Review: Molly's Game is no royal flush, but makes a fine full house

Poker isn't a game of chance, it's a game of skill.

With Oscar-winning screenwriter Aaron Sorkin running the game and Jessica Chastain calling the shots, there are already two aces in this pack.

Sorkin's script is up for an Academy Award and comes with his usual snap crackle and pop. Like The Social Network, Molly's Game is based on a true story - the one where a former Olympic level skier starts up an exclusive high-stakes poker game populated by movie stars sports stars and billionaires.

Molly finds herself living the lives of the rich and fabulous, right up until the point she's arrested by the FBI.

Sorkin packages up this story in a typically accessible way - if not memorably in this case - and it's really the casting which collectively drove the story home for me.

Along with Chastain dominating, there's support from the marvellous Idris Elba who steps up as her lawyer, and watch out for a small but perfectly formed performance by Kevin Costner as Molly's father.

Chastain is always a joy to watch and her flawless ability to deliver on the near-frenzied pace of a Sorkin script is very watchable. Anyone fond of the intricacies of the high stakes poker game will also find plenty to love here too.

Molly's Game is not quite a royal flush, but a full house isn't too bad.

Three-and-half stars. 

* Molly's Game is in cinemas now.


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