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Catch Me If You Can [VHS]
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Product Description

An enormously entertaining (if somewhat shallow) affair from blockbuster director Steven Spielberg. Leonardo DiCaprio stars as Frank Abagnale, Jr., a dazzling young con man who spent four years impersonating an airline pilot, a doctor, and a lawyer--all before he turned 21. All the while he's pursued by a dedicated FBI agent named Carl Hanratty (Tom Hanks), whose dogged determination stays one step behind Abagnale's spontaneous wits. Both DiCaprio and Hanks turn in enjoyable performances and the movie has a bouncy rhythm that keeps it zipping along. However, it never gets under the surface of Frank's drive to lose himself in other identities, other than a simplistic desire to please his father (Christopher Walken, excellent as always), nor does it explore the complex mechanics of fraud with any depth. By the movie's end, it feels like one of Frank's pilot uniforms--appearance without substance. --Bret Fetzer

Customer Reviews:

  • Entertaining, but not great
    Leo plays Frank Abagnale, Jr., one of the youngest, most successful, and flamboyant con men in history. Not even an adult when he got his start, Abagnale passed off millions of dollars in rubber and fabricated checks across several different countries. Even more unbelievable, he was able to pass himself off as a substitute teacher, Pan Am pilot, Harvard graduate medical doctor, and a licensed lawyer. This is by no means a serious crime study, but a humorous and light-hearted look back to the recent past just before the rise of technology. This is a time when a charismatic grifter could easily exploit the common sense of trust and appearance to con the unsuspecting out of cash and just about anything else he desired. Catch Me If You Can does for conmen what Trainspotting did for heroin addicts. And not counting the jail time, at least in Abagnale's case, crime did indeed pay, and pay well.

    Personal bias: both DiCaprio and Hanks strain the definition of the term "actor". Spielberg is a hack of a director. Despite this, I did find this film enjoyable and entertaining. I thought it moved along well despite its length, though just about everyone else disagrees and feel at least fifteen minutes could have been lopped off.

    Catch Me If You Can relies on a longstanding and successful formula. Despite disliking crime in the real world, audiences love clever criminals in movies. In film, crime can be glamorous, exciting work. The Godfather, Heat, and Hannibal are just a few perfect examples of glamorized crime and criminals. As long as the criminal is generally good natured about his "craft" and doesn't needlessly hurt too many of the little people the audience will identify with him and forgive such moral lapses, though there are many exceptions. In this respect, Abagnale provides the perfect movie criminal, he steals only from large, faceless institutions. More importantly, he is never violent in his cons. This leaves the audience free to root for the bad guy unburdened by guilt. In The Godfather, Michael Corleone resisted the drug trade preferring traditional, insulated vices. The robbers in Heat also stole mainly from institutions, preferring low profile thefts and avoiding violence except when given no other choice. And finally Hannibal creates a great paradox, Lecter is violent and cannibalistic, yet the audience loves him and roots for him to elude the authorities. Why? Because Lecter is so regal and well mannered when not killing. And generally he only goes after those who deserve it in some way, he does not kill indiscriminately. These are the traits that make for a great movie criminal.

    Leo as Abagnale seems to fit the part the audience expects, someone handsome and charismatic. These are important since many of Abagnale's cons rely on nothing more than charm and some quick thinking and fast talking. The role does not demand much more form Leo, except a few scenes of loss and sadness over the breakup of his family. Otherwise he spends most of the film wide-eyed and amazed at the relative ease with which he perpetrates his frauds, much as the real Abagnale must have felt at the age of sixteen when he first set out on his crime spree.

    Catch Me If You Can would have us believe Abagnale's true motivation was the divorce of his parents after his small time conman father got caught by the IRS. Abagnale naively believed that he could steal back enough to buy back everything that had been taken from them, eventually reuniting his parents. True or not, this provides us with a rationale for his actions.

    Christopher Walken plays Frank's father, whose life of cons apparently rubbed off on his son. Walken brings his usual skill to the role and presents a convincing portrait of a common grifter. He believes the government is out to get him, and actually encourages his son to "stick it to the man" so to speak.

    Hanks succeeds in his role because it suits the character he plays best - a geek. Hanratty is a desk jockey, a paper chaser, not used to the excitement of chasing down a living breathing criminal. When he first tracks Abagnale down and moves in for the arrest, he's visibly shaken, the pistol trembling in his hand as he half-thinkingly displays his ID badge backwards to a startled maid. His Bostonian accent is passable, but appears and disappears intermittently throughout the film.

