Last movie of 2017! And we went out on a bit of a whimper. I trust by now you know the controversy surrounding this movie, and the casting switcheroo that director Ridley Scott did: replacing Kevin Spacey with Christopher Plummer in a pivotal role with less than a month until the previously completed film’s release. You know all that right? Cool. That’s really about the only truly remarkable thing about this movie.
This movie is the true life story of the kidnapping of J. Paul Getty III, grandson of J. Paul Getty (Plummer), the richest man in the history of the world at the time. Getty senior refuses to pay the ransom, leaving Mama Getty (Michelle Williams) in a rather unenviable position trying to get her son back with the help of Getty’s security guy I think (Mark Wahlberg).
The film played out as a slow burn, but a bit too slow for my tastes. I think we could have tightened up the 2+ hour run time into something a little more suspenseful and effective. I found it too drawn out, without enough narrative action to sustain the film. Michelle Williams, however, did give a damn good performance. She’s worth watching. Hard to believe that she came so far from Dawson’s Creek.
About that casting switch, which was ballsy and unprecendented, I think it was completely the right call. The film would’ve had an insurmountable shadow cast over it, and the change was necesary to preserve the integrity of the film and the hard work of the rest of the cast and crew. It came off pretty seamlessly. Had I not already known what had happened, I never would have guessed that a significant portion of the film was reshot in a short amount of time. Although, as I mused on Stardust, given what a despicable character Getty was potrayed as, maybe Spacey would not have been the most inapporpriate choice….Still, I applaud the decision and the execution.
All the Money in the World – \m/ \m/ \n