“The Good Liar” (Warner Bros.)

Helen Mirren and Ian McKellen star in a scene from the movie "The Good Liar." The Catholic News Service classification is A-III -- adults.(CNS/Warner Bros.)

By Catholic News Service

Elegant but ultimately dark suspense yarn in which a ruthless con man (Ian McKellen) sets his sights on the fortune of a vulnerable, naive widow (Helen Mirren), skillfully ingratiating himself with her after initially making contact through a dating website. Despite the objections of her worried grandson (Russell Tovey), she gradually falls into his trap. But savvy viewers will sense from the start that things are more complicated than they initially appear.

Director Bill Condon’s sophisticated adaptation of Nicholas Searle’s novel, which also features Jim Carter as the trickster’s partner, offers intelligent entertainment powered by excellent performances.

Some stylized but harsh violence, including torture and a discreetly portrayed sexual assault, brief upper and rear nudity, an incidental gay relationship, a same-sex kiss, occasional rough and crude language, references to sexual activity. The Catholic News Service classification is A-III — adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R — restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.

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