    Spielberg loves stereotypes, and every character in this and all his other truly successful films have been as stock as my Toyota Corolla. They're easy to work with, easy to cast and easy to direct. Try as he might to escape it, Spielberg is a populist director to the bone. He succeeds best when crafting simple action and adventure stories containing flat characters with grand style and a dose of imagination. When he tries to craft something with any great depth or complexity, it fails miserably. A.I. is the best example of this, it was a horrific commercial and critical failure.

    Perhaps he desires to transcend his proletarian roots in order to gain acceptance as one of the artistic greats (a Hitchcock, Scorsese or Coppola), no longer satisfied with mere commercial success. Catch Me If You Can may be a sign that he's finally accepted the fact that he just doesn't quite have it in him. Nothing fancy here, just good old fashioned Spielberg. I noticed plenty of heavy handed, golden light streaming through blinds into dusty rooms (I don't know what else to call it). That was the extent of artistic liberties taken that I could detect....more info
  • Terrific fun plus more
    I avoided this movie for a long time, thinking it was a grim cops-and- robbers crime thing. Well, it is a crime thing and Tom Hanks is the cop (FBI) and Leo DiCaprio is the robber. But it's anything but grim! Speilberg chose to tell this story, which could have been tragic. in a completely light hearted way. The only terrible scene is in the beginning when DiCaprio is languishing in a French prison. From there on, it's all up. The colors are bright, the atmosphere is light. And yet there's a lot of depth to it, as well. It talkes a really good director to pull it off so well.

    First of all, the story is amazing! We all know it's true; no one would make something like that up! Then, the cast is all-star! DiCaprio shines as a complex, tortured kid who is, at the same time, having the time of his life! The relationships are touching and so well handled. Christopher Walken is superb as the dad. Tom Hanks plays the 'alternate" father---as serious and humorless as the first one was charming and irresponsible. Hanks, DiCaprio and Walken, directed by Speilberg, in this terrific story---how can you miss?

    The DVD I saw had a bonus disk with great extras---including lots of footage of the original Frank Abegnale. After seeing the movie, I really wanted to see the real deal and he is obviously quite the guy! ...more info
  • Good enough to make you really care, but uneven.....
    I first caught the movie on HBO, from around the midpoint -- and from there, it was like a book that you couldn't put down. I then rented the DVD to see the whole movie -- and I couldn't believe how tedious the first portion was. If I had originally watched the movie from the beginning, I don't think I would have survived to where it got going. Rumor has it that Spielberg didn't wholeheartedly want to direct this film, and I think it shows.

    But it's still a 5/5, because when it's good, it's very good. You get fascinated about this genius con-artist, you can't help pulling for him, and you become interested enough to wonder about a lot of things. I couldn't resist googling the heck out of it afterwards, to find out more about what has become of the guy, to find out how closely the movie followed the actual story (answer: pretty closely but with some poetic license), and most especially to try to find out what became of that nurse that he got engaged to (who coincidentally has the same name as one of the actresses on "Desperate Housewives").

    Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks do well and are very good together, but it doesn't seem that the movie uses either one quite to the fullest; it's kind of like having Alex Rodriguez play 3rd base, which of course can have its points.

    Anybody else notice how much Hanks seems like Dan Aykroyd in this movie? The role actually has some resemblances to Aykroyd's part in "Ghostbusters," although of course this role is more serious and complex. Also.....anybody else catch the resemblance between DiCaprio's final scene with the nurse and his final scene with Kate Winslet in "Titanic"? I would guess that this was intentional; it almost had to be.

    My DVD had a defect at the very end: A final portion, lasting maybe a couple of minutes, got clipped off. I don't know if this was just one defective disc or if it's something systematic. In any event, if the movie seems to end with a clipped dialogue, that's not the real ending, and you're missing some stuff.

    And by the way, I couldn't find anything about what became of the nurse, Brenda Strong, and I'm not sure she existed in real life. If any of you hear anything, I hope you'll let us know. Presumably she DIDN'T wind up on "Desperate Housewives".........more info
    I've always liked wathing movies and with amazon you've made it great I am very pleased thank you...more info
  • A Genius of Crime
    When the idea for a film surfaced in the creative mind of director Steven Spielberg concerning the amazing activities of Frank Abagnale Jr. there might have been more than a little bit of dj vu involved. It was Spielberg who, as a young man fascinated by film, talked his way past Universal Studios security guards to watch films being made.

    Leonardo Di Caprio as Abagnale Jr. interviews a Pan American Airways supervisor to learn about the careers of their pilots for the ostensible purpose of writing an article for his high school paper. In reality he is seeking to learn enough about the lives and activities of Pan Am pilots so he can successfully impersonate them. Couple his skillful impersonations alongside a genius for manufacturing bogus checks and the FBI was left reeling while he drained millions from the banking system. His cover as a pilot provides him with the opportunity to cash checks in cities all over the world.

