This week I decided to do another batch of con artist films.

Wednesday Double Feature - Con Artists - The Film Flam ManThe first on my list was Irvin Kershner’s The Film-Flam Man with George C Scott and Michael Sarrazin. Sarazan plays Curley an army deserter who is in hiding in Kentucky, who helps a man he sees thrown from a train. This man turns out to be Mordecai Jones (Scott) an itinerant conman.

Mordecai takes Jones  under his wing and partners with him to assist him in short cons, (the guy who “wins” at three card monte, and such.) after pulling a few hustles things get a little messy after Curley falls in love with a Bonnie Lee Packard ( Sue Lyon) a girl the pair store a car from. He starts to get sloppy, and the sheriff is beginning to close in on our heroes.

What makes this film fun is George C Scott on the top of his game, hamming it up as Mordecai with several other good comic performances, including Harry Morgan as the Sheriff and Slim Pickens as one of the marks, backing him up.

Wednesday Double Feature - Con Artists - The GriftersObviously, I’d heard the next film on my list, Stephen Friers’ The Grifters, for years. But to my embarrassment it’s one of those films you know is good, but never get around to it.

Based on the book of the same name The Grifters tells the story of three Con artists, Roy Dillon (John Cusack) a small timer who specialized in short cons, his Girlfriend Myra (Annette Bening) and his mother, Lilly played by Angelica Huston.

We begin as Roy is reunited with Lilly after a botched con at a bar hospitalizes him. This leads to a downward spiral of blood, betrayal, and greed.

This film was dark and quite depressing. I have been very much enjoying checking off my list of Stephen Friers films