This is a film which has been kept pretty tightly under wraps, but at CinemaCon we got the chance to see a teaser trailer and hear both director, Aaron Sorkin, and star, Jessica Chastain, talk briefly about the film. This much-anticipated movie has been written and directed by Aaron Sorkin, undisputedly the hottest screenwriter in Hollywood. He is a massive talent, and someone who doesn’t just write electrifying dialogue, but who also delivers the kind of social commentary that defines the way we think about ourselves.
The film is based on Molly Bloom’s memoir, the expansively titled ‘Molly’s Game: From Hollywood’s Elite to Wall Street’s Billionaire Boys’ Club, My High-Stakes Adventure in the World of Underground Poker’. It tells the story of how an Olympic class skier found herself running high stakes poker games for the Hollywood elite, big business high rollers and even the Russian mob; an activity which led to her midnight arrest by seventeen heavily armed FBI agents.
Not that the movie is going to be naming any of those involved. Sorkin is on record as saying: ‘I have gone to great lengths to obscure the identities of those people…I don’t want the movie to be about gossip’. Asked why he’d agreed to direct the movie, Sorkin said: ‘It isn’t often you come across a story that is both cool and has a lot of heart and this one does’.
Jessica Chastain’s comments revealed another side to the movie: ‘The film explores female power and what that means in society. Molly’s journey goes through that and Aaron really shows the hurdles she had, but also how powerful a person she is’.
This will be Sorkin’s directorial debut and when asked about how comfortable he felt in this new role he said: ‘I’ve spent hundreds of hours standing next to some of the most talented directors of all time. Hopefully a little bit of it rubbed off on me. I had no problems stealing from them.’ Exactly what we can expect still remains a mystery. The trailer doesn’t give us a lot of the famous Sorkin dialogue but does suggest that the film will have a narrative which jumps back and forth in time, like The Social Network.
There are those who suggesting that Molly’s Game could be a contender for the best gambling film of all time, although it would be up against some pretty stiff competition. Remember a young Steve McQueen losing out in that final game of five card stud to Edward G Robinson in the Cincinnati Kid from 1965? Or Matt Damon and Edward Norton, seriously out of their depth in the Texas Hold’em cult classic, Rounders, from 1998? Or Ocean’s Eleven? The rat pack original or the Clooney, Pitt remake. We’re going to have to wait a little while longer to find out because Molly’s Game has yet to be given a US release date