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  • Don Ford

Don Reviews "Molly's Game"

Texas Hold ‘Em is one of the most popular versions of poker, even making mainstream media coverage like ESPN. The top players may make it look easy, especially with the way the television coverage shows what each player is holding. But in a real tournament, watch out: those who think they are “experts” because they watch it on TV or play it online for fun are more than likely to get a real awakening.

“Molly’s Game” is the new film that was adapted for the screen and directed by Aaron Sorkin in his directorial debut. The film stars Jessica Chastain (The Martian, The Help), Idris Elba (Prometheus, Thor), Kevin Costner (The Untouchables, Dances with Wolves), Michael Cera (Juno, Superbad), Jeremy Strong (The Judge, Zero Dark Thirty), and Bill Camp (Loving, Gold). Inspired by true events, it is the story of Molly Brown (Chastain), an injured professional skier whose life is going nowhere until she gets hired as an assistant to a Hollywood wanna-be mogul named Dean Keith (Strong). After working for Dean for a while, he puts Molly in charge of starting a weekly underground poker game in Los Angeles that only high profile people are invited to. With that experience, Molly makes as career of running her own successful high end game, and as expected, things go south as she gets indicted by the Federal government. She hires attorney Charles Jaffey (Elba) to represent her, and from there the story of the ongoing case ensues.

I really like the way Sorkin uses his scenery and the sets to really set a proper mood that complements this story. When it comes to the acting, Chastain does well as the lead. I do not see any award nominations for her, but she does as well as she does consistently. My shout-outs in this film, however, goes to Cera, who does well in his role as a top star who is regular in the game who likes to get every advantage he can without outright cheating, as well as Elba, who does a great job as the attorney, which could possibly net him at least one Best Supporting Actor nod.

“Molly’s Game” runs about two hours and twenty minutes, but the way it is presented I stayed still interested. With the narration through the film by Chastain explaining what happened and why things turned out the way they did, it helped me understand the plot much better with even good little twist at the end which pleasantly surprised me. This film is rated “R,” but so keep that in mind when it comes to whom you go to this with, so I will recommend it as a matinee showing in the theaters.

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