The world's best art forger (John Travolta) makes a deal with a crime syndicate to get an early release from prison, but in return he must pull off an impossible heist - he must forge a painting by Claude Monet, steal the original from a museum, and replace it with a replica so perfect that no one will notice. He enlists the help of his father (Christopher Plummer) and son (Tye Sheridan) and together they plan the heist of their lives!Written by
John Travola traveled to Hong Kong to study oil painting in order to prepare for his role in this film. See more »
Much is made of the Travolta character carefully selecting the perfect antique frame, mixing his own pigments using raw minerals, etc.. None of this has any effect on the plot. Travolta admits he will not create an exact copy, and regardless, the forgery is never inspected. See more »
The review that caught my eye, before I rented "The Forger", was "Travolta's best performance in ten years...". But then, just before watching it, I searched for more reviews and saw that some critics panned it. Well, I happy to say they are wrong—it's a pretty good movie, after all.
I mean, come on, critics! I usually agree with you—but saying this is too "slow paced" and that it has "two, conflicting, story lines"? I LOVED the pace, and the acting, and, especially the story line(s).
OK, so it does have two story lines going on—the forgery and heist, and the human interest about the forger's family (his dad, his son, his ex-wife who had not seen the son in years, the female detective...). So what? It's believable (as much as any heist story or human interest story can be) to the point that plot vs. sub-plot is just not a problem.
I thought Travolta DID give a heck of a performance. His pace fit the overall pace of the film, as did that of the other actors. And Travolta, who has had his share of sorrow in real life, looked to me like a man who has been there, done that. He looks the part and is very convincing.
Everyone actually looked pretty good (or properly bad-ass) thanks to some solid lighting and overall nice cinematography. (This is not some kind of "art" film, but nevertheless consistent in it's camera work.) The sound quality was good (a pet peeve of mine in some films) including the music which seemed to fit the film nicely.
As for the VERY best performance in the film, besides Plummer, who is always fun to watch for me... it has to be young Tye Sheridan. Nicely understated, smart, believable. I'm looking forward to his next film, whatever it turns out to be.
Finally, the director certainly knows a thing or two about film making, as, even with the somewhat slow pace, everything builds mostly evenly towards a satisfying ending. Of course the screenplay had to work too, for that to happen.
Bottom line, I'm glad I rented "The Forger". I enjoyed pretty much all of it, and even replayed a few parts to study how the film was put together. Probably no Academy Awards coming for this, but all cast and crew can still stand tall.
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