Molly’s Game – A Poker Themed Movie Getting Positive

Posted by Carolyn on Dec 25, 2017 Posted in High Stakes Poker News, Poker Gossip | No Comments »

Molly’s Game, which got pushed for a Christmas Day release, might just fit the description of a poker movie for the new generation of Millennial players who grew up to witness the rise of gaming, gambling, and online poker. The movie is based on the real life story of Molly Bloom, and tells the story of an Olympic-class ex-skier who ran an underground high-stakes cash game for a decade in Hollywood before she was arrested following a sting operation by the FBI. The acclaimed Aaron Sorkin wrote the script as well as directed the movie.

Mostly Positive Reviews

The early reviews for “Molly’s Game”, a poker-based movie have so far been positive. At the time of this writing, the poker movie starring Jessica Chastain has earned a decent 83 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, making it Certified Fresh. It has so far gotten 79 “Fresh” reviews and 16 “Rotten” reviews from published movie critics and online bloggers alike. Previously, it garnered a 90 percent rating with only two “Rotten” reviews and 21 “Fresh” reviews.

Furthermore, it got 3 out of 4 stars from RogerEbert.com, a 7.3/10 from the Internet Movie Database, and 77 percent from Google User ratings. It has been nearly two decades since a good poker movie was released. Rounders was the last poker themed movie to be released in 1998 and it captured the imaginations and hearts of many a poker player and want-to-be-a poker player around the world.

The positive reviews and success of Molly’s Game should be a boost for the global poker community as it will help in terms of publicity and bringing in new blood for both online poker and live poker tables.

All Star Cast Help Boost Popularity

Sorkin was responsible for hits like The Social Network, A Few Good Men, The West Wing, and Moneyball. Aside from Chastain portraying the role of Molly Bloom, the cast also features the likes of Idris Elba, Kevin Costner, Jeremy Strong, and Chris O’Dowd. The connection between Rounders and Molly’s Game doesn’t end with the theme of illicit high-stakes poker though.

The film, which was based on Bloom’s autobiography which was published in 2014, features a strange coincidence. Matt Damon who was the star in Rounders was also one of the Hollywood celebrities who used to take part in Molly’s high stake poker games. 

The film had an early screening at the Toronto International Film Festival and received mostly positive with a few mixed reviews. Critics mostly praise Chastain’s Bloom and criticize the “Sorkin overindulgence” of motor-mouthed quippy dialogue. At the very least, it’s a lot less mixed than the audience score that Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi received. 

According to Peter Debruge, the Variety chief film critic, Sorkin’s development of the Bloom character and Chastain’s portrayal of this evolution made for a dynamic and very entertaining affair. He also praised Chastain’s amazing acting talent. Meanwhile, New York Magazine/Vulture film critic David Edelstein criticized the lack of coverage of Bloom’s personal relationships, although he does offer praise for what is featured in the film. The Sorkin overindulgence criticism, meanwhile, came from RogerEbert.com and Vulture contributor Vikram Murthi.

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