Chastain really sells the loss of power her character experiences so brutally
Molly’s Game is so brilliant because of the way the film tells its story. From Jessica Chastain’s powerful narration to the explanation of poker hands, similar to that of live television, there’s a real authenticity to the drama, and it holds strong for the duration.
This is in the most part due to such a commanding performance from Chastain, and sharp direction from Aaron Sorkin on his debut. The pair blend together precisely, as they tell Molly’s story enthusiastically. Yet, what makes Chastain feel so commandeering,
is her vulnerability in the present day sections of the story compared to the sheer power she holds for the rest of the picture.
After choosing to take a year out before law school, Molly Bloom (Jessica Chastain) becomes an all-encompassing secretary at a real estate firm. Her new boss abuses her role almost 24 hours a day but also lets her run their high stakes poker night once a week. Fascinated by the game, Molly quickly becomes pivotal to the group, earning thousands in tips each night. So when her boss decides she is earning too much, Molly takes the game into her own hands and raises the stakes even higher.
This juxtaposition with her almost omniscient past hits home the idea of falling and devastation. Chastain really sells the loss of power her character experiences so brutally, and bouncing off Idris Elba during the court case, brings home these ideas in a cohesive and gut-punching way. At times, the incredibly fast pace Molly’s Game runs does lead the film down a blind alley, not showing all of the secrets the film had the potential to reveal, but this is a small gripe when compared to what the film manages to accomplish.
There is obviously an incredibly strong story behind Molly Bloom, but Sorkin and Chastain have pooled together to produce a brilliant piece of work. It’s visually pleasing, seriously thrilling and overpowering in the best way possible. It deserves huge plaudits for almost every aspect of its creation, especially in the department of pure excitement.