We all know Aaron Sorkin can write. The one-man zeitgeist behind The West Wing blends skill, smartness and, particularly, showiness in a way that leaves no question about his talent. But can he direct? Having now watched his directorial debut twice, I am still not entirely sure that he can.
Most certainly he can put together a slickly entertaining story: Molly’s Game, based on the autobiography of disgraced “poker princess” Molly Bloom, rattles along nicely. In the central role, Jessica Chastain is phenomenal.
Formerly a freestyle skier who hoped to compete at the Olympics, Bloom is driven to succeed. She realises that to make it in the world of spoilt
super-rich boys, she needs to brand herself as the ultimate unattainable nattainable luxury item.
Sorkin’s main skill is in keeping all the juggled uggled story elements aloft. We see Molly’s life through ugh flashbacks (Kevin n Costner makes an n impression as her r overbearing father). Exposition is deftly delivered vered through Molly’s meetings with her attorney Charlie rlie Jaffey (Idris Elba). Elba is as good as s I have ever seen him. Jaffey and Bloom’s m’s sparking scenes together are deliciously ciously bracing. The thrill of watching g two actors at the top of their game e is Sorkin’s winning card.