All the Money in the World (2017)
When I think of All the Money in the World, it is hard not to think about everything that happened with Kevin Spacey and the bad publicity that surrounded this film because of him. It is my understanding that the movie was just about completed when the news came out about his sexual allegations.
(This is my review of All the Money in the World, but I feel that it is important to talk first about the cloud of negativity that hovered over this movie before its release. There is a certain amount of hypocrisy that has been a part of the Hollywood machine for many years. It still is today).
I think that the producers of the movie agreed that All the Money in the World was guaranteed to bomb at the box office because of Spacey. So how did they resolve this problem? The same way that Netflix resolved their Spacey problem with the infamous House of Cards firing, they cut him out of the film completely. They brought Christopher Plummer in to replace him. Then they had to reshoot all of Spacey’s scenes with Plummer instead. How that will pan out with the Netflix Original Series House of Cards is yet to be seen, but that is a topic for a different day.
Spacey was originally billed second. His character was a big deal to the film. They had to bring in the other actors and redo a good chunk of the whole movie so that they could replace him. This all had to be done with only weeks remaining until the film was due to be released!
I read that it took about 9 days to completely reshoot the necessary scenes to cut Kevin Spacey completely out of All the Money in the World. That is insane if you think about it. Ridley Scott did what they thought would be impossible to try to salvage the film.
Now, if that was not enough, more controversy instantly surfaced about the reshoots. Apparently, Walhberg negotiated that he would get paid somewhere in the millions of dollars if he had to film any extra scenes. He has a good agent and he is one of the highest paid actors out there, so this comes as no surprise right? Wrong. To stir things up more, now all of a sudden, people were complaining because he got paid far more than Michelle Williams or any of the other actors for his reshoots. They were paid thousands and he was paid millions. The complaint was that there should be closer to equal pay for all involved.
I am all for women’s rights. I am glad that they were able to erase Spacey from this film because of his sexual misconduct. They should have cracked down on all of that years ago. We all know, and they all know that people in power in Hollywood have been taking advantage of that power for far too long and nothing has really been done about it until recently.
However, I believe in the free market. People should be able to negotiate their worth. They get paid for what they contribute. The superstars get paid more because they bring more to the table. That is how it always has been and how it always should be. If you want to look at equal pay between men and women in Hollywood, I think you need to look deeper into the fact that Hollywood treats women like objects. Hollywood writers do not write many quality roles for women. Instead women are seen as window dressing and men are made out to be the heroes. That is not a problem with the actors or actresses. That is a problem with the filmmakers, and ultimately the big production companies that have gotten big for a reason, because they know how to make money.
What does Mark Wahlberg do when he hears that many people believe that he got overpaid and he is looked at as being part of the problem? Marky Mark turns around and donates all of the extra millions of dollars that he made for reshoots to “Time’s Up” in Michelle Williams name.
All of the Money in the World is based on true events. It is about a teenage boy who is kidnapped and held for ransom because his grandfather is the richest man in the world. The grandfather will not pay the ransom, and the boy’s mother is forced to do whatever is in her power to try to get her son back.
The movie was directed by Ridley Scott and the noteworthy cast includes Michelle Williams, Christopher Plummer, Mark Wahlberg, Timothy Hutton, Charlie Plummer, Romain Duris, Charlie Shotwell, Andrew Buchan, and Marco Leonardi.
Ridley Scott generally knows how to get a film done right. He has got the process down. Sometimes the expectation is higher than the outcome, however. This is the case with this movie. It is well made to a point. It jumps around a lot. Usually that is OK to tell a story, but it makes this film feel a little choppy. It also seems to take away from how we feel about the characters in the story. We are not given much of a chance to really like and care about the people in the movie. If we do not care much about the characters, then we do not care much about what happens to them.
I think that this disconnect exists in the movie because it is in fact, based on true events. They follow the story line of what happened in real life, but they do not give you much reason to like the characters. This strongly takes away from how good the movie could be. It is good up to a point, without the possibility of being better.
Christopher Plummer got nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for this movie. He was part of the film for 9 days of reshoots. With all of the chaos that surrounded All the Money in the World, it seems like Hollywood was just throwing the movie a bone when they nominated Plummer for an Oscar. He is a solid actor and he was good in this film, but not Oscar good. Not even close. I think that this is a case of Hollywood trying to recoup their investment and show praise for Ridley Scott’s ability to get the job done that needed to get done. If there is an Oscar nomination of any kind for a movie, it pretty much guarantees that people will see it. It is sort of like the media. They tell you what they want you to hear. In this case, they tell you what they want you to watch.
