Movie Review: The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)

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four and a half stars
When it comes to the stock exchange, the very best time to pick a time period for a movie is in the 80s and 90s days of excess. And if you want to turn that movie into a black comedy crime filled with corruption and betrayal, you can’t go wrong with Martin Scorsese as a director.

Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio) is a man making a fortune on penny stocks…and spending it all on sex, drugs and excess. It shows Belfort making a fortune, at the expense of the little man, and getting off nearly scot free. It should be annoying, but it is just plain entertaining.

It’s always amazed me how baby faced DiCaprio can play such a great villain. In this movie, he is no less than perfect. He is smug, self righteous, arrogant and utterly without remorse. What makes this movie fantastic includes DiCaprio frequently shattering the forth wall and making corrections right at the audience.

Terence Winter, whose previous credits include Boardwalk Empire, wrote the screenplay based on Belfort’s biography, and he couldn’t have done a better job. The film makes no apologies. It’s not designed to be an indictment of corporate America. It’s designed to say one thing. [more…]

“Hey everyone, look how bad we’re being”

Martin Scorsese has not gotten worse with age. In fact, he just seems to keep getting better. The direction of the movie following the slick, fast paced dialog and over the top exuberance of DiCaprio. Visual jokes abound and the cinematic techniques could be used to teach a course in direction. Scorsese proves that he is now, and always will be, not just a director, but the director.

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Of course, this isn’t Goodfellas, but it doesn’t need to be. It’s a movie about shocking excess and bad behavior. The stakes are not life or death. There are no stakes. Belfort made it clear in his biography that there was no one he was afraid to take from, and no amount of money was too much to take.

While some might call this movie hollow and shallow, keep in mind it’s designed to be hollow and shallow. It is a comedy of criminality, not flipping Schindler’s List.

My main problem with this film is the run time. In today’s world of instant gratification, 3 hours is a bit too long to expect to hold anyone’s attention, especially when the story has no true moral or comeuppance. This could have easily been covered in an hour and a half, and the massive 3 hour run time is something that should be reserved for epic fantasies, not fast paced black comedies.
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DiCaprio really managed to keep a loose, love to hate him attitude throughout the whole movie. As much as you want to hate him, you can’t. He’s just that charming.

I have to admit, I’m a little ashamed of enjoying this movie as much as I did, and I have to give Scorsese props for having the gonads to release this movie. In an economy where much of the poverty in this country is blamed on excess on Wall Street, it was truly a daring move to produce a movie that almost seems to be celebrating that same excess.

The Wolf of Wall Street is absolutely worth the watch…but get comfortable, because you’re going to be there for awhile.

Watch the Trailer below and if you’ve seen the film, Earn some Points and leave a Review!

Martin Scorsese Heckled during Screening of “Wolf”

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Apparently Scoresese’s Wolf of Wall Street has not been well received by everyone. That’s ok, unless you are trying to win an Academy award and your movie pisses off a member of the Academy.

During the official AMPAS screening of his film, a member was reportedly outraged and confronted both Scoresese and Di Caprio as they emerged from an elevator on their way to a post movie Q&A. The encounter was captured on the facbook page of 75 year old actress Hope Holiday. She wrote,

“[L]ast night was torture at the Academy — ‘The Wolf Of Wall Street’ – three hours of torture – same disgusting crap over and over again – after the film they had a discussion which a lot of us did not stay for – the elevator doors opened and Leonardo D. Martin S. and a few others got out then a screen writer ran over to them and started screaming – shame on you – disgusting –

”

FACTS DISPUTED

A rep for Paramount Pictures says that Holiday’s description is exaggerated. The rep said that a negative comment was made but there was no such screaming involved.

The film is about Jordan Belfort and if you have read the book or know of Belfort then you know that he had an epic drug addiction, made an insane amount of money on Wall Street and with drugs and money usually comes crime, sex and more deviant behavior; all of which is in Scoresese’s wheelhouse. Scoresese himself knows that the movie is not for everyone. During an interview with The Wrap he says, [more…]

“It’s brutal. I’ve seen it with audiences, and I think it plays. I don’t know if it will be to everyone’s taste – I don’t think it will. It’s not made for 14 year olds.”

THE GOOD NEWS

The good news is that this does not automatically mean that he is out of the running. In 1995 during the AMPAS screening of Casino someone stoop up in the middle of the film and yelled “Disgusting! Pornography! Crap!” at the screen. Casino was nominated for a Best Actress Oscar and won a Golden Globe for Sharon Stone and Scorsese was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Director. That movie is a certified classic.

The turnout for “The Wolf” screening was said to be good and there was some applause, both good signs for the Scoroses – Dicaprio combo. I would like to say that both don’t care about awards at this point in their career….but even if it’s a little I’m sure they do.

With a Christmas release, the film’s Box office success will depend largely on audience feedback. As a fan of the book, of Jordan Belfort, Scorsese, Dicaprio and Jonah Hill, I will be there on Christmas day!

Movie Poster Release for ‘The Wolf Of Wall Street’

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After some speculation that The Wolf of Wall Street would not be released this year, it has been confirmed that the movie will indeed be released in 2013. In fact it will land on Christmas day; an extra gift for all of those like me that are eagerly waiting to see this epic tale hit the big screen.   With all that uncertainty behind them the movie studio can now began promoting the film which includes these newly released movie posters that confidently display the December 25th release day.

Both of the new posters do a good job of showing the chaos which was Jordan Belfort’s life, both personally and professionally.

Leonardo DiCaprio will be playing the lead as the fanatic, drug induced, financial genius and if you had the pleasure of reading the book by the same title, you will know that Belfort’s life was more than just a  wild ride.  In fact the movie had to be toned down to receive an R-rating. [more…]

With a trifecta of talent which will include DiCaprio as lead, Scorsese as director and Terence Winter (the Sopranos, Boardwalk Empire) behind the screenplay we will most definitely have an Oscar contender on hand.  Watch the extended trailer and see the new movie posters below.

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Scorsese’s ‘The Wolf of Wallstreet’ Possible Release Date Push.

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If you are like me, you can’t wait for Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street however, we might have no choice.  There are rumored to be two big issues: 1. The movie is three hours long and 2. Contents of the movie currently as is, gives it an NC-17 rating.

If you have read the book based on the life of Wall Street Mogul Jordan Belfort then you can easily see how an NC-17 rating could apply.

For Paramount this is familiar territory as they had a similar issue and with Scorsese back in 2009 when “Shutter Island” got pushed to 2010.  Ultimately this was a win for the studio which gave them $130 million as it entered and smashed a non-competitive 1st quarter.

There is buzz that The Wolf of Wall Street can possibly be in the running for Best Picture.  Because “Nebraska” is also slotted for November chances are that “Wolf” will get pushed but only to December.  Not to mention all of the ad dollars lined up for its launch. [more…]

Insiders say that the current cut for the film is indeed 180 minutes long and won’t even be ready for the New York film Festival.

For now, I would count on Jack Ryan’s Christmas release to get pushed to MLK 2014 and Wolf to take the Christmas time slot, positioning it for an Oscar run.  Directed by Scorsese, leading by Dicaprio, Screenplay by  Terence Winter (Boardwalk Empire) and a supporting cast that includes Jonah Hill, Rob Reiner and Matthew McConaughey, best picture is not out of the question.  Not to mention it’s one of my all-time favorite books, so hopefully they don’t screw it up.

Just in case you missed it, here’s the Trailer.  McConaughey could get supporting actor, he’s nothing but brilliant in the trailer.

source: THR, Screen Rant