    Christopher Walken as Frank Abagnale Sr. plummets from a commanding community position as a successful businessman in New Rochelle, New York to a life in which he is compelled to scrap for his next meal. It all happens after he has troubles with the Internal Revenue Service and winds up under the oppressive yolk of owing a huge amount of money. After the Abagnales leave their mansion and move into a small apartment the marriage of Walken to his attractive French born wife, whom he had met during World War Two, ends abruptly in divorce. She promptly marries Walken's lawyer friend from the New Rochelle Rotary Club, played by James Brolin, as Di Caprio's world becomes shaken.

    Di Caprio had seen his father engage in shady manipulations, and so he put some of his father's techniques to use along with his own additions. Soon it becomes obvious that Walken was a rank amateur compared to his son, who has a genius for white-collar crime.

    The film's dramatic high point and chief story thread is the battle between Di Caprio to stay out of prison and hard working New York FBI agent Tom Hanks to put him there. Hanks is divorced and so literally married to his job that the white collar criminal is able to consistently reach him in his office on Christmas Eve. They develop a respect for each other over time, with Hanks admiring Di Caprio's brilliant skills, one of which is master escapist every time that he and his colleagues close in, with the criminal admiring the FBI agent's idealistic tenacity.

    The film, based on the true life exploits of Abagnale, heads toward the inevitable result of a confrontation where the criminal is arrested. It happens under the most dramatic circumstances in France. The story then takes another turn late in the film when the FBI realizes that it can use the criminal's white-collar criminal skills as a means of preventing future crimes.

    In real life Abagnale abandoned his criminal ways after doing his time, making large sums of money by consulting the corporate world in the area he knew best, that of security. Ironically Abagnale began by costing the corporate world millions and ultimately ended up by saving it millions.

    Martin Sheen has a role as a father whose daughter wants to marry Di Caprio. The wily young man of many identities meets her as a presumed "emergency room supervising doctor" and then swiftly switches to lawyer after passing the Louisiana State Bar. He then goes to work as an assistant prosecutor in the office headed by Sheen. ...more info
  • Great, but.....
    This movie is good in many ways because it is true to an actual event that fooled many people. Much time was spent to reconstruct the time elements of the movie to make it seem realistic. But...because of the sexual scene, I wouldn't want to show it to my grandkids. Too bad Hollywood seems bend on including such things in otherwise good family movies. All unnecessary....more info
  • Did Anyone Read The Book of this true story??????
    This movie is based on a true story!!!!! Read the book first. Leonardo DiCaprio is playing a real life con artist and forgerer - is that the right way to say that? The real life Frank Abagnale, Jr. lives and works for the FBI helping them solve forgeries today. It does not follow the book completely - they never do, but it does somewhat. It is a very entertaining movie anyhow. I highly recommend reading the book and then watching the movie....more info
  • The cast is exceptional with a counterfeiting, identity theft script.
    CATCH ME IF YOU CAN, is a movie partly about rehabilitation of
    addicts to check counterfeiting, identity theft, and similar acts, so
    suceeding in reforming what some may see as a character flaw of
    individuals who are compelled to that behavior. Indeed, much like the
    majority of day traders on the stock markets), their luch will
    eventually catch up with them, in terms of the odds the long term.

    A major weakness in this movie, is the dated time frame in which the
    activity was perpetrated, coupled with a lack of discernment in the
    choice of the soundtrack, (chosing stereotypical, cheesy numbers from
    the 60's and 70's). There is also a flawed filming technique, camera
    work by the Director, that not everyone will agree with. In fact, ET,
    Jurassic Park showed horrifically poor filming and presentation, yet
    they made a ton of cash, were crowed pleasers and major attractions.

    Another downfall is the script, and its flawed tendency to make
    comedy and clownish characterizations of a very serious matters that
    affect the financial markets, human lives, entire industries and
    markets, which is counterfeiting, impersonation of other people, many
    of wheom laugh all the way to the bank.

    Aside from those aspects, I won't hold it against the director, to
    release a movie that exceeds 2 hours vs. the standard 90 mins,
    considering the difficulty in telling the story contained in the
    book, encompassing a number of real life, biographical aspects.

    It's clear that the cast was exceptional, played by Di Caprio who
    brings plenty of world class acting, as does Martin Sheen, Chris
    Walken, raising the movie up a notch or two in quality.

