McMillions$. (HBO) Review

Sky have been launching new channels and offshoots left right and centre as of recently. One of their big launch titles for their   documentary offshoot was this six-part HBO limited documentary series telling the story of how an employee at the outsourced marketing company for McDonald’s defrauded the company out of $20,000,000 by stealing winning tickets for their popular Monopoly game. It’s a fascinating case. Unfortunately, the miniseries is nowhere near as good as it could be. It uses an effective combination of talking heads and slick wordless dramatiseation to tell the story fairly effectively but this is one of the cases where the makers were clearly told they had a running time and episode quota to fill and  stretch the story  or go into excessive detail to fill this time. There’s a potentially fantastic 2-hour movie in here somewhere edge. it just so happens to be stretched out over 344 minutes. Well it’s more engaging on a pure narrative level then something like Tiger King (in that there isn’t the immediate sense that portions of the narrative are being left out in such a way as to fit the narrative slant preferred by the filmmakers.) That said in comparison to something like The Last Dance which is relatively economical with the use of its runtime over a much longer miniseries the stretched portions (pun intended) really drag it down.  It’s definitely worth watching if you have an interest in this case and the if you’re desperate to for new content to watch during the global pandemic this is certainly not a bad choice. 


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