May 27, 2024

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Geek Review: Molly’s Game

Jessica Chastain is Molly Bloom in this based-on-a-true-story adaptation from writer/director Aaron Sorkin.

Aaron Sorkin has been known as a writer for a while now, but the guy decided to try his hand at directing one of his own scripts with the new movie Molly’s Game.

Of course, Watson already reviewed this one too.

Jessica Chastain plays Molly Bloom, a one-time aspiring skier whose life took a few turns that she didn’t see coming and ended with her somehow running high stakes poker games.  Those games, two years after they ended, got her arrested for dealing with the Russian mob, a fact she may or may not have known.  With all money forfeited and her refusing to name names for a wide variety of reasons, she manages to get a high-priced laywer (Idris Elba) to represent her as she really doesn’t know anything about the Russian mob.  Or she might.  We only get her side of things.  She just met a few members that she may or may not have been aware were members.

Much of the movie chronicles Molly’s rise and eventual fall, like many good biopics do.  The action and the dialogue move in a very Sorkin-ish manner, and even though I had no clue what 95% of those poker terms they tossed around so causally meant, I at least got the impression that they did.  True, a third act scene with Kevin Costner as Molly’s dad felt a wee bit dramatically convenient, but I still found the movie fairly gripping.  Sorkin can direct well with at least his own scripts, Chastain and Elba both deliver the lines well, and Chastain makes a very credible and charismatic lead.  Even if Molly is faking out the audience somehow, she still makes for a compelling central figure, and Chastain can handle the dialogue well.

What else did I learn here?  Be careful of Michael Cera.

Nine out of ten questionable American accents from Chris O’Dowd.