A Closer Look At 1973’s The Sting

There can be no denying the fact that over the past few decades, both films and casinos have each formed an important part of the world of entertainment as a whole. Each one appeals to its own respective audience and over time, has managed to establish and position itself in its own unique way. But what happens when those two worlds collide? What happens when the world of film meets that of gambling? Well, if we are to look back on history, we would discover more than just a few exciting, iconic movies set in casinos, many of which have left quite a legacy behind. One such movie is The Sting, which was released on Christmas Day of 1973.

The Setting

The Sting is set in Chicago in September of 1936. The overall plot of the movie is quite a complicated one, but it moves through various different locations as the action develops and main characters play real money pokies . Most of the characters in the movie are either conmen or those seeking revenge on the conmen. Some of them are also avid gamblers, and as a result most of the action takes place in casinos and various parts of Chicago’s underworld, which at the time, was infamous.

The Cast

As mentioned above, The Sting holds quite a complicated storyline. As a result, several actors were cast in this movie, and it ended up having one of the largest casts of any movie produced during its time. Of course, within this cast, were plenty of big names, including the likes of Paul Newman as Henry Gondorff, Robert Redford as Jonny Hooker, Ray Watson as J.J. Singleton and Eileen Brennan as Billie.

Movie Trivia

Every movie has an interesting bit of trivia attached to it and The Sting is certainly no different. Firstly, even though the movie is set in Chicago and involves several different locations, the entire film was shot at Universal Studios, with just a few short scenes filmed at other locations such as Chicago’s Union Station and Pasadena’s Santa Monica Pier.

Secondly, this film was met with rave reviews by almost every critic. It then went on to win a number of awards, including seven Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Writing, Best Art Direction, Best Costume Design, Best Editing and Best Original Score. However, over and above all of these accolades, several decades later, in 2005, The Sting was honoured once again. The United States’ National Film Registry selected it for preservation as it is classified as being “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant.” It was then also ranked in the 39th position on the Writers Guild of America’s list of 101 Greatest Screenplays Ever Written.

All in all, The Sting is certainly a film that will come highly recommended by several of the industry’s most respected critics. With equal parts of fun and excitement, as well as a great cast and some of the film industry’s highest honours under its belt, this movie is one that will not soon be forgotten.