Thursday, June 24, 2010

Catch Me If You Can (2002) Movie

his is one of my favorite movie, based in real life story

I will post the review and links here.

Enjoy reading and surfing.

Rated             PG-13 for some sexual content and brief language.
Runtime          : 140 min.
Director          : Steven Spielberg
Writer             : Frank Abagnale Jr. (book) and Stan Redding (book)
Tagline           : The true story of a real fake.
Cast                : Leonardo DiCaprio, 
                          Tom Hanks, 
                          Martin Sheen.
Genre              Action/Crime/Drama

Most memorable quote
: "Do you want to go to prison? You'll have to catch me first."

Movie Review

Catch Me If You Can begins with one of the most enjoyable and captivating title sequences I've seen in a movie. In a fashion very similar to early James Bond features and other period serials, flat, one-dimensional, 60's style graphics and human silhouettes playfully slide across the screen, revealing the credits, setting the mood, and tipping the story's hand. All the while, a jazzy retro John Williams number builds to a crescendo in the background and the movie opens to the set of To Tell the Truth, further evoking the mood and the mindset of the 60s. We immediately understand that the tone of the movie will be laid-back and fun.

Leonardo Di Caprio is Frank Abagnale Jr., a real life imposter who for years duped airlines, hospitals and banks out of nearly $4 million - all before he was 21 years old. DiCaprio plays his role with such an undoubtful calm and persuasive demeanor that the real Frank Abagnale was convinced that Leo was the right man for the part.

Tom Hanks plays FBI special agent Carl Hanratty who spent several years following Abagnale's trail of fraud and deception. Hanks seems content playing it low key letting the story ferrment around DiCaprio as Abagnale. Although he delivers a pedestrian performance that deserves no special mention, he and DiCaprio make a wonderful pair on the screen, feeding off each other in a way that makes you wonder if either would have been so good without the other. In an early scene, Hanratty has Frank cornered in a hotel room and it is at this point that we learn of Frank's charm and wit that enable him to escape from Hanratty's custody and go on to scam the world for so many years.

Frank leaves his broken family and bankrupt father (Christopher Walken) at the age of sixteen and runs off into the streets of New York City with a checkbook to an account containing $25 and a head full of endless creativity. What started as a ploy to cash a few Pan Am Airlines payroll checks lead to Frank donning a pilot's uniform and hopping around the world in the planes' jump seat. He draws real pilots into his confidence by speaking "pilot speak" that he learned from movies and manuals.

We learn that Frank's real intention is getting his now divorced mother, Paula, played by the stunning Nathalie Baye, and father back together again. To somehow reassemble the broken parts of his family, he buys his Dad a Cadillac and gives him money with the hope that he can get his business out of bankruptcy and win back his wife. This part of the story was the least interesting to me save for the wonderful performance of Christopher Walken as Frank Abagnale, Sr. It's what we expect from Spielberg though - delving into the drive and inner workings of the human mind (The Color Purple andMinority Report). However, being the master that he is, he doesn't overindulge in Catch Me If You Can and we are quickly back on track. Frank's ambition and motivation is not what we are interested in here.

We are treated to more of Frank's sly and cunning behavior after he falls in love with a candy striper, Brenda (Amy Adams), while working as a doctor at a New Orleans hospital. While joining her family for dinner to ask for her hand in marriage, he mentions that he obtained his doctorate from Berkeley Medical School. Upon learning that Brenda's father (Martin Sheen) also attended Berkeley, we get an insight into Frank's quick and masterful mind as he talks his way out of the bind and casually mentions that he wants to become a lawyer - and he does just that. He passes the bar exam by studying for a couple of weeks and goes to work for Brenda's father as an assistant district attorney.

I won't give away the methods of his con games or the techniques of his trade, and I do understand that a lot of the story is fabricated for interest and drama, but once the con is on, it doesn't seem to matter any more. Although Catch Me If You Can is brimming with great achievements, in front of and behind the camera, it is about the story. It takes off from the opening credits, quickly gains altitude and soars high for the full 21/2 hours.


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