Adapted from the Pulitzer Prize winning 2013 bestselling novel by Donna Tartt, “Goldfinch” is a movie that could do with some series trimming, particularly in the first third.

The story begins with 13 year old Theodore Decker (Oakes Fegley) visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York with his mother Audrey (Hailey Wits). During their visit a bomb goes off, Young Theo survives but his mother isn’t as fortunate.

As the dust settles in the museum Theo is given a ring by a fatally injured old man who also tells him to take a 17th Century painting called The Goldfinch.

In the aftermath of the tragedy Theo moves in with his father (Luke Wilson) and it’s here he meets young Ukrainian immigrant Boris Pavlikovsky (Finn Wolfhard).

Unfortunately things don’t go well between Theo and his father and after he finds out that he’s trying to access his inheritance in order to pay off gambling debts Theo runs away from home.

Arriving in New York, where he stayed with his mother prior to her death, Theo is adopted by wealthy Mrs Barbour (Nicole Kidman), the mother of one of his classmate’s.

Things then move on a good number of years and Theo, now grown up and a successful antique dealer (now played by Ansel Elgort), finds himself working in an antiques shop owned by James Hobart (Jeffrey Wright). During this time Theo conceals the stolen painting in a storage unit.

Happy in his new life fate has other ideas as characters from Theo’s past and present meet in a climax that has repercussions for them all.

The Goldfinch takes an eternity to set up its story, the narrative, that jumps between the present and the past, is disappointingly slow, the first third being used mostly to introduce us to the various characters in the storyline.

However if you can stick with it the final payoff just about makes the journey worthwhile.


The Goldfinch (15)

2h 29m

Director: John Crowley
Starring: Ansel Elgort, Nicole Kidman, Oakes Fegley, Aneurin Barnard, Finn Wolfhard, Sarah Paulson, Luke Wilson, Jeffrey Wright, Ashleigh Cummings, Willa Fitzgerald, Aimee Laurence, Denis O’Hare, Boyd Gaines

UK Release: Friday 27th September 2019

The Goldfinch - First Look

The Goldfinch - Trailer 1