14A) Money Monster
14A for Coarse Language, Sexual Content, Disturbing Content
Running Time: 98 Minutes.
3 stars out of 4.
Jodie Foster steps back into the directors chair for the first time since 2011's "The Beaver" with Money Monster, a thriller taking on commerce and Wall Street. With Money Monster, Foster has assembled a top notch cast of A-list talent, with George Clooney playing Lee Gates, a TV personality who advices viewers of commerce and Wall Street, and Julia Roberts who plays his producer, of their program "Money Monster." Jack O'Connell who last appeared in 2014's "Unbroken" plays Kyle Budwell, a viewer of "Money Monster" who seeks to get revenge on Gates, after he went bankrupt following a previous tip from Gates. Money Monster is a slow burn, and while the film as a whole has alot to say about Wall Street, the media, and consumption, the film never really puts all of these great ideas together, and in the end, viewers are left with a somewhat unsatisfying film. The screenplay is all over the place, and there is a lack of a sense of place. It is very confusing where and when certain characters story are taking place, and why they were necessary to include in the film. I would have preferred for the film to take place entirely in the TV studio (as it does for the first hour), instead of moving onto the streets of New York. This would have made the film feel much more intimate, which would have worked for the telling of a story where claustrophobia plays such a n integral part to the mood and atmosphere. The ensemble cast all do solid work, but Jack O'Connell is the standout for me. As Kyle Budwell, he creates a believable three-dimensional character, and masters the New York accent. O'Connell is both intimidating and menacing as the films "antagonist," but we come to care for his character as we learn more about his drive and motivations. Clooney and Roberts do fine work in their roles, but the roles were not well established, and there is not much more to describe there characters or performances other than they were somewhat convincing in the role of "Host," and "Producer." With Money Monster, Foster has crafted an important film about crime, corruption, and commerce, and I was with the film for a very long time, until it lost me, this was when, the films got lost with what it's really about. Regardless, Money Monster has some great ideas, and some really great moments, and is a film that I feel is worth your time.