I avoided this film, but for some reason my son rented it and gave it to me, so I watched it.
What can I say, the book has taken a life of its own and all the teabaggers and banksters treat it as their holy scripture. A movie was inevitable.
Someone invested a lot of money making the first 1/3 of the book. There are supposed to be two more coming out. If this is any indication let's hope not.
For one I'm sure Ayn Rand is rolling over and screaming in her grave at how stupid the director is.
For the most part it followed the general plot and the first part of the book does have a plot. The major characters are introduced and you pretty well know who the good guys (industrialists) and bad guys (government regulators and the media) are.
The stupidity is that the movie and evidently the writers and directors forgot to include the one vital plot point that made sense of all of what was going on. They were so focused on this shadowing character walking up to people and then them disappearing they skipped Francisco D'Anconia's explaintion of what happened at the San Sebastian Mines. They're mentioned and it shows the military goose stepping to nationalize them, but that's it.
For those not all that familiar with the story this is what's left out.
James Taggart and the other bad guys all invested in these mines. When the're nationalized there's no ore in a copper mine.
At the party for Hank Reardon's wedding anniversary in the book James confronts Francisco and demands an explanation. It's really one of the best parts of the book. Francisco is like a cat playing with a mouse and then gutting it. He explains that he was only putting into practice what all the Communists and Socialists were preaching. He spent his and investor's money hiring laborers and putting them to work all for the common good. Best line, "I hired an engeneer to oversee the project. He wasn't a very good one, but he needed the job badly." The fact that this produced nothing according to their economic theory shouldn't matter.
When Taggart argues that it was a swindle on the investors Francisco points out they didn't do their homework and relied on him wanting to make money not realizing he was wanting to lose money.
This they left out of the movie. Francisco only tells Dagny that James and his cronies tried to ride his brain and not use theirs. For anyone who's actually read the book this was STUPID, STUPID, STUPID.