    Reverting to the filming, there are just too many blurred, unsharp,
    poorly selected lighting situations for this aspect to pass
    unnoticed, or unannoying, suggesting a TV-like technique by the
    technicians. The DVD transfer was not a real wide-screen release that
    viewers were expecting, either. Also, the filming angles are much too
    predictable, yet the movie does redeem itself in the odd moments
    from its comical moments, that will show a split reaction.

    The final surprise, is the rhetorical matter of how someone can take
    tens of millions, and after 10 years or more, have nothing to show
    for, as all has vanished in thin air....more info
  • DiCaprio outwits the law in tight trousers
    The inspiration for this implausible story about a teenage conman who swindles his way to a cool $2 million before his 21st birthday is actually, as most people planning to purchase this DVD will know, a true premise. Frank Abagnale Jnr attained brief fame in the 1960s when he became the youngest American ever to appear on the FBI's most wanted list and his autobiography, published in 1980, chronicling his underhand escapades, became a cult bestseller.

    It appears that Steven Spielberg was one of those readers, or at any rate, was inspired to recreate this story on the big screen by some convincing source or another as this is not an orthodox Spielberg film. It fits neither into the category of his most recent, darker themed movies, A.I: Artificial Intelligence and Minority Report, nor the large scale epics emphasising tender children's emotions (E.T., Hook), large scale historical drama (Schindler's List) or blockbuster thrill sensations (Jurassic Park).

    No, Catch Me if You Can is something rather different. Ostensibly it is a dramatic comedy. Di Caprio is cast as the dashing, raffish Frank Jnr - except that his clothes for some reason are always a size too small. It is never quite clear why he feels the need to become one of America's most notorious criminals, but we are given the impression that deep family psychological anxieties play a large part - Frank Jnr is angry with his mother Paula who dumps his father for someone more successful and has a touching desire to please his father, Frank Snr (Christopher Walken plays this role to acclaimed success). Rapidly and ingeniously he passes himself off as a pilot, doctor and lawyer - sometimes through necessity when his is on the verge of being caught, sometimes, it appears, through sheer boredom. His evades his captors because he is so clever, but also because the finest brains of the FBI that pursue him are represented by Carl Hanretty (Tom Hanks) who, with his middle aged family problems, paunch and dogged rather than lightning quick intellect, frequently and comically lets Frank get away.

    This is not a deep film but several issues are explored. Frank's weakness for women is a continuous theme throughout the film, many different types of women - high class prostitutes (whom he cons) and the naive, brace wearing Brenda Strong (Amy Adams) who's tender innocence captures Frank's heart for a while and he becomes engaged to her until the need to escape from the law forces him away again.

    There is also a respectful bond between Frank and Carl the FBI agent. Carl respect's Frank's ingenuity and cunning, Frank sees Carl as almost a father figure and admires his persistence to bring him to justice. There is a clever solution that reconciles both these two factors. You'll have to watch the movie to find it out.

    So a Spielberg comedy. The man has nothing to prove, he can do pretty much what he likes now. It probably won't go down as one of the Spielberg greats, but it is slick, realistic and the plot keeps revolving with enough action to just about justify the length (over two hours). The 60s theme is done well too. As well as the tight trousers, the film is set to a minimalist jazz soundtrack with some evocative saxophone solos from Dan Higgins.
    ...more info
  • An enjoyable happy movie
    This is a great movie to watch for several reasons. First, it's an upbeat story of how an FBI agent helps a young man turn his life around from a life of crime to becoming a productive member of society. Second, the musical sound track is one of John Williams' best -- the movie is worth watching just for the sound track alone. Third, the performances of the cast are excellent: Leonardo DiCaprio as Frank Abagnale, the young man, Tom Hanks as the FBI agent, Christopher Walken and Nathalie Baye as Frank's parents, Amy Adams as Frank's fiance, Martin Sheen as Amy's character's father, and even Frank Abagnale himself, in a brief cameo as the French policeman in charge of arresting Frank when Frank is finally caught. Finally, the production design and cinematography are excellent. This is a movie that you can watch repeatedly and enjoy every time. ...more info
  • Cath Me If You Can
    This movie had some bad language & some dirty scenes & I threw it in the trash....more info
  • entertaining and intelligent
    CATCH ME IF YOU CAN is definitely one of the most entertaining and intelligent films I have seen in a long time. This is based on the real life story of the life of Frank Abagnale, Jr. A con man who impersonated an airline pilot, doctor and lawyer, all before the age of 21. He came by it honestly because his father was a businessman and con artist, who helped teach him everything he knew.

    Leonardo DiCaprio is boyishly handsome, engaging and diabolical as Frank Abagnale, Jr. Due to an unfortunate turn of events in his life (which I won't elaborate on, to spoil the plot), the young man turns to a life of pulling con job after con job, at just age sixteen. Not only does he manage to make close to $2.5 million, but he finds love, fame and notoreity in the public eye, all the while eluding the advances of Carl Hanratty (Tom Hanks), an FBI investigator hot on his trail.

