“The Founder” | Movie Review

the-founder-66318Grade (B+)

A solid biopic but also an ordinary one at times.

“THE FOUNDER” stars; Michael Keaton, John Carrol Lynch, Nick Offerman and is directed by John Lee Hancock.

This story follows salesman Ray Kroc, who when he met the McDonald brothers found his life changed forever. The brothers had created an ahead of its time fast-food restaurant in San Bernardino, and Kroc felt he could spread it to the world through franchising.

Now this was a paint-by-numbers biopic, but it was still a very good one. The film did have some pacing issues but it was able to deliver the story of how the world’s most famous restaurant came to be with an enjoyable path. It felt like it had a focus of telling the facts and the result was a very interesting, but honestly an equally sad story on how these two normal guys, who created fast-food were inevitably treated, by having their own business ripped out from under them.

Keaton’s performance was excellent as far as entertainment goes, but he at times felt like Michael Keaton, more than he did Ray Kroc. He had his moments where he felt like he delivered some personality traits of the character, but for the most part it was Michael Keaton delivering a charming performance, more than it felt like he was character acting.


Nick Offerman and John Carroll Lynch were also extremely good in their roles. They truly felt like brothers, they felt like two men who shared a dream and watching their interactions was entertaining. I also feel they both commanded attention with their scenes, but there could have been much more of them in this story, to give it more balance.

I know this film was about Ray Kroc, but it was also about McDonald’s and it felt like there could have been a better flow between Kroc’s efforts to franchise, and the brothers influence over this expansion. It could have gone down similar to the way it did in the script, but it felt like there had to have been more communication between the McDonald brothers and Kroc.

Throughout the months and years of Kroc adding more franchises to the McDonald’s name communication seemed overly minimal. They seemed surprisingly hands-off with was odd but really other than a few conversations on the phone they were non existent in this story. Which I guess also helped understand why they ended up loosing it.

Overall, “The Founder” was very entertaining. But the way this film told Kroc’s story felt routine at times and it did have some pacing issues, feeling like it dragged itself through portions of the second-act. The most entertaining parts of this movie were how the brothers came to owning and creating their first McDonald’s, but in the end, that aspect was in the shadows of Keaton’s spotlight, which in its own right, certainly entertains.

Time: 115 min

MPAA Rating: PG-13 (For brief strong language)