Monday, January 09, 2017
THE FOUNDER -- My review
THE FOUNDER was the story of Ray Kroc who turned a tiny local hamburger stand into the McDonalds behemoth. In short, it was movie about two schmeggie brothers who found a way to build a better mousetrap and the hustler/con man/capitalist who ran with it, took good ideas from other people, and created an empire built on glitz and malnutrition, all the while stealing another man’s wife. It’s certainly a tale of our time. Since they took lots of liberty with the facts they should have just gone all the way and had Ray Kroc run for president and win.
Yes, the McDonald brothers came up with an ingenious assembly line system for turning out burgers and fries at a much faster rate than competitors. And they devised the Golden Arches and the notion that they should cater to families and not the cast of GREASE. But without Ray Kroc there’s no Ronald McDonald and McRibs. So who contributed more to society?
One way the movie failed for me was in the “power of suggestion” department. How many times have you seen a movie where they’re eating a scrumptious meal and the film ends and you can’t wait to get your own bowl of pasta, or thick steak? I had absolutely no desire whatsoever to go to McDonalds when THE FOUNDER ended. Even after the scene early in the movie when Michael Keaton first encounters McDonalds. He gazes at people climaxing while eating 15 cent burgers. He himself then takes a bite into one and later tells the McDonald brothers that it was the greatest hamburger he’d ever eaten. That’s like someone saying 2 BROKE GIRLS is the greatest sitcom they’ve ever seen. My salivary glands sure weren't firing.
In short, THE FOUNDER is a very cynical film – achieving the American Dream by squeezing out the originators and ultimately taking credit for their ideas. In stories of this sort you kind of expect the scoundrel to get his comeuppance. But in real life that doesn’t always happen. Ray Kroc gets away with everything. Like I said, a tale of our times. The real title should be THE HAMBURGLAR.
On another note: If you haven't checked out my new podcast yet, you can find it by clicking here. Thanks for listening if in fact you did.