Movie Reviews

Review: Atlas Shrugged–Part I

Paul Johansson

Taylor Schilling
Grant Bowler
Matthew Marsden
Michael Lerner
Jon Polito

A railroad executive struggles to keep her business alive while society is crumbling around her. Based on the Ayn Rand Novel.

This movie has been receiving awful reviews since its release. Yes, it is very low budget and tackles a very intimidating and epic storyline…but it does its best with what is available. I don’t expect this entire series to do particularly well critically because film critics tend to be politically biased when it comes to film – typically being on the far left of the spectrum. Being that his movie is pro-capitalism, critics will find whatever reason they can to tear this movie apart.

Many people have said that this movie is too irrelevant for today, but the way the script sets up the film – with gas prices sky-rocketing and trains in terrible shape – it is very relevant (not to mention the politics of the film). There are many allusions to both the republican and democratic debates going on today, which is interesting for anyone who pays attention to what is presently going on in our country.

The film is based on the first 10 chapters of the book, and while it is not as detailed (and cuts out a storyline or two) as the book, the filmmakers do an adequate job for it’s first entry into the series. Part I is a very talky film, so it demands your attention, but it never felt boring. The performances are perfect for each of the story’s characters, even though you won’t recognize many of the actors playing them.

Overall, this is a fine interpretation of Ayn Rand’s epic story – while I would have loved to have seen what Clint Eastwood would have done with it if he had the funding for the HBO mini-series he was working on. Part I held my interest throughout the running time and the ending leaves you anticipating the next installment.

Rating: PG-13 for some sexuality

Runtime: 102 minutes

Grade:  B+

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