Ridley Scott's 'Matchstick Men' (2003)

I am not a Nicholas Cage fan. He's a decent enough actor and he generally does not embarrass himself, but I have never thought that he really owned a performance, that I could not see another actor performing the role as credibly or more credibly. My reaction to his performance in Matchstick Men is congruent with that assessment. He was fine and he did all of the OCD standards well, but I think that Jack Nicholson's performance in As Good as It Gets displayed more depth. And I don't even like Jack Nicholson or As Good as It Gets that much.

Honestly, I didn't care much for or about Roy until Alison Lohman appeared in the film. Her performance and interaction with Cage lights up the screen. Lohman brings such energy and subtlety to her character, especially for such a young actress. For me, this film is all about Lohman and not Cage. Sam Rockwell is also a nice addition to the cast as Roy's partner.

I liked this film more than I anticipated. From the first hour or so of story, I expected a typical father-daughter bonding movie with the Cage character overcoming his mental disease through his relationship with his daughter. I suspected that Frank was a little shady, but I did not expect the twist involving Angela, which elevated this film beyond that typical father-daughter bonding storyline. And the twists hold up pretty well after the film is over and the viewer has time to reflect, which is always nice. Yes, I'm looking at you, Rob Thomas.