We don’t exactly truck much in movie reviews here at Abnormal Returns. Then again they don’t make many movies about the financial crisis. The movie Margin Call is an outlier in any number of ways. The financial blogosphere has been abuzz ever since the trailer came online.
Much of the mainstream press gave Margin Call rave reviews. However Joe Weisenthal at Business Insider thinks that despite the accuracy of the film it is unlikely to gain much business from Main Street. He writes:
So finance people will love Margin Call, but most people just won’t get it.
Daniel Gross at Yahoo! Finance also thinks the movie is realistic in its depiction of Wall Street. He writes:
The film is sharply written and fast-paced despite the absence of fireworks. In the end, though, Margin Call lets Wall Streeters off easily…
The financial crisis was in many ways too abstract for most people to understand. At one point in Margin Call Paul Bettany’s character Will Emerson says:
F*ck normal people.
Business, let alone finance, rarely makes for good cinema, and Margin Call may not become a mainstream hit. At least Margin Call will highlight in a compelling way the wide chasm between Main Street and Wall Street.
Additional items worth a look:
Joe Morgenstern, “As such, it’s chilling and enjoyable in unequal measure. Entertainment predominates, but entertainment with smarts, and a well-honed edge.” (WSJ)
David Denby, ““Margin Call” is one of the strongest American films of the year and easily the best Wall Street movie ever made.” (New Yorker)
A. O. Scott, “The most chilling and most believable aspect of “Margin Call” is how calmly and swiftly its drama of damage control unfolds.” (NYTimes)
Owen Gleiberman, “Chandor gets what Oliver Stone was going for in Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps with a lot less fuss.” (EW)
Generally positive consensus reviews. (Rotten Tomatoes, metacritic)
Watch Margin Call from the comfort of your home. (iTunes, Amazon*)
*Amazon affiliate. You know the drill.