    This film is intelligent, original and just superb (from the very engaging title credits, down to the intriguing conclusion). You will definitely be entertained..........more info
  • catch me if you can
    ,h am ajapanese university student and I watched"CATCH ME IF YOU CAN".
    This movie is thrilling and comic.This episode is half an existing genius fraud's life.he was a fraud when he was teenager.But he was gone after by a man of FBI.
    I thought the show was human warmth because an exciting of views between two men is very good.
    I would recommend this movie because it is very fun and human warmth is very emotional. ...more info
  • scamming & scheming for fun & profit
    if not for the miscasting of leonardo dicaprio in the lead role this could well have been a near-great movie. unfortunately leo (who i will admit does look better here than at any time since "titanic") gives yet another of his oh so obvious acting jobs: his attempt at a suburban new york accent is as painful as his vocal tricks in "gangs of new york" -- where does this guy get off trying this stuff, as if he were a classically trained brit actor? now to the good: tom hanks offers his most ingratiating performance in years (ever since he started to specialize in being tom hanks) as the sullen fbi agent who tracks down master forger leo; christopher walken is at his wierd best as the fallen idol father; the john williams score grabs you from the opening and never lets go. while the story requires a bigtime suspension of disbelief, it IS fun to imagine someone getting away with some of this stuff (as skewed thru the young mans eyes) rather than the reality of the desperation which compelled him to live his decade on the run.
    ...more info
  • Great entertainment!
    This movie is about an entertaining, engaging, story being delivered by a great director and great actors. Nothing more, nothing less. If your looking for an epic masterpiece, look somewhere else. But if you're looking for just a fun, entertaining movie, this is the one to get......more info
  • Great movie
    This is a excellent movies. It hard to believe but most of the events are true. How a kid could pull this off is remarkable. And the movie is great watch.
    Rick...more info
  • Impressive to the Last Scene
    Let me get this straight. A boy learns, on his own, how to fake everything from sick notes to college diplomas. The government is after his father for every penny in every paycheck. They want the house, the stocks, bonds, the car, right down to the pocket change. The father won't accept anything his son gets because of pride and stubornness. He's a doctor, lawyer, pilot, and a check fraud agent. How it is that he did all that is beyond me and this movie.

    I haven't read the book. I'm one of those guys that likes movies over books. Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, The Rainmaker, etc. I don't know how much is real but this is good quality entertainment. If they used Jerry Bruckheimer in the scripting, it would've done even better than CSI...more info
  • Ethics of Love, Loyalty and Honor
    Spielberg's most recent films have emphasized ethical questions. This movie looks at some of these questions and more:

    - Is it ethical or healthy to ask a child to choose one parent as more primary and beloved than another? The boy is asked to "just pick one" of his parents to have primary custody of him. This tears him apart and faced with the choice of choosing only one as primary, he runs.

    - When your real parents do not provide you with solutions that make sense, is it okay to choose other father figures who do make sense? When Frank Abagnale, Jr. finally encounters a man who loves him more like a father should, is it okay for Frank to choose to emulate him more than he emulated his own father?

    - Why would a man like FBI Agent Carl Hanratty care so much about someone who wasn't even a friend or family member?

    - Who should you honor? How should you act? How should you pursue wealth? These are key questions this movie explores.

    The cognitive framework of "No slave can serve two masters, for he will either love one and hate the other, or hate the one and love the other" is a foundational concept for some people. It is a concept followed to support their religious, patriotic, and military exclusive loyalties. This type of thinking scares me and misleads others. The irony is that slaves don't serve one master. Any society that supports slavery ends up requiring slaves to serve many masters. Slaves are subservient to most any member of the preferred class. Further, slaves get very little discretion as to who they are allowed to love and who they are allowed to hate. Those choices are dictated for them.

    The "No slave can serve two masters" is a principle discussed originally in relation to the pursuit of wealth. On its face, it suggests that a person cannot act like a slave in relation to the pursuit of wealth. If they are a slave to God, then they must hate the pursuit of wealth. This makes no sense to me. As if slaves had too many advantages already. Now they're not supposed to even love the pursuit of wealth? Wealth can be defined as a state of being rich; prosperous; affluent. Wealth generally means that you have worked hard to protect your family by storing up resources and making alliances, reducing their susceptibility to hunger and desperate circumstances. The pursuit of wealth is usually a healthy thing for poor people to pursue. We all balance many competing interests. And to pursue one interest does not mean you have to hate all the other interests that may compete with the one interest. That type of thinking destroys relationships, progress, and health.

