Dave's Rating:


It's hard out here for a billionaire.

Who's In It: Taylor Schilling, Grant Bowler, Graham Beckel

The Basics: Dagny Taggart (Schilling) is the hard-driving force behind America's biggest railroad, but her quest for success is ruthlessly impeded by an evil lefty government that wants to crush corporations and redistribute wealth, as well as by a mysterious, shadowy figure who shows up, lures away her best and brightest employees and leaves the unanswerable question, "Who is John Galt?" hanging in the air. She teams up with mega-industrialist Henry Rearden (Bowler), whose new super-strength metal alloy holds the key to rebuilding the greatness of the railroads and, ostensibly, ushering in a new American Renaissance of awesome ideas and individual achievement. Will they conquer all and sweep away the lazy, undeserving poor? For the answers you'll have to watch for parts two and three of this planned trilogy--think CEO Of The Rings--coming sometime soon, maybe, to a theater near you.

What's The Deal:This Sharktopus-budget-level cheap, badly-acted, clumsily-written and stiffly-directed movie about people sitting around tables talking about metal alloys, experimental engine prototypes and gettin' all the money still has a lot to offer film fans on both sides of the Great Ayn Rand Divide. For true believers, it's a way to finally see their ideals projected onto a big screen. This sort of hardcore conservatism simply doesn't often make its way out of a news-oriented setting and Rand fans will probably forgive it its bland TV movie production values. For curiosity-seeking bad-movie nerds, it'll be a whole other experience, one where you'll get to revel in the weird speechifying about "stupid altruism," borderline hypnotic stretches of dialogue about railway systems and hilariously sinister, giant-briefcases-full-of-oppressive-corporation-ruining-contracts-carrying liberals.

Actor Doing Her Best Under The Circumstances: Taylor Schilling delivers a sort of Dynasty-style, ballbusting lady-boss performance as Dagny. Even if you're not into this sort of person in real life, you kind of root for her to crush everybody trying to get in her way. I'm looking forward to parts two and three because, if we're lucky and they get made (and if we're even luckier and they get made by someone not slavishly devoted to the source material) she will go all actual ninja and begin using swords and throwing stars on those parasitical union employees trying to bend her will for the sake of dental coverage.

Nagging Questions I Want Ayn Rand To Answer From Beyond The Grave: I'm curious about the scene where a corporate titan's house burns to the ground and it's reported that fire trucks from other counties have to be called in to fight the blaze. Who does this person think he is, suckling at the public teat of fire department service? Shouldn't he go out and earn his own fire department to put out his possibly arson-related incident? And on the production end, were none of the actors on this thing SAG? Were the carpenters and electricians and other crew members just random day laborers they picked up hanging around outside of the local Home Depot? I think it matters from a purity standpoint.

Dear Objectivists, Don't Get Mad: Because, no joke, if this were a weekly series on Showtime I would watch it every week. And you know it could be with the right pitch. They air Gigolos, after all.


Comments (11)

riblobster - 4-20-2011 9:32 AM
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JG wannabee........it is a movie review. He is cracking jokes, being sarcastic. Even if he does believe what he says, no one wants to hear your political agenda on a movie review comment board. We want to hear Dave's film based political agenda.

Mr.Pinko - 4-20-2011 11:02 AM
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riblobster Oh, only the reviewer gets to inject a political rant because it's from the left. LOL I love how the left want to make this film fail. iOwnTheWorld

John Galt my ass... - 4-20-2011 4:41 PM
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Ayn Rand collected social security and medicare, so don't get your panties in a wad over a economic theory.

I. N. Rand - 4-20-2011 4:42 PM
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Oh, Ayn. If I wanted to see a movie about philosophy based on the primacy of the reasoning mind, I'd earn a fortune, produce one, then watch it...and spend plenty of time scoffing at second-handers along the way. I think HANNA is still showing.

rick geiger - 4-22-2011 7:52 AM
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movie reviewers will pan this movie because they know that the Hollywood elites have visceral hatred for anything having to do with exposing the fascist left wing establishments that wants people to be slaves to the government. plus, they dont want to lose that invite to the special parties etc.

Who is John Galt? - 4-22-2011 8:07 PM
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some douche

Ken - 4-23-2011 9:44 AM
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2 stars?!?! That's more generous than other leftist reviewers. I plan on seeing Atlas next weekend and hopefully your criticism was jaded by your world view.

Justin Mckay - 4-23-2011 10:47 AM
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This is a movie where art imitates life. I didn't know the movie started and I thought I was watching a trailer for a documentary. I didn't notice that there were no Hollywood actors in the movie. Usually in a science fiction movie there is a lot of emphasis on the latest technology and how it is used to enslave humanity. In Atlas Shrugged the technology is to free humanity and that makes it a threat to government. It's no wonder that Hollywood hates this movie. It may change the industry.

Brian - 4-27-2011 10:08 AM
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I have not seen the movie yet but I read the book years ago. What Rand did in her book was take the lefts point of view to the extreme...complete central planning by the government. Complete central planning...i.e. socialism and communisim. Communisim has been an abject failure and proven so time and again while socialism has not completely failed but has made entire socieites of average joes. What socialism does is ultimately still protect the upper class by enslaving the lower classes. This is because it is inherently more difficult to rise economically in that system rather than capitalism. People who want socialism that are poor quite frankly are voting for their own economic enslavement.

I Love it All - 4-27-2011 10:29 AM
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I love the debating. People arguing from all ranges of the spectrum is what makes America one of a kind and a country that will never stop moving forward. BUTTT. People from the left and right need to realize: Left: All rich people aren't sitting on panda bear reclining chairs thinking of ways to remove the standards of living for the lower classes. After all if their workers are sick, they cant work. (Atleast I hope they realize this) Right: The U.S. government is not out to redistribute wealth, stifle capitalism, or promote lazy behavior. After all, a country full of lazy, broke, ungrateful suckers won't really stand a chance in any area of the global arena.

Vicki - 5-05-2011 8:32 AM
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2 stars? Just what I expect from the liberal media. So predictable.

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