The Reel Review


Bryan Cranston and Annette Bening star in this winsome comedy about a newly-retired math whiz and his wife, who discover a perfectly legal, lottery loophole that allows them to gradually bring in a hefty sum of winnings – first, in their home state of Michigan, and later, a ten-hour drive away in Massachusetts. Sharing their newfound knowledge with relatives and friends, the couple soon revives their financially-stagnant, small town of Evart. The film is based on the true story of Jerry and Marge Selbee.

Annette Bening and Bryan Cranston in Jerry & Marge Go Large.

Chocked full of sweet moments, the charmingly simple, heartfelt biography from director David Frankel (The Devil Wears Prada) is also lifted by Cranston and Bening’s earnest performances as the couple that finds a renewed lease on life as a result of their newfound hobby – and boatload of winnings. Rainn Wilson (The Office) is also a standout as the down-on-his-luck liquor store owner whom they befriend while routinely purchasing their thousands of tickets every few weeks, with Anna Camp (Pitch Perfect, True Blood) and Jake McDorman (Happiest Season, Greek) as their adult children.

Bryan Cranston and Annette Bening in Jerry & Marge Go Large.

The film’s pacing lags a tiny bit when the couple starts doing battle with a rival lottery group from Harvard University (in reality the group was from MIT), but Jerry & Marge Go Large is still the sweet, feel-good story we all need right now to restore our faith in humanity.


Jerry and Marge Selbee at the New York premiere of Jerry & Marge Go Large premiere in June 2022.

• Over the course of their nine-year lottery career, Jerry and Marge Selbee raked in a whopping $27 million for their town’s 25-person investment group, with an estimated $7.75 million of that for themselves, until the Massachusetts Lottery retired the Winfall game in 2012. The Selbees still live in Evart, Michigan.

Jerry & Marge Go Large was filmed in Atlanta, Georgia.

• Rainn Wilson, Anna Camp and Larry Wilmore all appeared in the hit TV series The Office, with Wilson starring as Dwight Schrute, with Camp appearing as Pam’s sister, Penny, in Season 6 and Wilmore as the diversity sensitivity trainer in the first season.



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