    Adam was supposedly kicked out of Eden because he sought knowledge beyond what "God" told him to consider - he ate from the tree of good and evil, the tree of knowledge. I gotta tell ya - most days, I follow Eve's tempations and try another fruit. I think both Frank Abagnale Jr. and Steven Spielberg do too. Pick a cliche a day to refine away.

    When people are no longer treated like slaves, nor expected to act like slaves, things improve. Whenever I hear concepts based on "No slave can serve to masters" thinking patterns, I remember my parents. Unlike Frank Abagnale Jr., I had extraordinary parents. They divorced when I was a toddler. They NEVER asked me to love one of them more than the other. By both of their words and actions, they taught me two principles: A good parent, when asked to love one family member as more primary than another, declines that offer. A good parent communicates equal love to all their children. Maybe a slave can't serve two masters who have different and conflicting priorities, but a beloved child sure can. Children can sometimes find ways to love both, ways that adults have trouble finding. Both in the movie and in life, Frank Abagnale Jr. eventually found ways to love and honor both his parents and the strange and unusual FBI agent Carl Hanratty....more info
  • Entertaining Impostor Movie
    "Catch Me If You Can" is a very enjoyable movie about a con artist par excellence. He is an alternative version of the Tony Curtis ( "The Great Impostor" ) theme.
    Most people are propagandized to believe that great impostors only perform criminal misdeeds or impersonate a multitude of occupations they are illegitmately qualified to perform. However there are alternate variations of great impostors: (1) individuals with multiple personalities who may not be criminals and (2) individuals with highly ambiguous behavior, appearances and language usage. The English poetical playwright William Shakespeare aptly described humans in his phrase: "all the world's a stage" and he uttered that we (all human beings) are "actors". The great impostor psychopathological syndrome is a catch-as-catch-can "catch me if you can" extreme application of this justly famous insightful Shakespearean quotation; for we are all truly impostors in our individualistically distinctive ways....more info
  • Best comedy ever
    This comedy is the best I have seen in years. Decaprio did a great job and other actors did so as well. The plot of the movie is amazing, plus it is a true story which makes it even funnier....more info
  • Real life is better than fiction
    This film was recommended to me. I was not disappointed. It is incredible to think that there are real people out there that are this clever (a bit scary too). The most amazing thing was to find that his life of crime was so exceptional, that he was able to use his knowledge for good later. An amazing true story and a "must see"....more info
  • Catch me if you can
    I ordered the movie for my father for christmas and when he opened it, the dvd was worped and would not work, so I am going to try and send it back but we live in oklahoma and I live in Tulsa and my father lives in another town. The problem is we have had a big ice storm and we have not been able to get together since christmas and he did not discover the problem until i had returned back to tulsa,so just one of those things but hopefully I can return it thanks for asking Sally Robertson...more info
  • A Tender, Entertaining Film About a Man Running From Himself
    Frank Abagnale, Jr. has been raised on images of a family that doesn't really exist--a romantic and lasting love affair between his WWII vet dad and his French mother; his father's booming stationery business; a thieving kind of resourcefulness. He worships no one so much as his own father, although the images Frank JR glimpses through his rose-colored glasses aren't so much reality as they are the landscape his father has created for him to see.

    So, when his parents split early on in the movie, after his father's troubles with the IRS finally bring their family finances crashing down, Frank Jr is asked to choose--his mother or his father, and it's an impossible choice (which any child of divorced parents certainly feels in this moving scene.) Frank's choice? He takes off running, hence the title and it's initial confrontation, though Frank's as haunted and hounded by FBI Agent Henratti (sp?), played by Tom Hanks as he is his heartbreaking childhood.

    Frank proceeds to run from one end of America to the other, criss-crossing in a trail of bank fraud, check kiting and the like (he's a "paper hanger", in the words of Hanks' character.)
    But as the story unfolds, and it's certainly great entertainment to watch DiCaprio's Abagnale foil society, financial instituions and school bullies, it's as much about the elusive things he's running *toward* as the past he's running from. In the end, I found this to be a melancholy-yet-uplifting tale about a young man's search for authenticity, a father, and roots. Loved it, through and through!
    ...more info
  • Roller Coaster Ride Story With A Great Cast!
    This movie is a lot of fun to watch. Seeing how Leonardo Dicaprio's character Frank Abagnale transforms himself step-by-step from a small-time trikster to an international conman worth a million bucks is pure entertainment. What's more, this movie is based on a true person and actual events, which makes it even more incredible. For those of you who truly enjoys this movie, I recommend you read the book version, which is a easy, fast and fascinating read, and will take you on a ride through more jaw-dropping stunts by Mr. Abagnale.

