All the Money in the World (Blu-ray) (2017)

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Released 18-Apr-2018

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Deleted Scenes- 8 Scenes (7:32)
Featurette-Making Of-Hostages to Fortune (9:33)
Featurette-Making Of-Ridley Scott: Crafting a Historical Thriller (9:12)
Featurette-Recast, Reshoot, Reclaimed (4:56)
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2017
Running Time 132:18
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Ridley Scott
Studio
Distributor

Roadshow Home Entertainment
Starring Michelle Williams
Christopher Plummer
Mark Wahlberg
Charlie Plummer
Andrea Piedimonte
Andrew Buchan
Romain Duris
Case Standard Blu-ray
RPI ? Music Daniel Pemberton


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English DTS HD Master Audio 5.1
English Descriptive Audio Dolby Digital 2.0
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.40:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 1080p
Original Aspect Ratio 2.40:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English for the Hearing Impaired Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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Plot Synopsis

     All the Money in the World is inspired by true events, the 1973 kidnapping in Rome of John Paul Getty III, the grandson of J. Paul Getty, the richest man in the world, who refused to pay any ransom. The film is based on the book Painfully Rich: the Outrageous Fortunes and Misfortunes of John Paul Getty III by John Pearson.

     Gail Harris (Michelle Williams), having divorced John Paul Getty II (Andrew Buchan), is living in Rome in 1973 with her four children when 16 year old John Paul Getty III (Charlie Plummer) is snatched by kidnappers who demand a ransom of $17 million for his return. Gail does not have the money and the boy’s grandfather, the oil billionaire J. Paul Getty (Christopher Plummer), very publically states that he will not pay any ransom. However he does sent his fixer, ex-CIA operative Fletcher Chase (Mark Wahlberg), to Rome to assist the police led by Inspector Corvo (Andrea Piedimonte) in their negotiations with the kidnappers, one of whom, Cinquanta (Romain Duris), becomes friendly with the boy.

     Months pass. The police get a breakthrough and raid an isolated farm house but the boy has already been on-sold by the original kidnappers to a Mafia syndicate; this is business and when J. Paul Getty still will not pay the ransom and Gail does not have the money, an ear is sliced off the boy and sent to a newspaper, with the threat of more body parts to follow if the ransom, now down to $4 million, is not paid immediately. Time is running out.

     Director Ridley Scott could not make a poor film and All the Money in the World looks good, as it was shot on location in Italy, England and Jordan, and it is well made with some tense and exciting sequences. Yet, it almost seems that Scott did not have his heart fully in the project. All the Money in the World does not feel like a Ridley Scott film; Scott’s best films have a heart and passion that draws one in yet here, despite the potential tragedy inherent in a kidnapping of a young man and the good acting in All the Money in the World, the film feels cold and distant and it is hard to feel much compassion for anyone in the film except Gail. As well, films that might be considered more his “baby”, for example Alien: Covenant made the same year as All the Money in the World, on their release on home video receive a director’s commentary and extensive extra features. In contrast, All the Money in the World receives no commentary and minor extras. All the Money in the World also changes events and timelines for dramatic effect, which is fair enough as this is a film after all, but it errs I think when it adds unnecessary “dramatic” incidents, such as the chase at the end of the film that did not really happen. There is enough tension and, indeed, potential tragedy in the events unfolding as is and this sequence feels as unnecessary and tacked on as the similar sequence in Argo, both equally at odds with the tone of the rest of the film.

     The decision to replace Kevin Spacey with Christopher Plummer 47 days before the film’s release date, necessitating the reshooting of 22 scenes in 8 days, has been well documented. It is a credit to everyone how seamlessly the newly reshot scenes fit into the film we now have, and it is doubly a credit to Christopher Plummer, who with little preparation delivers a fabulous performance, one that earned him an Oscar nomination (although he lost out to Sam Rockwell in Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri)). Plummer’s Getty is a lonely man whose vast wealth has bought him priceless ancient artefacts and artwork (although as Getty points out in one scene, there is no such thing as priceless) but not happiness; he will never have enough money to be satisfied and although he does love his grandson he believes that paying a ransom would only put his other grandchildren at risk of kidnapping, although his real bottom line is that further kidnappings would eat into his fortune. With Plummer’s nuanced portrayal of the man we do initially have some sympathy for his position, at least until we see him spending millions on a work of art while pleading too poor to help his grandson. Michelle Williams, who was not the first choice for the role as Angelia Jolie and Natalie Portman were previously attached, is also excellent, and with Plummer carries the film.

