Focus – A Movie Review

I didn’t watch the trailer before going to the cinema, at least not recently. I’m getting into a habit of not watching any more trailers, which has been triggered by the directors who have gotten into a habit of showing the whole movie in said trailer.
That being said, I did know the subject of focus and it sounded good on paper.

The cast didn’t necessarily seem to be the perfect cast for the roles they were in, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t do a good job.
I personally like Will Smith. Mostly for I Am Legend, The Pursuit of Happyness and Seven Pounds. He has some other good movies as well, but this trio hit home for me and made me add him to my favourite list.
The main actress was Margot Robbie. I’ve seen her before only in The Wolf of Wall Street, where she did a good job. Other than that she doesn’t have many other productions.

Will Smith plays the role of a notorious conman who is intrigued by Margot Robbie’s character when she tries to pull a con on him. This leads to him teaching her a thing or two, then taking off, but making sure she can find him, if she really wanted and was willing to work for it.
After letting her join his crew, they work a major event in New Orleans.

After that, the movie takes a turn of events which I didn’t expect, and that brings me to the ability to surprise, which this movie has plenty of.
One of the nicest thing I liked about the movie was the brief explanations of the psychology behind the cons. For example something that played and important role in the movie was priming, which is essentially a subtle memory effect which is triggered when one is exposed to a certain stimuli over and over again. A crude example would be if you would hear that the product was good on tv in the background, while doing something else, and perhaps also see a lot of that product on billboards while driving to work, you will likely buy the product next time when you are in a store. So, obviously the effect of priming is also hoped to be achieved by advertisers.

My brain automatically compared it to Matchstick Men, another movie which I enjoyed and which showed some conmen in action. That being said, in Focus they chose to show significantly more cons in succession, so that you didn’t actually have time to question or process all of them, that significantly reduces the chance that you will start complaining about flaws in the cons. The ones that I did manage to process seemed to be pretty accurate, speaking from other things I read or have seem about on TV.
Certainly every con looked much better in the movie because they took the time to explain it.

All in all, mostly because of the writing, I will give it 4 out of 5. A movie worth watching for sure.

If you saw it, I would love you to tell me your opinion down below.