A good con-game movie is as comfortable as a handmade Italian loafer. Sort of like watching a Will Smith movie during that stretch when everything he touched turned to box-office gold. Perhaps it’s not a coincidence that his hot streak ended in 2008, after he did a coast-to-coast publicity tour for “Seven Pounds” that included a stop in my newsroom. I was charmed by the guy, but even Smith couldn’t sell a movie about a taxman who commits suicide so needy people can harvest his organs.
Incredibly, “Seven Pounds” was the first movie in which he did a real love scene. But instead of following that path, he went back to space, first for the middling hit “Men in Black 3” and then for the utter disaster “After Earth.”