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review by Bobby Blakey

When handled properly a good heist and/or con flick is one of the most fun film experiences when handled right. The latest, Sharper looks to delve into the world of the long con and features a great cast including Julianne Moore, Sebastian Stan, Justice Smith, Brianna Middleton, Darren Goldstein and John Lithgow from The Crown and Andor director Benjamin Caron. Could this flick offer up a con worth joining or will it miss the mark?

Sharper follows a neo-noir thriller of secrets and lies, set amongst New York City's bedrooms, barrooms and boardrooms. Characters compete for riches and power in a high stakes game of ambition, greed, lust and jealousy that will keep audiences guessing until the final moment.

Heading into this film I knew very little about it other than it was going to be going with a con of some sort. It does a great job to set it up and bring all the necessary twists and turns to keep you on your toes until the very end. Sure it isn’t overly hard to figure out what is going on or where it is heading, but it is handled well enough to still entertain.

What helps the film elevate beyond the average flick from this genre is that it is broken down into chapters with each focusing on a different characters journey. Not all of them are just the story of this current possible con, but also the journey that got them to this point which gives it more depth for each story.

The cast are all great with only John Lithgow not getting near enough screen time for me. He is great in the role, but I just always want more Lithgow when he is around. It’s interesting watching what appears to be a love story that soon shifts into something else. These elements require chemistry and everyone has great chemistry whether it be family or romantic relationship.

I got a bit worried initially as the story is a bit slow in the first arc, but it is necessary for the set up that comes later. Sebastian Stan steals the show bringing a variety of personas to the table in each story arc and developing into something you really likely, but also know you can’t trust.

In the end the story ended up working well and bringing all the fun to the story. This was way more than I expected and hope it finds the audience it deserves.

Decide for yourself and check out Sharper streaming now on Apple TV+.  

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