February 26, 2015 1:59 PM

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Glenn Ficarra and John Requa's Focus brings to mind Tony Gilroy's similarly complex but more fun Duplicity, from a couple of years ago: a tale of love among the con men, in which emotion - considered weakness in this trade - becomes a factor.

Focus works hard and does manage to generate entertainment. But the strain shows and the creative team (also responsible for writing Bad Santa and I Love You Philip Morris) can't seem to blend wit with plot complexity.

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