I was browsing through Amazon Prime Video looking for something to watch when I came across The Last Tycoon, a series I had nearly forgotten about from the Amazon Pilot Season. I remember being super excited about it due to the cast, the sets, the costumes and the source material. Now that it has finally arrived, I decided to watch it and see if the rest of the series was as good as the pilot. And disappointed I was not.
Firstly, the show follows an extremely talented film producer named Monroe Stahr as he tries to make movies during the time of the Depression. Although, the premise seems fairly narrow, I was surprised by the amount of issues that the show manages to highlight such as socialism, capitalism, antisemitism, immigration and the rise of Nazism in Europe. These topics come up in period pieces all the time, however, I have never seen them in a series that focused on film making. So, for me, it was fascinating to learn how all these different topics effected the film industry during that time.
Furthermore, I have to say that the characters and the acting were the best part of the series. My favourites being Matt Bomer as Monroe Stahr, Kelsey Grammer as Pat Brady, Lily Collins as Celia Brady and Rosemarie DeWitt as Rose Brady. Ever since I saw Matt Bomer as Neal Caffrey in White Collar, I have been a huge fan. He is excellent at playing these suave, smooth and charismatic characters who are suffering from some kind of emotional trauma. Monroe Stahr was a fascinating character who I often found myself rooting for, even though I wasn’t always a fan of his methods. Furthermore, Pat Brady was the character that had me on the fence the most- that’s to say I couldn’t decide whether I liked him or not. On one hand, I understood that all the actions he took throughout the series were so that he could make movies during a difficult period. On the other hand, his heartless decisions often left a sour taste in my mouth as I began to question whether the ends really did ever justify the means. Nonetheless, I enjoyed watching him on the screen thanks to Grammer’s performance.
Additionally, Lily Collins was well cast as the daughter of a rich man who recognised her own privilege and worked to make the world fairer. Watching her progress throughout the series gave me the impression that I was watching the character grow up. At the end the season, I felt like a proud mother watching as her child graduate from uni. On one hand, this highlights that I get way too invested in my TV shows. On the other hand, it highlights how Celia was a character that engaged the audience; one that everyone cared about and wanted to succeed. Moreover, Rosemarie DeWitt was probably my favourite female character as she was funny, sarcastic and clearly unappreciated by most who knew her. DeWitt played a familiar role (bored housewife who wants meaning in her life) but the character never became a stereotype.
If I had any negatives at all, it would be that when season ended, I was left with a few questions. Now, that’s all fine and good when a second season is confirmed but that is not the case here. I really hope that I won’t be left hanging lol.
Rating: 4/5 Stars
So, if you’ve seen The Last Tycoon, what did you think? Who’s your favourite character? Leave your answer in a comment, thanks for reading 🙂
Featured Image taken from imbd website