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Film Review – The Wolf of Wall Street

Director:  Martin Scorsese
Screenplay:  Terence Winter
Cast:  Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill and Margot Robbie
Genre:  Black Comedy
Ratings:   ***

Rating Score
* – Poor
** – Average
*** – Good
**** – Very Good
***** – Excellent

The Wolf of Wall Street is a complex narrative leading to a very interesting movie. It is about Jordan Belfast (Leonardo DiCaprio) a New York stockbroker who runs a firm with his friends including Donnie Azoff (Johna Hill), that engages in security fraud and corruption on Wall Street in the 1990’s. An article in Forbes magazine dubs Jordan the “Wolf of Wall Street”, and soon hundreds of ambitious young stockbrokers flock to his company. A lifestyle of lavish parties, sex and drugs follow, with Jordan regularly using prostitutes and becoming addicted to drugs. Then the fun stops when the FBI starts to investigate his company.

The acting is very good. I would not expect any less from Leo and Johna. I can only say, “Well done, boys!” After watching it for the first time, it is obvious that it deserves the five Academy Awards nominations it has received, but it is also controversial for its moral ambiguity and presence of drugs.  It has also been noted for having the most instances of the word “F*#*” in the dialogue. Some critics actually went to the trouble of counting how many times it is used and found an astonishing 569 usages. About 45 minutes have been cut from the nearly three-hour movie for Dubai audiences because of its expletives and its explicit sex scenes and abuse of drugs. That is why at first I did not know what to make of this movie. Did I like it or not? I did at first but after marinating it for a while, it started rubbing me the wrong way. It got to me how rich people can get away with anything. It is astonishing what they get up to if they have too much money in their bank accounts, and they do not know what to do with it.  Why can’t every rich person be like Bill Gates, humble honest and giving(my opinion), it will make the world such a better place. And it should be against the law to have so much money. REALLY!! The people who are supposed to have or earn that much money are the teachers, nurses etc, the people that actually make a valuable contribution to or difference in society. But the movie does show us how we mere mortals at the bottom of the food chain can live if we get to make that much money, legally. Imagine making 1 million a week. Do not get me wrong, I am not saying that if I make that much money, I might not do the same, but the way the exorbitant life of the Wall Street Wolf is portrayed and the fact that so many young people wanted to share in his wealth, definitely puts this movie into a special zone of its own, as far as morals are concerned. The movie does not claim to reflect common practice among Wall Street traders, instead it is very specific that this was a unique individual and a unique case of exploitation and excesses. However, it forces one to take a stand, and I suppose this is what a good movie must do It is an excellent film but it affects the viewer. It is impossible to remain neutral. This is not mindless entertainment, it is reality that slaps you in the face. The genre reminds me very much of Charlize Theron’s Monster. Also uncomfortable to watch, but impossible to disregard. Its impact on the viewer is more than just sensual, it attacks your whole being and your wiring. Anyway, go watch the movie and make up your own mind. See how it taints your morals. Do you want to be rich, and if you do, can you handle it?

 

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