I cannot help but wonder, what the other version of the film with Spacey was like. With my tainted view of him as an actor at this point, I would have hated the movie. It was definitely the right thing to do replacing him. I used to be big fan of Spacey, but it is amazing how quickly your view of someone changes once their true colors bleed through.
Overall, the movie was good, but not that good. It is an interesting true story that was certainly worth telling. It felt rushed, because it actually was rushed. I feel that with more thought placed on character development, the movie could have been a lot better.
I rate this movie a 6.5 on a scale of 1-10.
If you liked this film then you might also enjoy:
John Q. (2002)
Proof of Life (2000)
Inside Man (2006)
The Negotiator (1998)
The Counselor (2013)
Ridley Scott is a man who knows how to direct a film. I have seen almost all of the movies that he has directed, and I have never been disappointed in his work. Sure, there have been a few movies of his that I did not enjoy as much as the others, but he has always done an outstanding job as a director. I could list off his resume to prove my point, but his work speaks for itself. His movies are always of the highest quality that they can be. If you have seen his movies, then you know what I’m talking about.
Knowing what I know about Ridley Scott’s films, I knew that I would have to see his latest movie, The Counselor. Like most of Scott’s other films, The Counselor has a stellar cast. What do you usually get when you cross a highly gifted director with a bunch of talented actors? The answer is a powerful movie.
The Counselor is about a lawyer (Michael Fassbender) who turns his life upside down when he becomes involved in drug trafficking.
The film was written by Cormac McCarthy and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz, Cameron Diaz, Brad Pitt, Bruno Ganz, Rosie Perez, Sam Spruell, Velibor Topic, Dean Norris, and John Leguizamo.
I did not know quite what to expect before watching this movie. I knew it was not going to be a happy-go-lucky film because it is about drug trafficking and living on the edge, but it had to be entertaining.
Surprisingly, the film was a little slow, at times. It was also a little hard to follow until things became clearer in the middle of the movie. I think this was because the film started in the middle of a story, rather than telling the story from the beginning. Little by little, you figure out exactly what is going on, but it takes its time getting there while it jumps around. With all of that being said, it took me some time to get into the story.
The scenery in the movie was flashy and beautiful. There was a lot of money floating around in the film and this was made very obvious with all of the expensive sports cars and elegant mansions. It was a great depiction of an extravagant lifestyle gone awry because of a few very bad decisions. In fact, that seemed to be the overall theme of the movie. Bad choices will come back to haunt you. If you live on the edge for too long, eventually you are bound to fall off.
The Counselor had a lot of great and unique characters. They were made great by the exceptional actors portraying them. They were made unique by how they were portrayed. Each of the five main characters looked like they came out of a dark comic book or video game about how drug trafficking can be dangerous. Whether it was the hair, the make-up, or the clothing, they were certainly a bunch of characters.
The movie was in-your-face. It was oozing with sexuality, violence, harsh language, and disturbing images. All of this was done with originality. There were times when the movie was hard to like, but because of how well-made it was, overall, the film was hard not to like. I credit Ridley Scott for taking a hard to enjoy tale and making it likable. The actors were the icing on Scott’s cake, but he chose the flavor and the taste.
I rate this movie a 7.5 on a scale of 1-10.
Buy, rent, or run? Rent.
The Counselor (2013) (Click on the title for my full review.)
A lawyer gets himself into a lot of trouble after he starts drug trafficking.
This film has an outstanding director: Ridley Scott and an amazing cast: Brad Pitt, Michael Fassbender, Javier Bardem, Cameron Diaz, Penelope Cruz, Dean Norris, John Leguizamo, Goran Visnjic, Bruno Ganz, and Natalie Dormer.
The Counselor has my attention.
The film is set to release on 10/25/13.
Welcome to the Punch (2013)
Strong plays a wanted criminal and McAvoy is the man trying to take him down.
The film looks like it will be filled with some entertaining action, but may be lacking something. Has this story been told too many times? If Ridley Scott had also directed the film then maybe it would look more intriguing.
It is set to release on 3/27/13.