Will Smith may begin Career Comeback with 'Focus'

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Will Smith’s latest film, “Focus,” became the most watched film during its debut this past weekend, however, its $18.7 million premiere failed to par with the actor’s more successful films such as “I Am Legend” ($77.2M open, $256.4M lifetime) and “Hancock” ($62.6M open, $227.9M lifetime). Smith’s new film appears to mark the beginning of a rebound on the heels of 2013’s “After Earth” which had a disappointing lifetime gross of $60.5 million. While many critics are quick to claim the actor has lost some of his audience appeal, there is no denying Smith is still at the top of his game as a smooth-talking, stylish con-man.

Focus” stars Smith as Nicky, a veteran con man who meets a young woman named Jess (Margot Robbie) and begins teaching her the art of his trickery, while seemingly falling in love with her. Three years later, while attempting to pull off another major heist, Jess unexpectedly walks back into Nicky’s life, leading to a downward spiral of twists and events.

As Smith says in the film, “I still got it;” and he really does, he still charismatic and fun to watch. “Wolf of Wall Street” actress Robbie holds her own alongside Smith with her seductiveness while still being innocent. The on-screen chemistry between Smith and Robbie’s characters is undeniable. What I like about writer-directors Glenn Ficarra and John Requa (Crazy-Stupid-Love, Bad Santa) is that their writing is always intelligent and their characters are always relatable. The style they choose with the cinematography, the editing, and the lighting works so well for this kind of film. It’s all glossy because the characters have to be glossy themselves, to get what they want.

If there is anything to criticize, it’s that some twists don’t make any sense or just weren’t written out all the way, yet you still can’t help but be in awe when they happen on screen. This is the film to see this weekend, if you’re still a Smith fan, you won’t be disappointed. If you just want to see a good con artist film, you definitely won’t be disappointed. Nicely recommended; a 4/5.

Smith has a full plate these next couple of years. The actor recently finished filming the sport/drama “Concussion,” which takes a look at how American football players suffer from major head injuries and life-long debilitating problems as a result of repeated concussions and efforts by the National Football League to deny it. The actor will soon begin production on the highly anticipated action flick “Suicide Squad,” slated for an August 5th, 2016 release, in which he plays comic villain Deadshot. Smith is also attached to “Bad Boys 3,” “Selling Time” and “The American Can.”