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There are few actors alive who are more likable than Nicolas Cage, even cast in the role of an obsessive-compulsive con artist who teaches his long lost fourteen-year-old daugher (Lohman) how to lie, con and steal. It's a gift. And he has it.
Sprinkled with a Frank Sinatra soundtrack, Matchstick Men is a charming story about a guy who leads the life of a "very bad man." He is one of those lowlifes, who along with his partner Frank (Sam Rockwell), cons little-old-ladies out of their savings over the telephone by promising an expensive tax- free prize when they purchase (in this case), a water filtration system. They seem to be good at what they do, but they become greedy and decide to take on a bigger opportunity--a rich and equally greedy businessman (Bruce McGill).
Angela immediately begs to get in on the deal, and Roy doesn't seem to have a problem with it. The talent for the con seems to run in the family. That is until hidden cameras catch her in the act and the two pros fear they will be hauled off to jail, so Roy throws in the towel in favor of family life. That's where the story takes off in an entirely different direction. <
I liked Matchstick Men...a lot. Cage is believable as a caring father. It's touching that he completely changes his life, almost overnight, for his daughter. Rockwell also does an excellent job at not only conning his victims, but the audience as well. Lohman is a little over-the-top here, but still the chemistry between she and Cage is evident until the very end.
Sir Ridley Scott made this film as entertaining as it was unbelievable. It's a con with a happy ending, and I wouldn't have had it any other way.