All the Money in the World movie review: The Ridley Scott movie features solid acts

Ridley Scott is a little distant in the way he observes his characters and their dilemmas. The young boy is in mortal danger all through, but your heart is not as much in your mouth as it should be.

Rating: 2.5 out of 5
Written by Shubhra Gupta | New Delhi | Updated: January 5, 2018 7:00 pm
all the money in the world All the Money in the World movie review: Ridley Scott’s movie is handsomely mounted.

All the Money in the World movie cast: Christopher Plummer, Charlie Plummer, Michelle Williams, Mark Wahlberg
All the Money in the World movie director: Ridley Scott
All the Money in the World movie rating: 2.5 stars

How much is too little? If you have all the money in the world, that question shouldn’t even be asked, especially if a precious life is at stake. It’s 1973 and super tycoon J Paul Getty has so much that he’s forgotten the amount: if you have to count it, you’re not a billionaire, he tells an admiring reporter from a magazine. But when his 16-year-old grandson John Paul Getty III is kidnapped in Rome, and the boy’s mother looks to him to pay the ransom, he refuses.

Based on a novel which recounted the incident and its complex, painful fallout, Ridley Scott’s movie is handsomely mounted with a couple of solid acts, especially the rich old man played by Christopher Plummer. (Kevin Spacey, who was meant to play Getty, was replaced double-quick after accusations of sexual harassment surfaced).

The kidnapping itself is a much too stretched out middle part, in which young Getty (Charlie Plummer, no relation to Christopher) changes hands, from one set of criminals to the other. Some of the tension leaches out as you wait for the film to settle down again: Michelle Williams, as the despairing mother, dealing with a difficult divorce (her husband is a weak-kneed alcoholic, and we barely register his presence) and squaring up to her father-in-law who is happy to stump up millions for an old painting, but nothing for his own blood, comes up with a measured act. Wahlberg is Getty Sr’s man, meant to negotiate with the bad guys, gets a lot of screen time, but not too many moments when he lifts off it.

And that’s because Scott is a little distant in the way he observes his characters and their dilemmas. The young boy is in mortal danger all through. There are severed limbs and flying bullets, but your heart is not as much in your mouth as it should be.

Still, the film nails the time and place. And as the victim, Charlie Plummer who doesn’t have much to do other than look increasingly bedraggled as he is shifted from one prison to another, leaves an impression.

You can have all the money in the world, and yet you can be alone, staring at your mortality: finally, this is what we come away with. The message could have been delivered with a little more subtlety, but it’s right, and rightfully, there.

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  1. Nitish Katti
    Jan 10, 2018 at 6:37 pm
    This is such a bad review I have ever read. Good, this was not the first review I read, else I would have developed a wrong notion of the movie cos the review tries to undermine the movies' storyline - which everyone knows, from the first paragraph itself. I have not seen the movie, but I have watched the trailer, and I did like it very much. Also, everyone knows from the trailer that J Paul Getty is not ready to pay the ransom despite being rich. But Shubhra Gupta mocks this story itself in the first paragraph. That's nonsense. Don't know about the movie but definitely disappointed by this review. Shubhra Gupta must have done her homework here.
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    1. Nitish Katti
      Jan 10, 2018 at 6:26 pm
      This is such an ic review I have ever read. Good, this was not the first review I read, else I would have developed a wrong notion of the movie cos the review tries to undermine the movies' storyline - which everyone knows, from the first paragraph itself. I have not seen the movie, but I have watched the trailer, and I did like it very much. Also, everyone knows from the trailer that J Paul Getty is not ready to pay the ransom despite being rich. But Shubhra Gupta mocks this story itself in the first paragraph. That's nonsense. Don't know about the movie but definitely disappointed by this review. ShubhraGupta must have done her homework here.
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      Reply
      1. Nitish Katti
        Jan 10, 2018 at 6:25 pm
        This is such an ic review I have ever read. Good, this was not the first review I read, else I would have developed a wrong notion of the movie cos the review tries to undermine the movies' storyline - which everyone knows, from the first paragraph itself. I have not seen the movie, but I have watched the trailer, and I did like it very much. Also, everyone knows from the trailer that J Paul Getty is not ready to pay the ransom despite being rich. But Shubhra Gupta mocks this story itself in the first paragraph. That's nonsense. Don't know about the movie but definitely disappointed by this review. Shubhra Gupta must have done her homework here.
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        Reply
        1. Nilesh Jain
          Jan 5, 2018 at 7:08 pm
          Solid acts ? or solid pranks ? My life is not solid, it is going with time.
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