Combustible Celluloid
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With: Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Robert Shaw, Charles Durning, Ray Walston, Eileen Brennan
Written by: David S. Ward
Directed by: George Roy Hill
MPAA Rating: PG
Running Time: 130
Date: 12/25/1973

The Sting (1973)

3 Stars (out of 4)

Wanna Bet?

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Paul Newman and Robert Redford re-teamed after their successful ButchCassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) for George Roy Hill's The Sting, aDepression-era tale of con men. Redford gets the lion's share of screentime as a small-time grifter who wants revenge for the death of hismentor and partner. With the help of Newman, he sets up a complexhorseracing scheme to rope and capture a shady hood (Robert Shaw).Today, The Sting is still fairly entertaining, though its tricky twistshave been co-opted by many subsequent films, and there's no gettingaround the fact that the movie, at 130 minutes, is way too long. ButHill's dedication to the period detail and the film's bursts of energymake it a pleasant viewing experience. It was a hugely popular hit andwon the Oscar for Best Picture, though it's really not as good as MeanStreets, The Long Goodbye or Badlands, all released the same year.

DVD Details: Universal has released a deluxe two-disc set with re-mastered Dolby audio. Extras include several featurettes about the making of the film and about the writer and the director.

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