I’m slumping hard.
Movie of the Week:
The Edge of Seventeen
- The Founder (2016): In a very by-the-book movie about Ray Kroc, the ‘founder’ of McDonald’s, we get a bit of everything – a great performance by Michael Keaton, a lesson in (adapted) history and a morality tale about the power of capitalism. What quite works is how the business aspects are approached, conveying how a good idea is often not enough to be successful. Similarly to The Social Network (2010), but with much less bite, it frames the question of who the owner of a concept really is and how financial momentum usually trumps binding agreements in settling such discord. A relevant shortcoming is the tip-toeing around taking a stand about any of the issues – the lightweight to non-existent criticism of McDonald’s as a contributing factor to a nationwide (global) pandemic, as well as a force promoting compliance standards not only internally, but also across vertical industries. Perhaps that’s just me showing off my many years of (pointless) management education, but all these elements could have come together into a more original story. 6/10
- The Edge of Seventeen (2016): Back in my teen-zone, I enjoyed closing the week off with an unusually nuanced high-school dramedy. The nuance lies not so much with the story, which is unspectacular, but with the characters – especially the lead, who proves she’s both a hero and an anti-hero, as teenagers usually are. Hailee Steinfeld is pretty great and it’s especially fun to see her share the screen with Woody Harrelson, who expands on his smartass persona from The Hunger Games, to play a grumpy history teacher. The movie gets the perceived angst and solitude right, as Nadine (Steinfeld) struggles with overcoming the disconnect to her generation. How much of that is real disconnect and how much is just self-seclusion and self-pity is for you to decide – and that’s an important part of why the movie stands out. 8/10