Focus Movie Review

Focus Movie Review
"Human behavior is predictable." ~Nicky

Will Smith is back in the theaters in the movie Focus. In it, he plays professional con-artist, Nicky Spurgeon, who is at the top of his game. He has a staff of over 30 “employees” that are all involved in the “business”. One night he meets Jess. Ironically she turns out to be an amateur con-woman, herself. Jess wants into the big time and after running her through some “tests”, Nicky takes her under his wing to teach her the fine art of “touch” in the con business. Somewhere along the way, Nicky falls for Jess, but he soon runs away. Is there a future for Nicky and Jess? Come on folks – it’s Hollywood.

I was excited about seeing this movie, first of course, because it stars Will Smith. Based on the trailers, I was looking for the usual Will Smith charm with a lot of action thrown in for good measure. On the physical front, Smith does not disappoint, he has kept up his muscular physique which he generously shares with the audience in several shirtless scenes. Unfortunately, the film didn’t quite pull off what I expected despite the tempting eye-candy.

The good points – Smith does share his sense of humor in several scenes which had me chuckling quite a few times. Also, not to give away any spoilers, but the movie does take several unexpected twists and turns which led me to say, “I didn’t see THAT coming.” Adrian Martinez does an excellent job as Nicky’s comedic side-kick. Martinez also played in American Hustle. Other notable actors round out the Focus cast, including B.D Wong and Gerald McRaney. Most importantly, it is a Will Smith film.

The not-so-good points – Aside from Smith’s character Nicky, we don’t really get the backstory of any of the other characters including Jess, played by Margot Robbie. You may remember Robbie from The Wolf of Wall Street or the short-lived television series Pan-Am. In Focus, she plays the almost stereotypical “not-so-smart” blond. As result of lack of backstory, it’s hard to become vested in any of the characters. Halfway through the movie, we leap into another country. I was somewhat lost for a minute before the story picked up again, but by that time I was wondering where the storyline was headed.

Overall Focus is a decent movie, but definitely not one of Will Smith’s best. I was definitely looking for a bit more hard-hitting action.

I would give this movie a three out of five stars.

Rating: R for language, some sexual content and brief violence
Runtime: 105 min
Release Date: 27 February 2015 (USA)
Directors: Glenn Ficarra, John Requa (wrote AND directed)

Enjoy this other Will Smith adventure:

Enemy Of The State

You Should Also Read:
Hancock Movie Review

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