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Ridley Scott has brought us many great films in the past decades. The first one that really grabbed my attention was the Gladiator in the beginning of the millennium, followed by Hannibal, which pulled out the best performance of Anthony Hopkins to date.
For many, the introduction to Scott’s films was Alien in 1979. However, Scott’s [highlight color=#FFFF00 ]attempt to introduce[/highlight]the sharp-teethed space monster to Generation Z last year was more abysmal than boring.
Scott is back on top of his game with All the Money in the World. In the thriller, the grandson of the world’s richest man is kidnapped by terrorists in hope of ransom.
The filthy rich Jean Paul Getty is played by Christopher Plummer, an 88-year-old veteran with 212 movies in his résumé. Plummer took over the role Kevin Spacey, who’s 20 years younger, during the final stages of filming, following the boycotting trend in Hollywood after the harrasment allegations surfaced. The scenes with Spacey had to be reshot, an estimated cost of 10 million US dollars but money well spent.
It turns out that Plummer is perfect for the role. The Getty he portrays is cold and calculated, manipulative and reclusive — a man who loathes the hoi polloi and is mainly interested in himself and his art collection. Plummer, however, is only the almond in mulled wine; the rest of the cast are the spices that keep the film tasty to the very end.
Mark Wahlberg, who plays Fletcher Chace, Getty’s advisor and fixer, delivers one of his greatest naturalistic roles. From scene to scene, he appears in control of his performance. His dialogue is smooth, the tongue is quick as his hands, should he ever have to tie them into fists. Refreshingly, it’s one of the few films where Wahlberg doesn’t have to throw a punch.
The actress in lead role is Michelle Williams, who personified Marilyn Monroe in My Week with Marilyn in 2011. Under Scott’s command, she turns into the caring mother, Gail Harris, who wants to get her son home, safe and alive without saving in costs, should she have the money. Charlie Plummer (no relation to Christopher) is the kidnapped son, John Paul Getty III.
All the Money in the World is an interesting, historical thriller, based on John Pearson’s biography Painfully Rich. The viewer walks out the cinema entertained and wiser. Getty is, after all, synonymous with wealth, oil and images.
‘All the Money in the World’ premieres in cinemas January 12.