    Special credits to Dicaprio, for those of you who had groaned and whined during the three hours of "Titanic", this should serve to prove that the boy who tries too often and too hard to be a man on-screen does have real acting skills (if you're still not convinced, then check out "What's Eating Gilbert Grapes", in which he plays a retarded boy, or "This Boy's Life", co-starring Robert de Niro). He portrays his conflicted character very well, who's naive, cunning, self-centered and love sick all at the same time. Honorable mention also goes to Christopher Walken, who plays Dicaprio's father. Walken carries the role with his own inevitable "Walken personality" (doesn't he always make a role by playing just himself in every film?), but also incorporates the necessary elements of a father and husband at loss.

    This DVD also includes special features, such as commentaries by the real Frank Abagnale. The whole film's clever and entertaining, and it's a good thing that you'll laugh more than you'll have to think....more info
  • Pretty Interesting Look At An Impersonator
    This is kind of an odd story, another one of those based-on-a-true life tales. This was hyped up a little too much when it came out so I expected more than what the film delivered. However, it was still a decent yarn about a kid who impersonated people in different professions and forged checks along the way. He did all of this in his teenage years.

    Leonardo DiCaprio plays his normal cocky role while Tom Hanks is the straight- and-narrow looking FBI man on his trail. Although not a tense thriller, the movie holds the viewer's interest throughout the 2 hours and 20 minutes with the last half hour being the most interesting, capped off by a satisfying ending.

    The only thing I didn't enjoy watching was DiCaprio (as "Frank Abagnale") taking advantage of genuinely-nice girls. This guy was no hero, believe me....more info
  • Well made glorification of a criminal
    I have to admit that I read Abagnale's book before I even knew they were making a movie of it, and I came away a little repulsed by him and his actions.

    The movie follows his life story (and therefore the book) pretty faithfully. Since the man is a compulsive liar, I wonder how much of his lying altered the story of his life and therefore the movie. The movie makes him look like a creative, quick-thinking criminal genius, who turned his life of crime into a multi-million dollar fortune after he went straight. He's basically treated as a hero who was twisted by his father and his parent's broken marriage into an amiable but harmless conman. His criminal career is treated as a fun lark; sure, he did prison time, but afterward, all is forgiven and he becomes rich legitimately. No harm done. Except for all the bank tellers who cashed his bad checks, and were fired (yes, that's what they did back then, and sometimes still do today); except for the people whose lives he endangered by pretending to be a supervising physician, it's a miracle he wasn't called on to perform any real medical task; except for anyone whose legitimate check was rejected because of the damage conmen like Abagnale have done to the trust of strangers in this world.

    Ebert refers to Abagnale's "accomplishments" in his review; in my mind, they were the actions of a criminal, and he gets off pretty lightly in this flattering portrayal. I know, I shouldn't take it this seriously, but this is a true story - real people suffered by his actions. Technically the movie is well done and captures the feel of the era perfectly with good performances, especially by Christopher Walken as his bitter, anti-authoritarian father.
    ...more info
  • Light hearted Ripley
    Sunday, February 13, 2005 / 3 of 5 / Light hearted Ripley
    Tom Hanks chases after Leo DiCaprio in the late 60's as `teen' Leo impersonates an airline pilot, doctor, lawyer, etc. I never felt deeply involved with the characters or the story, it was pretty superficial and not particularly compelling. It was an effective time waster though, Hanks gives an understated and tired performance as the chaser. Plays a bit like the Talented Mr. Ripley without the psychopathic baggage....more info
  • The perverse intelligence !
    The dramatization of this true story of Frank Abagnale Jr has been played brilliantly for Di Caprio giving to date the best role of his career . He gives the character the cynicism , the radiant magnetism and the charismatic elegance tomake it possible all the clever tricks through his life .
    Walken is terrific as his father and Nathalie Baye that greta french actress is perfect in the role .
    Tom Hanks looks too overacted to be a FBI agent . Can you really believe in an agent with such profile in this exigent organization ? Give me a break!
    Obviously the script serves to introduce us in the clever world of this mature teenager who breaks all the rules and resolves all the possible obstacles . This talented boy makes the whole journey of the selfish and inmature character . Finally he comes back to the mother embryo and this is the cause for his eventual perdition . Holy Freud and your Oedipus complex you solved the case worked out as a silent and celestial Sherlock Holmes . (Or perhaps Spielberg made a secret homage to the Seven-percent solution that famous film of Herbert Ross of 1976?)
    The script is marvelous and meticuosly edited . A worthable work !
    ...more info
  • Supremely entertaining
    Shallow to it's core, Catch Me If You Can is still a supremely entertaining visual blast courtesy of Steven Spielberg. Leonardo DiCaprio steals the show as teenage con-man Frank Abignale Jr., on the run from FBI Agent Carl Hanratty (Tom Hanks) as he continues unbelieveable impersonations one right after the other. Were it not for the excellent, dynaminte cast and Spielberg's visual flair, Catch Me If You Can could have been disasterous, but the performances from DiCaprio, Hanks, and Christopher Walken in an Oscar nominated role as Frank's father (he is undoubtadly the highlight of the film) make the film much better than it should be. Also starring Jennifer Garner, Ellen Pompeo, and look for TV's Angel star Amy Acker in a small role....more info
  • Extremely entertaining trickster!
    This movie has a great storyline and was perfectly cast. I loved Tom Hanks' accent! It wasn't completely obvious what was going to happen next like in a lot of other movies that come out. I had never heard of this guy and I think that it's a really cool story and I'm very glad they made a movie out of it. I give it a 4/5 because it showed the story of this guys life in an entertaining and comic way without completely leaving out how hard certain parts of his life must've been.
    Extremely entertaining!...more info
  • Necessity Is The Mother Of Invention!

