if another director would had done it instead. For instance a director like Martin Scorsese would have been perfect and could had turned this movie into a true masterpiece.

But really, I still can't claim there's an awful lot wrong with this movie. It features a good story, nice characters and some great performances by its cast.

Even though Paul Newman gets first billed, it really is a Robert Redford movie. He plays the true main character of the movie and has by far the most amount of screen time in it. He also truly gives away one fine performance, as does Paul Newman of course. But has Newman ever disappointed in anything? I don't think so! The movie further more also stars Robert Shaw, as the movie its 'villain'. I actually at first didn't even recognized it was him, he looks and sounds totally different than usual, which is always the mark of a great actor and performance.

What makes the movie further more special and great to watch, in my opinion, is because it's a period piece. The movie is set in the '30's but got shot in the '70's. So what's so special about that? Well, we all known the modern movies set in the '30's and some might have seen some actual genre movies, done back in the '30's but I believe that '70's movie set in the '30's are a sort of rarity. It also has a totally different approach and vibe to it than a modern genre attempt has. It's focusing less on the visual aspects and it doesn't constantly attempts to impress you with any of its period costumes and set design. I don't know, guess I thought this was a refreshing thing to see and it made me really appreciate the movie all the more.

But of course there also really isn't such a thing as a solid movie without a solid story to it. It luckily is the sort of story that leaves room for some fun, next to its more dramatic and serious developments. It's a nicely buildup story and its very entertaining to see how the plot slowly thickens and more and more different characters start to get involved with it. There are multiple effective and interesting developments in it because of that, especially when the con starts to get more and more elaborate, up to a point that the viewers themselves don't even known who- and what things are part of the big con. Might sound confusing but it really isn't though. It's a pleasant movie to watch, that might have a far fetched story but it never feels like a completely unrealistic or ridicules one to watch.

Simply a great movie to watch!

8/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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