Effortlessly engaging crime caper starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford as a pair of audacious con artists who plan to rip off Robert Shaw's greedy banker in 1930s Chicago. The recreation of the period is as meticulous and involving as the plot itself, hence the Oscars for the costumes, editing, production design, George Roy Hill's direction and David S. Ward's delightful screenplay. Given all that plus the most charismatic screen pairing since, well, Butch and Sundance, it's no surprise that this bit of movie magic won Best Picture too.
George Roy Hill
This crafty re-teaming of Paul Newman and Robert Redford (from Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid) drew seven Oscars and worldwide queues.
The Thirties' settings, in the hands of cameraman Robert Surtees, costume designer Edith Head and art director Henry Bumstead, veterans all, vividly recreate conditions of the period, and the banteringly humorous playing of the stars, as they attempt to relieve big-time shark Robert Shaw of his money, is immensely winning.
The film also revived the ragtime music of Scott Joplin, arranged here by Marvin Hamlisch. Amusing, exciting, ingeniously plotted and richly entertaining. Incidentally, the close-ups in the poker game are not of Paul Newman's hands but those of card expert John Scarne.