Against all odds, All the Money in the World was locked on time prior to the December 22nd release date. The film was pushed back to December 25th because of a crowded field at the box office leading up to the holiday weekend.
Make no mistake, director Ridley Scott was quick to recast actor Kevin Spacey with Oscar winner Christopher Plummer, reshoot scenes with Plummer over the course of nine days, and still get the film locked. Give Scott a lot of credit here. He’s managed to do what a lot of filmmakers have not done when accusations start being made against one of the film’s actors. It’s going to be interesting to see if other filmmakers follow suit in recasting those actors. There’s already two films set for release that feature a certain actor and it’s been nothing but silence from Fox and Warner Brothers, let alone filmmakers.
What makes the recasting of Plummer even more impressive is that he gets a solid 45 minutes of screen time in All The Money in the World. Again, Plummer got 45 minutes on screen that were likely shot from multiple angles over the course of nine days. It’s very likely that he’ll get an Oscar nomination nonetheless for his supporting performance.
It’s actress Michelle Williams who shines as Gail Getty, the mother of 16-year-old John Paul Getty III (Charlie Plummer). The younger Plummer, no relation to the veteran actor, breaks out in his performance as the kidnapped Getty. One of the big takeaways from the film is just how greedy billionaire J. Paul Getty Sr. is with his money. During the time period in which the film takes place, Getty is the richest man in the world. When his ex-daughter-in-law comes to him and asks for help with paying the ransom money of $17 million, he outright refuses to do so. How greedy does a man have to be in order to not pay that kind of money?
This is where Fletcher Chace (Mark Wahlberg) comes into the picture. The Getty advisor teams up with Gail to bring her son in a race to bring her son home. Williams and Wahlberg display great chemistry together. Much attention will be paid to Plummer taking over for Spacey but these two don’t phone it in. It’s the best Wahlberg performance in the last two months.
The veteran Plummer plays the greed quite well for someone who was quickly recast. The makeup or visual effects team did a solid job in making him look younger during the flashback scenes. As time ticks, one can’t help but fathom why Getty doesn’t want to bother helping his grandson. How can a man–again, the richest man in the world–be so selfish with all that money? What happened to loving the family?
Scott did the unthinkable with the film. How other filmmakers will follow suit in similar instances remains to be seen.
Tristar Pictures opened All The Money in the World in theaters on December 25, 2017.
Director: Ridley Scott
Screenplay: David Scarpa
Cast: Michelle Williams, Christopher Plummer, Mark Wahlberg, Romain Duris, Charlie Plummer, and Timothy Hutton.