Who's In It?
|Ryan Gosling, Christian Bale, Brad Pitt and Steve Carell|
What's It About?
When a hedge fund manager realises the housing market in the US is a bubble, he decides to invest in the chance of it failing; which in turn attracts more managers to do the same.
The shooting of this film feels very disjointed - through three perspectives - which can work to fantastic effect but it switches between these with no warning and they never actually meet up; leaving it feeling like three episodes of Prime Time mashed into one. While I do find the subject matter very interesting, it just felt too long at around one hour, but it then goes on for another.
You can tell this is Adam McKay's (Anchorman, Step Brothers) first 'serious' film by the fact it tries to give it a light edge by having a lot of Wolf of Wall Street-style talks to the camera, but these feel odd when they stop halfway through the film. It did however have a slight The Other Guys feel, as if it's the credits infographics fleshed out.
The big names in this are all brilliant - Ryan Gosling is a banker selling out his own bank (because we all know how likely that is), Steve Carell a hedge fund manager who hates banks and just wants to make them suffer (again, relate-able to many), Christian Bale, an odd introvert who discovered the bubble and Brad Pitt a handler for a pair of young hedge fund managers. All other characters seem a bit cartoonish, even the "sceptical numbers guy" is an over-the-top caricature.
While the movie is interesting, it's shot in a way that overloads you with totally irrelevant imagery in an attempt to make some of it relate-able. I enjoyed it and would recommend it to anyone with an interest in the subject matter, considering its echoes in recent real like economics but I wonder what could have been done with another director.