Film Review The Gambler

It would have been easy for Amy to get lost in The Gambler. As Mark Wahlberg‘s love interest, she’s a quiet woman among big, destructive personalities. But she’s played by Brie Larson, and that means she’s never boring. Larson exudes a wise-beyond-her-years calmness, becoming an oasis of understanding in the desert of Jim’s messed-up life.

In person, Larson seemed equally thoughtful as we discussed her latest role. She shared with me her love of mythology and Game of Thrones, her desire to direct, her fear of red shoes (it’ll make more sense in context), and next film Room. Oh, and in case you were wondering, she absolutely sounds up for tackling a big Marvel role, should it come her way. Read the full /Film interview with Brie Larson after the jump. 

What attracted you to this role?

I think that she represents the place Jim is trying to get to. It’s not the love interest necessarily, it’s more of, she holds this space of being an authentic self that we watch him through the movie trying to get to. I thought that was an interesting thing for women to see.

I liked you in it but I wished you were in it more, so I was wondering if there was more in the script we didn’t get to see. Or maybe it’s just wishful thinking on my part.

No… It’s just wishful thinking. There’s nothing that got cut.

What do you look for in a script in general?

I really love the stories that have been around since the beginning. I love mythology and folklore and these very typical universal stories. They’re the stories that we’ve been repeating forever, we’ve been repeating them in movies for so long as well. They’re the ones that always — we change the color, we change the costumes, but they’re always the same thing and they become these really transformative experiences for the audience. And those are the films that I look for. But they just take different shapes. This time [in The Gambler] the allegory is then put into gambling and it’s told with [screenwriter] Bill Monahan’s mind, which makes it the same story but abstract and dark and gritty and heady and a little bizarre at times.

So, you talked a little bit about what your character represents to Mark Wahlberg’s character. What do you think your character saw in him, what do you think drew her to him?

Jim goes through seven days of letting go of all of these things. I imagine that Amy went through those seven days before the movie began. So there’s a sense of recognition and of knowing between the two of them. She sees him as someone on the verge of taking this step, and he sees her as that place that he knows he’s to get to, and they recognize each other. She sees through the complications and the weird armors that we put on ourselves. I think we’ve all had that at least one time in our life, I hope. It’s such a great experience when you meet someone and you’re like, oh I see through everything that you’re doing. And that’s what that is. It’s not really easily described with words, unfortunately.

Do you have any thoughts on what happened to your character or to those two characters after the end of the movie? ‘Cause it kind of ends on your character, so what do you think happened next?

You know, I would hope that it ends well. Usually, in my own experience, when you unite the two halves of the brain — which is, once again, just mythology talk — it leads to good. At least that’s what they say.

So you’re feeling optimistic about them.

I’m feeling optimistic.

Keep reading for Larson’s plans to direct and her thoughts on Game of Thrones and Captain Marvel.

Continue Reading Interview: ‘The Gambler’ Star Brie Larson on ‘Game of Thrones’ and Marvel >>

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