    Catch Me If You Can is like a good book you can't put down!
    This is another excellent Spielberg film. It is the true story of a most fascinating life.
    Frank Abagnale, Jr. is a chameleon, ever changing as the need arises.
    Leonardo DiCaprio, as Frank, is perfectly cast as a man on the run,
    while the always believable Tom Hanks portrays his part as the FBI agent in pursuit of Frank excellently.
    Many of the security safeguards we use today have been created by the inventive genius
    of a man whose life and survival hinged on deception.
    As the saying goes, truth is stranger than fiction and,
    in this movie, that adage is indeed proven to be true.
    Do yourself a favor and 'Catch This One If You Can'! ~ Mrs. B. ...more info
  • Spielberg's "Catch-Me-If-You-Can-Like-Hitchcock's "Marnie"
    Like Hitchcock, Steven Spielberg must have been yearning to produce and direct something similar to "the master's" opulent 1964 Universal Production entitled, "MARNIE". Just as Hitchcock's main title character, 'Marnie' - Spielberg presents a similar type of a psychological-compulsive-pathological liar and thief, only this time - the attractive leading character is a man named Frank Abagnole, Jr., who is craftily played by Leonardo Di Caprio (who appears as - like Hitchcock's "Marnie"- a blonde, before both characters metatheticalize identities).
    Where in Hitchcock's title female character in "MARNIE" ends - Spielberg's identical leading male character in "Catch Me If You Can" begins - at least when he (Spielberg) attempts to exude additional depths and colors with subtle comic and serious nuances of the sexually charming "catch-me-if-you-can-kind-of-like-Hitchcock's `Marnie'-kind-of-character" channeled essence with Di Caprio's leading role.
    But here-in lies one major flaw and poses a question to the problem... When does a joke about compulsive thievery and false identity's go too far? And when should we - the viewer (or voyeur), stop laughing at Di Caprio's Frank Abagnole character and begin to emphasize with this trapped animal in a corner? I did - and far earlier in the picture then the rest of the audience-when Frank realizes that his mother and father will never reconcile - yet still refuses to accept this news from his Father - Frank, Sr. - his "real" Father who now works as a mailman (whom by the way, was brilliantly played by Chistopher Walken). Frank, Jr. - upset about who and what his Father has now become - runs out of the tavern and out of his Father's life. It is when we (the viewer) sadly hear Frank, Sr. (Walken's character) cry out, "So, where are you gonna run too, now kid... huh? Go ahead... run... keep on running... Where're you gonna run too, now?" These lines are the most profoundly sad and insightful comment ever made about both of these "just-like-Father, just-like-Son" deeply flawed and sorrowfully hurt characters.
    I think Spielberg's picture not only scratches the surface of a Father and Son relationship and the "lack there of" in one, but the movie then begins to extol a chance of salvation and a future hopeful glimmer - at least for the son, Frank Abagnole, Jr..
    Frank's often "shaky" rehabilitated transition repeatedly arrives in a sort of angelic "serogate" Fatherly type of way - fittingly and unknowingly disguised as the clumsy FBI agent named Hanratty - brilliantly played by Tom Hanks.
    After viewing this DVD you'll notice many additional compulsive patterns and similarities with Hitchcock's leading title character, "MARNIE" with Spielberg's leading character, Frank Abagnole Jr. The insightful paradoxical make-up of both characters - each strikingly mirror each other so complete - like dual shelf bookends. ...more info