Movie Review: ‘Money Monster’ Easily Blends Thrills With Laughs

The Topical ‘Money Monster’ Reveals The Dark Side of 24-Hour News & Finances.

The American public puts a lot of faith into figures they see on TV. Maybe you get a lot of your medical advice from Dr. Oz or you rely on Bill O’Reilly for your news but we all take what these people say at face value. ‘Money Monster‘ does a wonderful job of exploiting the hope we have in people and our lack of real financial knowledge; it even does so with fun tension & a twisted smile.

Jodie Foster’s most recent directorial outing tells the story of TV personality Lee Gates (George Clooney) being held hostage by Kyle Budwell (Jack O’Connell), a young man who blames a money tip from Gates for losing all his family’s money. Budwell barges in during a live broadcast of Gates’ show “Money Monster” and straps the financial host with a bomb. Now, the show’s director Patty Fenn (Julia Roberts) has to work with Lee to figure out what went wrong with company IBIS to cause Budwell and millions of others to lose money.

Money Monster

There was a twist at a every turn. The moment things started going right, it would instantly go darker than you thought. The sickest part being it made you honestly laugh along the way. An original screenplay by Alan Di Fiore & Jim Kouf as well as Jodie Foster’s sleek directing allowed the film to blend genres seamlessly. Without a doubt, the film is a fast-paced thriller but it doesn’t lose its self when it attempts to make a joke. Usually the laugh comes from the situation taking a turn for the worse. An example being the scene where you think the girlfriend of Kyle will calm him down during this suspenseful hostage situation but in reality, she’s a hothead who’s sick of crybaby Kyle being useless to her. The scene successfully ups the ante, makes you laugh, and shows this human side to Kyle Budwell.

All of the different emotions the characters go through really is a testament to how strong the actors are in this piece. While most of the actors have been in both dramas and comedies, this particular piece often shifted between genres in the same scene. I never once doubted anyone in their role. Even minor side characters like hackers, programers, interns and media spin doctors shined with hilarious and impactful bit roles. Most notably in the cast being the producer and star George Clooney. The man can deliver a monologue then break it down in a little hip-hop dance all while selling you his egoistical character with ease. While Julia Roberts and Clooney rarely worked face to face in this piece, their chemistry through an ear-bud or a glance at a screen was totally believable.

You believe in money, not people.
Kyle (O’Connell) to Lee (Clooney)

I admittedly didn’t know what to expect from the film. The trailers never dive into the intelligent humor that’s sprinkled throughout the film. It also hides all the major twists that keeps the plot from becoming cliche-riddled.


Money Monster‘ breezes through its relatively short running-time with a fast-paced story that seems so relevant. It’s released in theatres on Friday, May 13th, 2016.




EJ Moreno
EJ Moreno
Who is EJ Moreno? Is he a trained physician? No. Is he a former Miss Universe contestant? Possibly. With a bachelors degree in film and a love of pop culture, he brings an alternative view to the world of pop culture journalism. Follow him on Twitter @EJKhryst and check out his film work at