All The Money In The World - a dispiriting affair
I fell asleep.
Oh dear, what a mess Ridley. From the miscasting of Mark Wahlberg to the re-shooting with Christopher Plummer, this film is just all over the place and not what we have come to expect from Ridley Scott.
Based on true events, the film opens in Rome, 1973. Masked men kidnap a teenage boy named John Paul Getty III (Charlie Plummer). His grandfather, J. Paul Getty (Christopher Plummer), is the richest man in the world, a billionaire oil magnate, but he's notoriously miserly. His favorite grandson's abduction is not reason enough for him to part with any of his fortune. The film focuses on Gail, (Michelle Williams), Paul's devoted, strong-willed mother, who unlike Getty, has consistently chosen her children over his fortune. Her son's life in the balance with time running out, she attempts to sway Getty even as her son's mob captors become increasingly more determined, volatile and brutal. When Getty sends his enigmatic security man Fletcher Chace (Mark Wahlberg) to look after his interests, he and Gail become unlikely allies in this race against time to save her son.
Michelle Williams is the best thing about this film. Her determination, her love for her son and her dislike of JP Getty and his money drive her through this story. It's a tour de force from her and her scenes with Wahlberg only serve to show the limitations of his casting. Christopher Plummer does an admirable job inhabiting the dislikeable shoes of JP Getty. Hats off to him for stepping into the re-shooting when the Kevin Spacey news broke. I wonder did something get lost in the reshoots? Was it all a bit rushed?
Plummer chews away at the scenery as one would expect but it is Williams' performance that is the standout in this disappointing effort.
And Mark Wahlberg? There must be another Transformers film due along some time soon.