Focus Blog Critique

Focus Critique

Focus, directed by John Requa and Glenn Ficarra, is a Drama – Romance film about the lives of a con artist, Nicky (Will Smith), and his understudy, Jess (Margot Robbie). Throughout the movie we enjoy many twists and turns to the plot that make the movie exciting to watch, images-1but at times stray the movie away from its plot, direction and ironically focus. The first 45 minutes of the movie were in essence plotless and did little for the film. There were a few moments where we were introduced to the characters and a little groundwork for the future of the movie was laid down, but overall it was wasted time that could have been better spent on the main portion of the plot.

Another issue in the movie was the transition between the first 45 minutes and the final portion of the movie. Or lack therefore of. The main issue here is that the first part of the movie felt like it had very little to do with the second part of the film. Most of the supporting characters have changed, the setting takes place in a different country, the job has changed and is more high pressure. 2lsa7vcWith that being said, little is done to help the viewer become accustomed to this change. Little to nothing is known about the missing characters from earlier in the film. The same is to be said about the lives of the main character. We know next to nothing about the main characters lives leading up to our reintroduction into their lives as well as how they got to where they. This gives it a feel as if we are just being thrown back into their life without knowing who the characters are anymore or what has happened since we last saw them. The absence of any types of flashbacks or clues as to what happened in the past reinforces the notion of not knowing anything that is going on in the movie, effectively leaving the viewer lost and confused.

Whose points of views are being told in this story?

We mainly get the point of the main character, Nicky, who is played by Will Smith. From his point of view we see how he works and all the strategies/ tactics they use.images Another prominent point of view in the movie is that of the supporting character, Jess, played by Margot Robbie. This is more of a contradictory point of view from the main characters as we get to see her emotions when he leaves, and when it seems as if they are on different sides.In the end though their points of view are very similar. One thing I wish we had seen more of though was the point of view of those who they were stealing from. One thing I did not like was that they were mainly stealing from the middle class people who roam the streets. Basically I saw myself as one of those people they could have been stealing from. I think it would have been more powerful or better if they had been stealing from the rich and wealthy who can afford the loss of a couple million better than the lower middle class who are devastated after losing a thousand dollars. Another problem I had with the film was the fact that the money they were stealing was not being given to anybody and basically was just taken for their own good. This created a dilemma in my conscience, as I subconsciously wanted to side with the main character’s  because of the camera angles and the fact that we are made to love and usually have empathy and compassion for the character. At the same time I realized that there was no reason for me to side with the main characters as they were criminals who steal from the non-wealthy and help nobody but themselves. A good illustration of what is wrong with the world today.

Photoshopped Art:

This is obviously a picture of a watch, which is one of the most commonly stolen items in the plot and one of the ways the two main characters get to know each other.  I chose to take a picture of my cousins gold-watch, and played around with lighting and other color-effects.








  • Directed by: John Requa, Glenn Ficarra
  • Made in: 2015
  • Other technical aspects: Used Final Cut Pro X
  • Country of Origin: United States of America



Independent Viewing: Cinderella

This live-action remake of Cinderella was released on February 13, 2015. The film was directed by Kenneth Branaghm, and it was shot in Buckinghamshire, England. Disney remained very loyal to the original animated version of Cinderella; in fact Mark Romanek was supposed to be director, but because he had a dark version in mind, he was replaced by Branaghm. Costume design was the aspect of the mise-en-scene that impressed me the most. Sandy Powell, who is a three-time Oscar winner, was in charge of the costumes. Each costume served as a mirror to the characters’ personalities. The stepsisters, for example, wear strident colored dresses that are ridiculously accessorized. In addition they sport tight, pompous curls and excessive make-up. Their dresses reflect their obnoxious attitude and reveal the ugliness of their souls. Ella, on the other hand, wears simple sky-blue dresses, natural looking make-up, and loosely braided curls. The most important costume of the film is Ella’s ball dress. Powell said she “wanted her to look like she was floating, like a watercolor painting”. The final product is composed of more than a dozen fine layers of fabric, more than 270 yards of it too, and around 10,000 crystals. It captures Powell’s intentions perfectly, and makes for some of the movie’s most beautiful scenes.

Though it was not my choice to watch Cinderella, I enjoyed it. As with all fairy tales it was rather superficial, but adequate for its target audience. Looking at it as such, a children’s movie, I can appreciate it more. Every shot was charged with beautiful seemingly natural light, enchanting decor and floral motifs, and expressive costumes.

Whose points of views are being told in this story?

Mainly, the story is told from Ella’s point of view. It offers small insights into other character’s thoughts, such as the explanation for Lady Tremaine’s bitterness.  It approaches the theme of abuse in a very subtle way, and sends a simple message about the importance of love, kindness,courage, and forgiveness.

For the art I made a drawing with watercolor and ink. cinderella