The Grifters

1990

Action / Crime / Drama / Thriller

Synopsis


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Director

Cast

Martin Scorsese as Opening Voice-over
John Cusack as Roy Dillon
Steve Buscemi as Kaggs
Anjelica Huston as Lilly Dillon
720p
814.36 MB
1280*720
English
R
23.976 fps
1hr 50 min
P/S 0 / 10

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by movieman_kev 9 / 10

Anjelica steals the show

Stephen Frears directs this amazing adaption of a Jim Thompson book, which deals with three grifters (a person who swindles one by means of deception or fraud) who are tied to each other relationship-wise. Roy Dillion (John Cusack) is a small town grifter recuperating after a punch in the stomach for being found cheating. He finds his loyalties torn between his girlfriend and estranged mother (Annette Benning and Anjelica Huston, respectively), both of which are big time high-stakes grifters. This film is tense, exiting, and well-acted, but make no mistake about it, even though Cusack is more or less the main character, this IS Anjelica Huston's movie through and through. Her acting in this seems to shine so brightly and generally be on a higher plateau than either Cusack or Benning can hope to ascend to in the film. One of my favorite movies.

My Grade: A

DVD Extras: Commentary with Director Stephen Frears, Screenwriter Donald Westlake and Actors John Cusack and Angelica Huston; 16 minute Making of featurette; The Jim Thompson Story featurette; Publicity and Production stills); and Trailers for "Serendipity", "High Fidelity", Grosse Point Blank", & "40 Days And 40 Nights"

Eye Candy: The future Mrs. Warren Beatty shows everything

Reviewed by ccthemovieman-1 10 / 10

Great Writing, Acting Make This A Superior 'Noir'

Here is a modern-day "film noir," if I ever saw one. You get sleazy characters with no morals, brutal attitudes, some interesting photography and a story that is not exactly a happy one - all the ingredients of a good noir. Since the film is a 1990 one and not the '40s and '50s (in which purists think that's the only period for noirs), you also get nudity and profanity.

The best part of the film, to me, is the fact that the three leading characters are so interesting. You never know what these intriguing characters are going to do next. There is an odd mother-son relationship, too - very odd, between John Cusack and Angelica Huston who play "Lilly and Roy Dillon." The third person among this trio of "grifters" (scam artists) is played by Annette Bening, who never looked prettier or demonstrated her lack of morals better than she did here as the wicked "Myra Langtry." You can see all of Bening in this movie, and I mean all. Huston, on the other hand, tries to look sexy but is too hard-looking and certainly no competition for Bening, in age or looks. But Angelica is a terrific actress and I thought her character, was easily the most interesting of the three leads. Cusack, meanwhile, gives an underrated performance: one of the best in his career.

Three supporting guys in here are fantastic: Pat Hingle as "Bobo Justus," J.T. Walsh as "Cole," and Charles Napier as "Gloucester Hebbing." Overall, this is a wonderful cast that does full justice to this unusual crime story.

The story has a mean edge to it most of the way, but that's the style of writer Jim Thompson, who is a very good crime author who wrote the novel on which this movie is based. He has written several fascinating books. Donald Westlake, who wrote the screenplay, is a prolific crime story writer.

There is not a lot of action in this film but when it occurs, it is shocking and brutal. This movie always entertains me every time I view it.

Reviewed by FunnyMann 8 / 10

Worth it

"The Grifters" is a quality piece of work that shows you a world you don't often see. It's a seedy little world, but a fun one to spend two hours in.

Whenever I pass this film on cable, I always stop to watch a few minutes (and often more) because it contains some fantastic acting. Anjelica Houston, John Cusack and Annete Bening act their little tushies off. Cusack's portrayal of a low-level grifter with an Oedipal complex the size of Texas is some of his best work. Based on "American Beauty," everyone knows that Bening can act, but anyone who saw "The Grifters" knew that long ago. She does a bang-up job as (let's be frank) a con-artist slut.

This movie does have a few implausibilities, but nothing that spoils it. Otherwise, nothing but good things to say about this one. Recommended.

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