This exceptional movie gets 4.5 Icees and came really close to getting the full 5.  In fact, I can’t really even argue why it doesn’t, other than to say that there is just something in me that can’t quite go that extra half an Icee.

Jessica Chastain gives yet another stellar performance as a strong female lead, something she has done before in both Miss Sloane and Zero Dark Thirty.  I won’t say she is in Meryl Streep territory, but she’s on the border looking in.  Also, as those that watched Miss Sloane know, this actress can deliver the lines, and she does so here with the same intensity that you have come to expect with her. In this movie, which is based on a book and true story, she plays Molly Bloom, a former world-class skier turned poker maven. She displays her strength and moral character throughout the film.  Since the book was written by the main character, it seems a little over the top, but that may be how it went down.  We will never know.
It was nice to watch Idris Elba in a movie where you get to see him act. Not as some type of hero (Thor and Dark Tower) or someone with a bunch of makeup on (Star Trek), but as an attorney where his dialog in the thing.  He does a fantastic job with this.
The storytelling in the movie was good as well. At first I didn’t think I would like the method chosen, but after a while it just flowed really well and didn’t bother me at all. The movie is done in such a way that you don’t realize that the movie is 2hrs, 20min long until your bladder tells you that it’s time to take a break, and even then you don’t want to because you’re afraid you’ll miss something.
If you are like me and normally watch superhero or action flicks, this is a nice break from that. The story is good and the acting is fantastic, but one word of warning. This is a movie you have to watch and listen to attentively. You can’t be passive about listening or else you will miss something.  You know, that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
If you want a good movie, this is one I definitely recommend.  No scenes during or after the credits.