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Money Monster – Review


Release Date: 27 May 2016
Director: Jodie Foster
Writer: Jamie Linden - Alan DiFiore
Cast: George Clooney - Julia Roberts - Jack O'Connell



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1 total rating


Posted June 8, 2016 by

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Money Monster Review:

Lee Gates is the host of the financial advice TV show, Money Monster, which only a week ago gave some advice to investors that backfired spectacularly. One investor is particularly irked. Kyle Budwell, recently bankrupted, hijacks the show whilst streaming live and forces Gates to don a suicide vest. Kyle meanwhile has his finger on a dead man’s switch. More than his money back, Kyle wants answers.

Money Monster wastes no time at all. We see that IBIS, the unlucky company of note, has cost investors $800 million. The disgustingly smarmy Lee Gates lives and hosts on like it ain’t no thing. Clooney is a natural for these kinds of parts. Gates has got charm to burn but without direction, he’s useless. Julia Roberts is Patty Fenn, the hard-working, work-loving director running the show with military precision and makes ample time for undermining wise cracks aimed Gates’ way.

The frenetic activity of the show starting up is displayed brilliantly; scripts being revised, cameras being placed, Gates and Patty having several conversations simultaneously.

The show itself is a terrific parody of the most nauseating American cable. The show’s opening dance on camera, minus the music, is quite embarrassing.

Then Kyle Budwell crashes the party. Jack O’Connell’s performance grabs your attention immediately. He’s unsettled, enraged, terrified, pathetic, sympathetic. The accent isn’t on point all the time but does nothing to weaken the character.

Once the show is hijacked, the feeling of organised chaos is replaced with a situation and coverage much more focused and intense. Despite Kyle’s threats and demands, Patty holds on to a great deal of control over the show. It’s especially humorous and insightful when she requests that the cameraman and sound guy ensure Kyle, their hostage taker, is within frame and wearing a mic.

Despite Clooney’s character Gates being depicted from the start as an insufferable, spoilt prima donna, he is later painted as the audience’s avatar. When evidence of corruption within IBIS is hinted at, Gates quickly drops his charlatanism (perhaps a little too quickly) and wants answers as much as the disgruntled Kyle does.

The final act of Money Monster is where the weak point lies. You become rooted to the TV studio and when the action leaves it and moves onto the New York streets, some of the intensity is lost. Kyle walks his “bomb” down to Wall Street whilst under a huge NYPD escort. The streets are unbelievably packed with idiotic rubberneckers.

Despite this and a less engaging sub-plot involving the cream of IBIS turning on each other, Money Monster is entertaining from open to finish. The tension, drama and touches of comedy are all handled adeptly while Clooney, Roberts and O’Connell bring out the character in dividends.


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Written by:


Michael Keyes
Silences Band
Full Contributor

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