The Sting

The Sting
Matthew Specktor

Soft Skull Press’s Deep Focus line of chapbooks on pop movies seems clearly intended as a less polished American cousin to the British Film Institute’s uneven series of similar books, and in fact they hold up pretty well in comparison. In this volume Matthew Specktor writes a kind of love letter to a film usually regarded today as a lightweight entertainment. The equation of the con with a movie audience’s suspension of disbelief (since “there is no greater con than realism”) is a point that seems tired now in our postmodern age (when we know that every movie is at least to some extent about movies), but Specktor’s reading of the film is still worth a look if just for his enthusiastic championing of a critical underdog.