Box art for The Sting

The Sting

comedy, drama

After a friend is killed by the mob, they try to get even by attempting to pull off the ultimate "sting." No one is to be trusted as the twists unfold, leading up to one of the greatest double-crosses in movie history. The con is on!

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

ON for kids age 13
0 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
5 out of 5
3 out of 5
Positive messages
0 out of 5
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Smart, stylish caper -- but not for kids.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that this film contains several violent scenes, including several on-screen shootings. None of these deaths are terribly bloody. In this film, no one is on the right side of the law. The good guys are simply better at cheating than the bad guys, and their swindling is justified on the grounds that the man they are cheating has killed their friend. There is quite a bit of gambling, drinking, and smoking as well.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about the serious ramifications of a life of crime that are not addressed in this film. What are the risks involved with planning such schemes? Were these crooks driven to crime because of the Great Depression? If someone constantly lies and cheats others, can he ever be trusted, even by his closest friends?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

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    reviews counted: 0
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Audience Reviews

4 stars

The Sting is another one for my Kick-in-the-Ass list, meaning I want to kick myself in the ass for not seeing this sooner. Actually, I'd like to keep kicking until I hear my tailbone crack, I loved this movie so much. The ultimate con movie, The Sting is a superb blend of story, direction and acting. Paul Newman and Robert Redford were the very definition of on-screen chemistry. Robert Shaw was also great as their mark. Shaw was scary -- I'm talking Daniel Plainview or Bill the Butcher scary. Unfortunately after seeing years of copycats, I saw the twist coming a mile away but The Sting is still magnificent. I understand why this was my grandfather's favorite movie.

- mjgildea, Tuesday, August 24, 2010

4 stars

Heavy hitting cast with Ballin' Paul Newman, stern Robert Redford, Robert "A Shark Ran a Train On Me" Shaw, Mrs. Peacock, and James Earl Jones' father. Well written to the tee, really captured the 30's lingo even though I don't even know what that means. In reality I barely have any idea of what is going on in this movie. Hard to follow, you got to pay attention and not be running to the bathroom every other minute, blame KFC. Love that ragtime, not really, drop some beats Marvin Hamlisch.

- Chiefilms, Monday, April 19, 2010

5 stars

"Dukey, if this thing blows up, the Feds will be the least of our problems" In 1930s Chicago, a young con man seeking revenge for his murdered partner teams up with a master of the big con to win a fortune from a criminal banker. REVIEW Films are generally considered classics if they excel to a great level on a certain point (acting, special effects, script, etc). But the beauty about `The Sting' is that it gets a perfect (not necessarily outstanding) mark on all levels. The movie perfectly balances humour, enjoyment, style and charm with a subtle hint of gloss to create an all round brilliant movie. The film is done in a slick old fashion with a bright, exuberant feel. The majority of `The Sting' is set in 30's Chicago, not so much the hotbed of jazz, sex and murder in the current blockbuster hit. The image of Chicago is clearly a studio set with cardboard walls, but this adds to the old fashioned feel and the costumes, mannerisms, make-up etc. perfectly resemble the period in question. Above all else, `The Sting' is a sometimes vain, happy-go-lucky comedy. The heavier topics of murder and revenge don't get a chance to settle in, which is a good thing because the movie is best when it doesn't take itself to seriously. The soundtrack couldn't be better either. Scott Joplin's `The Entertainer' fits in with the environment that we are presented with. The acting is quite good, in particular from Paul Newman and Robert Redford in the lead roles. They make a perfect duo and the chemistry between the two always feels natural. Redford's more energetic performance is slightly better than Newman's sedated veteran con-man part. Generally good support from Robert Shaw as the stereotypical bad guy, Eileen Brennan and Charles Durning. The film is given the appropriate light touch so that even the most serious moments have that nostalgic glow to them. Another thing I like was the episodic division in the movie, so as each part is divided into chapters. `The Sting' is a simple but perfect movie, like a cross between `Paper Moon' and `Chicago' with the extra-added dose of glibness. Truly a classic if there ever was one.

- mrpopcorn, Thursday, February 25, 2010