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May 13, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

When it comes to reviews of Jodie Foster’s Money Monster, which was screened out of competition at the Cannes Film Festival Thursday night, you pays your money and you takes your choice. Although the festival audience gave the film a four-minute ovation following the screening, U.S. critics, for the most part, held their applause. Joe Morgenstern writes in the Wall Street Journal that Foster directs the film “unsubtly” and calls the script “clumsy.” The two principal characters, played by George Clooney and Jack O’Connell, he writes, amount to “flamboyant but transparent contrivances in a polemic disguised as a thriller.” On the other hand, he concedes, Julia Roberts’s character is “the real dramatic deal.” A.O. Scott in the New York Times writes the reverse review, calling the film a “speedy, self-assured thriller, nimbly directed by Jodie Foster from a packed script by Jamie Linden, Alan DiFiore and Jim Kouf.” Several critics take a middle stance about the film, which concerns an angry investor (O’Connell) who has just lost his savings after taking the advice of a television stock guru (Clooney) and who storms the studio where Clooney is broadcasting and takes him hostage on the air. Comments Lindsey Bahr of the Associated Press: “Money Monster might not be a great movie, but it is a comforting movie-movie that’s still fun to watch even if it whiffed on being something more.” The real question may be why this slick Hollywood film got the red-carpet treatment at Cannes. And the answer can be found in the names of the stars and their director. The Cannes Film Festival, after all, is not just about films; it’s almost equally about glamor. Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 1.20.25 PM