Some actors are happy to stay on their side of the lens and some, like Jodie Foster, occasionally like to swap positions and try their hands at directing. She’s done a pretty decent job of it here. Money Monster tells the story of Lee Gates (George Clooney) a cheesy corporate TV presenter who finds himself in jeopardy when ordinary Joe, Kyle Budwell (Jack O’ Connell) loses pretty much everything he owns on one of Lee’s ‘surefire’ investment tips and invades the studio with a gun and a belt stuffed with Semtex, intent on finding answers to some rather difficult questions. It’s left to Lee’s seasoned producer, Patty Fenn (Julia Roberts) to talk her team through the resulting ordeal and to try to ensure that nobody gets killed in the process. In an attempt to preserve his own skin, Lee starts asking timely questions about how an investment company called Ibis, could possibly have lost its investors $800,000,000 in one day. The answers all seem to lead towards the company’s head honcho, Walt Camby (Dominic West) and some dodgy dealings in South Africa…
Money Monster is a taut little thriller that asks some pertinent questions about the world of share dealing, though perhaps it never delves quite as deeply into the subject as it might have. Still, it cooks up a fine head of steam as a straight ahead thriller and there’s plenty of good performances here – this might be Roberts’ best showing in quite a while. Rising star, O ‘Connell acquits himself well and gorgeous George handles his role with consummate ease. It’s not in the league of say, Dog Day Afternoon, but then, few films are and this makes for a decent hour and a half of entertainment.
The earth won’t move but if you’re looking to distract yourself, this is a decent investment.