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Catch Me If You Can Essay

1230 words - 5 pages

Frank Abagnale was an intelligent man. One of the most successful con men in history, Frank lived as a pilot, doctor, lawyer and an FBI agent all before his 21st birthday. His primary technique was defrauding banks using different fake check schemes eventually amounting to over 2.5 million dollars. Along with a friend, Frank wrote his story which was later turned into an autobiographical film starring Leonardo DiCaprio and directed by Steven Speilberg. Much of what Frank accomplished in the film defied believability.

Throughout the film Frank is creating different identities to try and make some money, but even though his name is changed his personality seems to remain the same. ...view middle of the document...

Frank continues to scam his way throughout the country, becoming a doctor and a defense attorney. Even almost becoming a married man with one of his love interests but was caught and had to escape.

Throughout the story Frank still has contact with his father and assures him he’s doing fine and creating a wonderful life for himself. Frank Sr. believes his son’s lies until Detective Hanratty visits him one day asking the whereabouts of Frank Jr. Frank Sr. lies to the detective and claims to know nothing of Frank’s current location, protecting his son despite being hurt by the truth. At one point Frank Jr. comes back home to his father to convince him yet again that the family can be put back together. Frank Sr. tells his son that this can never happen as well as his son “stopping all this nonsense”. Frank Jr. begs his father to tell him to stop but the only words his father has are “you can’t”. Frank is eventually tracked down in France and extradited to the U.S. under the assumption he will work for the FBI under Hanratty’s supervision. Frank agrees and becomes one of the leading investigators for the FBI fraud division using his extensive knowledge to decipher new ways to stop criminals just like him.

All of the personas Frank portrayed in the movie were in fact true. Some were given up for different reasons, not just for the fact that he was being chased by the FBI. His longest impersonation (11 months) was that of a doctor in Georgia who was created solely to impress a landlord who he thought would check his credibility as a Pan Am pilot. He did very little work as the supervising doctor but was almost exposed during one incident with a suffocating baby and once there was a replacement he realized he was putting people’s lives at risk and left. Frank claims that his passing of the bar exam was a genuine passing and that he didn’t cheat or use any other means to get the license. The conditions in the French prison were represented quite accurately with poor care for Frank; no toilet, bed, and rarely any food or water. His parents’ divorce was also true but had little effect on Frank’s life compared to how it is depicted in the movie. This was added by Speilberg, who also went through a parental divorce at a young age, to give Frank something to work towards, his father’s acceptance.

The falsified details in the film begin with Frank’s family and his relationship with them. His parents did divorce when he was 16 but he was one of four children and was given to his father while his siblings...

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