The true story of Ray Kroc, a businessman who stole the idea for
McDonald's from two brothers and franchised it into a fast food empire.
The Founder (2016)
Directed by John Lee Hancock
Written by Robert D. Siegel
Starring Michael Keaton, Nick Offerman, John Carroll Lynch,
Laura Dern, B.J. Novak, Patrick Wilson, Linda Cardellini,
Kate Kneeland, Justin Randell Brooke
McDonald's is arguably the most famous American symbol in the world, surpassed only by the Statue of Liberty. It's an American institution that feels like it's always been here. This film tells the story behind the Golden Arches and how one man stole someone else's vision and franchised it, making himself a millionaire in the process. The Founder is the biopic you never knew you needed to see, especially if you enjoy the occasional Big Mac and fries. Michael Keaton excels as Ray Kroc, the milkshake machine salesman who snatched away the billion-dollar idea that two brothers had for a fast food restaurant and turned it into an empire.
Keaton delivers a solid performance as professional a**hole Ray Kroc, one of modern history's biggest thieves. Amazingly, everything he did was either legal or on the border, and any lawsuits the McDonald brothers could've pursued would've bankrupted them with court costs. It's infuriating to see how Kroc took advantage of the system and pulled the rug out from under Dick and Mac McDonald, both of whom are portrayed magnificently by Nick Offerman and John Carroll Lynch. In the end, they lost everything and he become a legend in the fast food business. Life is never fair, I suppose.
The Founder is a well-made film with a well-told story that will elicit an emotional response from anybody who has ever had an idea they thought was revolutionary. People like Ray Kroc are everywhere; Snakes in the grass waiting for something to snatch up. If nothing else, this film teaches you to protect yourself against idea thieves. McDonald's was a perfect example of people being too trusting and losing everything in the process. I hope this film gets more attention, for that reason above all.