“The Sting” – Nathan’s Movie Challenge, Week 14
“Sit down and shut up, will ya? Try not to live up to all my expectations.”
The summary of this film in my mind goes something like this: Paul Newman and Robert Redford star as handsome movie actors in The Sting – a period piece con-job movie.
It’s got high production quality, detailed costuming, and a gallery of interesting characters. David Ward’s script effortlessly flows through each stage of “the con”, the direction by George Roy Hill is solid – bringing out the nuanced performances out of his actors, and the iconic ragtime music sets the playful mood of the film well – despite being somewhat anachronistic.
I had a good time. It don’t think it will particularly stick with me, and nothing was overwhelmingly impressive – technically or creatively – but it’s a solid movie. There’s something overall rather “television”-like about it. It’s much like a made-for-TV movie, only with more prominent stars, a more substantial budget, and a better script – if that makes any sense.
The Sting was at the time of this review at #50 on my Flickchart list of shame (ranked #134 among the best movies of all time). Here’s how it entered my chart:
The Sting vs. Primer
While I do quite appreciate Primer, it’s convoluted, and certainly wears its microbudget like a badge of honor. The Sting wins.
The Sting vs. Pontypool
I adore Pontypool. Super-high concept. Super fun. Definitely beats The Sting.
The Sting vs. Waiting for ‘Superman’
I’m not much of a documentary guy, but I do think Waiting for Superman drives its point home hard, and with effectiveness and clarity. That being said, The Sting is a better film overall.
The Sting vs. Amélie
Amélie will win against many, many movies – The Sting included. It’s got a certain spark many strive for, but fail to achieve.
The Sting vs. My Neighbor Totoro
I’m a fan of Totoro. It’s not quite the film Spirited Away is, but it’s a wonderous look into the emotion of a child through a fantastical lens. It’ll take the matchup over The Sting.
The Sting vs. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is not unlike a ballet. The choreography is impeccable, and the narrative is surprisingly affecting. It’ll win the battle against The Sting.
The Sting vs. Men in Black
While the sequels can’t hold a candle to The Sting, the original Men In Black puts up a good show and wins! It’s a modern classic sci-fi flick, with a memorable odd couple, and a host of larger-than-life characters and events help it to win the match.
The Sting vs. Multiplicity
Keaton, Keaton, Keaton, and Keaton are all tremendous. Andie MacDowell is adorable. Multiplicity wins.
The Sting vs. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest
If it was Dragon Tattoo, it would have been the victor. The sequels are a step-down. The Sting wins.
The Sting vs. Interstellar
I was disappointed with Interstellar. It’s still an above average movie, but it could have been much, much better. The Sting takes it.
The Sting vs. Erin Brockovich
I’m convinced Erin Brockovich is both the best character and the best film Julia Roberts has ever had. It beats The Sting.
The Sting is now ranked #518 out of 1393 movies on my Best Movies of All-Time chart.
Last up is All About Eve. In the meantime, check out the other films I’ve ranked during the challenge.