The Last Tycoon S01E01 "Pilot" Recap

Meet Monroe Stahr (Matt Bomer), a suave Hollywood producer who is driven by the pain of his loss. His wife, famed Irish actress Minna Davis, died and now Monroe is focused on making one last film as an homage to her memory. It is set to be written by her brother and Monroe must battle with the head of the studio, Pat Brady (Kelsey Grammar). Brady's daughter Celia (Lily Collins) is visiting from university, wanting to get into the family business of film production. She's also harboring a not-so-subtle crush on Monroe but he doesn't seem particularly interested in embarking on that sort of relationship with her.

"American Dream - The Minna Story"
The film is the top priority of the studio's employees, as they are all working relentless to develop, produce, and shoot the film. The series is set on the backdrop of the Great Depression in 1936 and thus the studio is visited by members of the Nazi Party who have their hand in funding films and thus want things to be done their way (no Jewish employees and nothing anti-Nazi or pro-Jewish in the films being produced). Monroe doesn't hide his disdain for the Nazis that visit, and viewers learn that Monroe was raised Jewish. It's not the first secret we will learn about him, as his character is such that he prefers to keep his most intimate thoughts, feelings, and secrets close to his chest.

But the Nazis insist that Monroe's ode to his wife be stopped. A woman marrying a Jewish man (Monroe) would offend "German sensibilities" and despite Monroe's pleading to Brady, they simply can't afford to carry on funding their projects in the midst of the Depression without German aide. Monroe doesn't want to compromise by changing Minna's name, as it wouldn't be authentic to the story being told. Monroe breaks the bad news to Minna's brother Dex, who had been working hard on writing the film, and is devastated by the news. During the encounter, Monroe also meets a charming Irish waitress named Kathleen Moore and seems immediately smitten by her.

Devastation strikes when Dex commits suicide, having lost all hope from the accumulation of tragedies that culminated with the studio axing his film about Minna. Brady offers Monroe a sizable check with the promise that it will go towards his next film and will not be interfered with by the studio. Cecilia tries to make another pass at Monroe so the two can go to the upcoming studio ball together but he politely declines her once more. At the ball, everyone waxes poetic about the grueling nature of being a writer in Hollywood until Monroe is taken aback by the appearance of Kathleen, who has come as another writer's date due to the event having a memorial for Dex. Everyone stares at Monroe when he dances with her as the two clearly have a romantic tension. We have also learned that Monroe suffers from a congenital heart condition and that he could die at any given moment. When Dex's widow arrives to make a scene and attack Monroe for his part in Dex's suicide, Monroe has to take a moment to recollect himself, as his heart took a bit of a hit from the stress of the encounter.

Brady pays a secret visit to a camp where some poor immigrants have taken up residence and leaves a sizable sum of money for them to split. One resident, Max Miner, is struggling to pay for not only himself but his two younger siblings after having moved them from Oklahoma. Max, knowing who Brady is, approaches him discretely to ask for a job and Brady tells him to not tell anyone else and to come to the studio where he can work as a driver.

Back at the ball, Celia is more determined than ever and approaches Monroe with a pitch in which certain details are revised to Monroe's original story that will allow them to continue making their film but making the setting a fictional place that is only symbolic of Berlin and Nazi Germany so the Germans will only be able to object if they acknowledge that their rule is cruel and fascist. Monroe warms to the idea but reminds Cecelia that their relationship is strictly business. Despite this, Celia tells her parents that she does not want to return to university and will be making this film with Monroe and staying in the filmmaking industry.

Monroe pays a visit to Kathleen and convinces her to stay in Hollywood, as she had been thinking about returning home to Ireland. He is later confronted by Brady, who is outraged by Celia's decision to stay and get involved in films and wants to blame Monroe. But he has no choice but to stick to his word and allow Monroe to make the picture.

The final revelation of the film comes when Monroe is revealed to be involved in an affair with Brady's wife, Rose. He tells her that he had previously stated that the affair must stop but she is insistent that they carry on and he gives in to her demands.

The Last Tycoon is available for streaming on Amazon.


Copyright © 2013 Something to Muse About and Blogger Templates - Anime OST.