     Until the climax alters the tone of the film All the Money in the World is a no-nonsense procedural thriller that nicely evokes the early 1970s and the world of J.Paul Getty, the richest man in the world.

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Transfer Quality

Video

     All the Money in the World is presented in an aspect ratio of 2.40:1, in 1080p using the MPEG-4 AVC code.

     This is not a film that dives off the screen. Detail is sharp but the colours have been manipulated and sometimes look quite dull. The scenes in Saudi Arabia (shot in Jordan) are bright with a yellow palate; England has a steely grey / blue look and Rome a muted brown which is emphasised in the exterior scenes under lights which show that digital yellow tinge. Blacks and shadow detail are otherwise good, skin tones natural (except under the yellow lights), contrast and brightness consistent. Marks and artefacts are not present.

     English subtitles for the hearing impaired are available. Smallish white subtitles automatically translated the Italian and Arabic dialogue.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

     The audio is English DTS-HD MA 5.1; English descriptive audio using a male voice is also available (Dolby Digital 2.0).

     All the Money in the World is not an action film as such although in the sequence where the Police storm the farmhouse the gunshots and impacts are crisp and loud. Elsewhere, the main use of the rears and surrounds is in the crowd scenes where the assembled journalists press in around Gail or the cars she is travelling in. Elsewhere there were ambient sounds, car engines and the music. The subwoofer did not have a lot to do except add some depth to engines and the music.

     The original orchestral and choral score by Daniel Pemberton was effective. To add a period feel the soundtrack included Time of the Season by The Zombies, Wild Horses by The Rolling Stones and an Italian language version of James Brown’s It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s World.

     There are no lip synchronisation issues.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Deleted Scenes (7:32)

     These scenes were cut late in the production as they have dialogue, effects and music. There is no commentary about why they were cut. There are eight scenes - there is a “Play all” option:

Hostages to Fortune (9:33)

     Part of a fairly standard “making of’ looking at the main cast members and their research into the real-life characters they play. It consists of film clips, on-set footage and comments by director Ridley Scott and cast Christopher Plummer, Mark Wahlberg, Charlie Plummer, Michelle Williams and Romain Duris.

Ridley Scott: Crafting a Historical Thriller (9:12)

     This is the second part of the “making of” looking at Ridley Scott and his techniques, the script, the style of the film, locations, the colour palate, costumes and the music. In addition to the individuals above, comments came from the DP Dariusz Wolski, composer Daniel Pemberton, costume designer Janty Yates and cast Timothy Hutton, Andrea Piedimonte and Nicolas Vaporidis.

Recast, Reshoot, Reclaimed (4:56)

     An interesting look at how 47 days before the film’s release date an actor (who is not mentioned by name!) was replaced by Christopher Plummer and the 22 J. Paul Getty scenes reshot in 8 days. On-set footage of the reshoots plus comments from the cast, director, production designer, 1st AD and producer.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

     The Region A US Blu-ray of All the Money in the World has slightly different language dubs and subtitle options but the extras are identical.

Summary

     The publicity about the replacement of Kevin Spacey probably overshadowed the film itself but it is a credit to everyone just how seamlessly the newly reshot scenes fit into the film. All the Money in the World feels a bit passionless but overall it is an effective, entertaining thriller, with good locations and excellent lead performances.

     The video and audio are fine, the extras minor.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Ray Nyland (the bio is the thing)
Monday, May 14, 2018
Review Equipment
DVDSony BDP-S580, using HDMI output
DisplayLG 55inch HD LCD. This display device has not been calibrated. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderNAD T737. This audio decoder/receiver has not been calibrated.
AmplificationNAD T737
SpeakersStudio Acoustics 5.1

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