Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Wolf of Wall Street

I rate it slightly above average.
Susan and I saw this movie this afternoon. I think she liked it better than I did. It's long, and eventually for me tedious. Being subjected to three hours of depiction of boundless hedonism, gross consumption, and dishonesty maybe doesn't do it for me like it used to. Of course it's Scorsese, so you're going to have it in your face throughout. And there's a serious intent behind the film. I guess you can encapsulate the movie's plot by: "the rise and fall of an unscrupulous Wall Street trader." That would be Leonardo DiCaprio in the title role, assisted by a whole bevy of talented actors.

I'm sure Scorsese's intention was to lance the boil of the corruption of the financial system and let it run all over the screen. Well, he succeeded for me. And I'm sure there must be some subtleties that escaped me. I never pretended to be an incisive movie critic, but I know what I like. And to tell the truth, I would have liked to have been able to like any of the people in this movie. But it's hard to cut through the opulence, booze, dope, sex, and orgies to get to the point where you care much for any of these people.

It was indeed a pleasure to watch DiCaprio and the rest of the cast, especially Jonah Hill, display their talent. It is amazing what these people can do, and it's amazing to see what Hollywood can do. For some, that would simply be enough. The spectacle, the verisimilitude reproduced. And I cannot deny some genuinely funny moments. But on the whole, it didn't work for me. I give it about a 5 1/2. 
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