I’ve eaten a lot of McDonald’s in my time. As a fussy eater, it’s good to know exactly what you’re getting, wherever you are in the world. London, Prague, New York, Berlin – If I spot those Golden Arches I know what I’m getting. It’s like a warm embrace for my stomach.
But how did the Golden Arches take over the world? Most biographical films position themselves from the point of view of one character. The Founder focuses on Michael Keaton’s Ray Kroc, but it does also give time to both the McDonald’s brothers and the company.
Keaton is so damn watchable. Even when Croc is bullying the McDonald’s Brothers you can’t help but keep your eyes on him. In my mind he’s Batman, so to not see Bruce Wayne at all is always amazing to me.
The film could be seen as very critical of Croc, but I’d say it posits an interesting idea; that whilst Croc is ‘bad’ for taking the company from the brothers, perhaps they were greedy to keep it to themselves. There are two sides to the argument, and whilst The Founder doesn’t dig deep, it gives you plenty to think about whilst holding your interest.
Even if a biographical film is interesting and entertaining, I’ll always check how accurate it was later. In this case I’m happy to say The Founder does a good, bordering on great job. The sets in particular nail the look and feel of the early branches. Even if some details are smoothed over or simplified for the stories’ sake, the broad strokes are all there. It’s definitely enough for you to understand the situation correctly.
I’m pleased I finally got round to watching it.