In the movie The Grifters, cons are serious games

 Anjelica Huston as Lilly Dillon in The Grifters 

The Grifters understands the tragedy underlying all con games - in successful cons, everyone gets hurt.

The movie stars John Cusack, Annette Bening and Anjelica Huston.

It's based on the book The Grifters, written by Jim Thompson, who is the king of the pulp crime novel. Thompson wrote bleak, pessimistic, violent and sometimes surreal books. Besides The Grifters, his books The Getaway, The Killer Inside Me and Pop. 1280 were also made into movies.

The Grifters
screenplay was written by the prolific mystery writer Donald Westlake and directed by Stephen Frears, who had success with deceptive treachery in his movie Dangerous Liaisons. It was produced by Martin Scorcese, who understands the allure of criminals (he did Goodfellas the same year.)

The Grifters
was nominated for four 1991 Academy Awards.

In this YouTube clip, Myra explains how she worked the "wire-room" long-con swindle similar to the one used in the film The Sting.

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