Fremantle Gazette - - COURSES AND CLASSES -

BRACE your­selves - Jes­sica Chas­tain and Aaron Sorkin have made a film to­gether.

What hap­pens when two peo­ple at the top of their fields come to­gether to tell a hard-to­believe story that is ac­tu­ally (mostly) true? You get Molly’s Game.

When her Olympic dreams are dashed due to a chance ac­ci­dent, sharp-as-a-tack skier Molly Bloom (Jes­sica Chas­tain) heads to LA for a new life.

She gets a job as an as­sis­tant to a de­mand­ing jerk who runs poker games for celebri­ties and rich busi­ness­men and quickly picks up on the ins and outs of un­der­ground gam­bling, learn­ing the game, mak­ing con­tacts and even­tu­ally run­ning her own games.

Her busi­ness booms and she re­sorts to drugs to con­trol when she sleeps and stays awake, but un­be­knownst to her at the time, Rus­sian mob­sters be­come her clien­tele and she be­comes the tar­get of the FBI.

En­ter the only lawyer that will take her case at the last minute - Char­lie Jaf­fey (Idris Elba).

De­spite clock­ing in at two hours and 20 min­utes, Molly’s Game zips by at such an ac­cel­er­ated speed that it feels like Win­ning hand: Jes­sica Chas­tain as Molly Bloom. FEA­TURE FLICK

MOLLY’S GAME (MA) ★★★½ Di­rected by: Aaron Sorkin Star­ring: Jes­sica Chas­tain, Idris Elba, Kevin Cost­ner Screen­ing: In cin­e­mas now Re­viewed by: Ju­lian Wright

only 45 min­utes.

Di­a­logue in Aaron Sorkin’s script is rat­tled off like bul­lets out of a ma­chine gun - his sig­na­ture style - but this is a com­pre­hen­sive de­pic­tion of an out­landish story.

There are so many de­li­cious

lay­ers and flavours to his script that this is im­mensely en­ter­tain­ing. Even those who don’t know the first thing about poker will be able to fol­low.

Not only is the story in­cred­i­bly well told, but Molly is such a strong, en­gag­ing fe­male char­ac­ter as she nav­i­gates this man’s world from the bot­tom rung of the lad­der to the very top.

One fal­ter lies in the tail end - a scene be­tween Molly and her psy­chol­o­gist dad (Kevin Cost­ner) in which her mo­ti­va­tions are spelled out for us, just in case we didn’t piece it to­gether in the pre­vi­ous 120 min­utes.

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