The first of the 52 films is: Molly’s Game.

We saw this on 13th January and it’s one that I’d been anticipating since I saw the trailer.

As a woman, the trailer resonated strongly with me: a strong, independent woman writes a book about her multi-million dollar business, which is then turned into a film where very little is spared.

I’m also a person who diligently checks the run time of a film before taking my seat, so when I saw that Molly’s Game was 2 hours and 20 minutes long, I was hoping that it would be worth me fighting my fidgets.

It was.

Molly’s Game is a fast moving film, making the full 140 minutes fly. Jessica Chastain plays Molly Bloom, an Olympic-class skier who went on to run a high-stakes poker game for 10 years. That was, of course, before she was arrested at 5 o’clock in the morning by 17 FBI agents. The film focuses on Molly and her lawyer, Charlie Jaffey, who is played by Idris Elba.

The dialogue was complementarily quick, and entire film left me feeling immensely involved in the situation we found Molly in. The interaction between Molly and Jaffey is engaging; both are strong characters who don’t like losing. In one scene, when Jaffey is negotiating with the district attorney for a new deal, the tension is palpable.

Throughout the film, I often felt as if Chastain and Elba were the characters they were portraying, except for their different names. I can’t fault their acting or their on-screen dynamic.

I can, however, fault a few things, remembering the book is based on a film written by Bloom herself.
These things are:

  • Continuity errors – it was very small, but it sticks with me. Chances are, no one else noticed. The handwriting on the whiteboard suddenly changed. This is the nerdiest continuity error ever to be spotted, I know.
  • The interaction between Molly and her father on a park bench- he is a psychologist and he engages her in ‘three years of therapy in three minutes’ and this scene was, to me, oversimplified, and also unnecessary. Very much ‘she has daddy issues which have caused all her to make poor decisions’. In fact, this entire scene was too cliché for me.
  • The complete glossing over of the fact that Molly was both a drug addict and rigging games.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the film. I really can’t get over the pacing and the dialogue, the dynamics and everything else. I don’t believe in ratings, as for me, they’re arbitrary.

My verdict: go and see it.

Specky Scribbler & Guy with Red Beard

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