Bradley Cooper and Cate Blanchett devise a scheme to scam wealthy customers into paying for his psychic act.
Guillermo del Toro is best known for his supernatural films and creature features so he breaks into new territory with Nightmare Alley, which is neither of those things.
This neo-noir psychological thriller follows Stanton ‘Stan’ Carlisle (Bradley Cooper), a shady and suspicious man who joins Clem (Willem Dafoe)’s carnival. During his time at the travelling carnival, Stan learns how to pretend to be a psychic from Zeena (Toni Collette) and he takes those skills with him when he runs off to New York with Molly (Rooney Mara).
In the Big Apple, Stan wows the wealthy elite with his clairvoyant act, with the exception of psychoanalyst Lilith Ritter (Cate Blanchett) who tries to test his ‘powers’. She subsequently devises a scheme with Stan in which they scam wealthy customers willing to pay for private psychic readings.
This film, the second movie adaptation of William Lindsay Gresham’s novel after the 1947 version, is really...