The 1973 Paul Newman (Henry “Shaw” Gondorff) and Robert Redford (Johnny “Kelly” Hooker) classic, The Sting – set in the heart of the 1930s Depression – pitted the bright and brazen young con-men against one of Chicago’s toughest mobsters in an effort to relieve him of his ill-gotten gains.
The film reveals the protagonists’ tactics, highlighting the importance of “the mark” and “the play” on the ‘mark’; “pigeons” (particularly easy ‘marks’) get taken like snacks at a Sunday barbecue and the big-con, which involved deploying a scam known as “the wire”.
Double-crossing, greed, avarice, hubris and arrogance provide a heady mix in a high-stakes gamble (It’s a great film, by the way).
But, at the heart of it all, was the ‘bare-faced lie’.
Much like those calamitous warnings about imminent global incineration, used by renewables…
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