Molly’s Game (2017)

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Molly’s Game stars Jessica Chastain as Molly Bloom who has a fascinating and crazy true story about almost becoming an Olympic skier, running poker games, and getting arrested by the FBI. This is also the writer Aaron Sorkin’s, famously known for his writing on Steve Jobs and The Social Network, directorial debut.

A key element to anything that involves Aaron Sorkin is the snappy dialogue, and it definitely is present here. There’s a lot of rapid narration and dialogue and it’s hard to keep track of. And if you’re like me and have no idea how to play poker, this film will not help you understand it better.

The performances here are all fantastic, and I think that Chastain was definitely snubbed for the Oscars (sorry Meryl Streep, you were good in The Post, but Chastain had a better performance here.) How refreshing is it to see an intelligent woman who learned how to make millions of dollars simply off of observing some poker games she accompanied her boss to? Very, because she never broke the law, she did it all legally, and made herself into something after failing to reach her goal of being an Olympian. Idris Elba, Michael Cera, and Kevin Costner are a few other celebrities who star in the film. I really enjoyed Chastain’s relationship with Elba and her dynamic with Michael Cera, who plays something different than his usual typecast as an awkward, funny, nice guy.

Joe Keery (who is Steve from Stranger Things) has a very minor role in the film, but I couldn’t buy him as his character in the film, he was simply Steve from Stranger Things. Kevin Costner, who plays Molly’s father, also has a minor role, though you can see the influence he has had on Molly throughout the film, and he seemingly comes back into the narrative out of nowhere, where he tries to reconcile with his daughter, which I did not totally buy.

But overall, Molly’s Game has a compelling yet complicated story with good performances, definitely one of Chastain’s best. And is a film I wished more people talked about. I give it an A-

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