Details from IMDB:
Molly’s Game (2017)
The true story of Molly Bloom, an Olympic-class skier who ran the world’s most exclusive high-stakes poker game and became an FBI target.
Anyone who reads this blog knows I’m a poker fan (been taking a break from playing in bars but will go back soon). I also heard that Jessica Chastain gave a great performance (nominated for an Oscar in fact), so as I knew it would leave theaters here soon we went last weekend.
This is based on the book written by Molly Bloom and is (as much as a Hollywood movie ever does) a true story. I will give them credit that it states right away some names and details were changed to protect people, in fact integrity is one of the main themes of the film.
Chastain is excellent, not quite at the level of Frances McDormand (if you haven’t seen Three Billboards and it’s still showing near you, see that first! Hell of a movie) but none the less riveting, emotional, intelligent and one of her best performances to date. Costner and Idris Elba are also quite good in their smaller roles.
I loved all the poker references, strategies and hands. Poker (especially when money is involved) is an exciting game (well it has moments of it, the rest of the time its rather dull, you’ll have to play for yourself to see what I mean) and the movie shows it well. Poker in this case does lead to (involuntary) involvement with organized crime and (because she takes a rake, which is illegal outside a casino/gambling establishment) arrest by the FBI.
The past is often mixed together with the present as Molly tells her lawyer about her years running these poker games and we also learn how one moment of bad luck ruined her chances at being at Olympic skier. The film comes to a close as we learn the results of her hearing in court (won’t spoil it if you don’t know) and what her sentence is.
This is a really good film that I enjoyed. I did, however, find with an over 2 hour running time there were some slow spots. I think as is the case often a good 15-20 minutes could have been cut out. Some of the characters are really annoying, that doesn’t mean the acting was bad, I just felt we saw these people too much. Chastain is the main reason to see this (I hope I’m not being sexist when I say she looks amazing in this, I love readheads) and because of her excellent performance I give this 7.5 out of 10. I do recommend it to any poker/Chastain/Elba fan, not for children, due to violence, language and some sexual situations ages 17+.