Friday, January 6, 2012

Occupy Movie

Occupy protesters note: A risk analyst at a prominent Wall Street firm, about to discover the company’s assets are mostly thin air, is fired.
After learning what was happening,  a trader is asked by his youthful assistants whether the rumor he made $2.5 million the year before is true.
In a sort of Nero fiddles while Rome burns style, Will Emerson (Paul Bettany) says it was easy and rattles it off in cars, houses, clothes, savings et al. 
When it is pointed out he still had $125.000 left, “Yeah well I did spend $76,520 on hookers, booze and dances, but mainly hookers.
He quickly notes he was able to claim much of that back on his taxes as entertainment.
He might not have been as sanguine if he had not known that like Nero he would not be hurt financially.
In what may be the closest inside look yet at what happened the night the spotlight was turned on the real estate market and it turned out to be a mirage turned out to be a mirage, he defends what the company had been knowingly doing.
A young trader in on the secret says: “This is going to affect people.”
Emerson replies: “Yeah it’s going to affect people like me.”
The youthful trader replies: “Real people.”
Emerson unleashes what is almost a soliloquy: “People want to live like this and their cars and their big f* houses they cannot even pay for … you’re necessary … you’re the only reason that they all get to continue living like kings is we’ve got our fingers on the scales in their favor.
… I take my hand off and the whole world gets really f* fair quickly and nobody actually wants that.
“They want to get what we have to give them but they also want to play innocent and pretend they have no idea where it came from … F* normal people.
“Margin Call” is one of the strongest American films of the year and easily the best Wall Street movie ever made," the New Yorker says. The New York Times and Roger Ebert also are impressed.
Writer-director J.C. Chandor employs a strong cast, including two Best Actor Oscar winners, Kevin Spacey and Jeremy Irons, and Demi Moore for his first feature-length film.
Some might see it as Spacey’s vilification of the market, just as he had shown the American Middle Class in the worst possible light in “American Beauty.” Some would say it was about time and that it would take an artist to do it. The mainstream media, which frequently stumbles when presented with new things like the Occupy movement.
Chandor doesn’t put times or dates on what is happening, just the time of day. The need for the CEO, played by Irons, to come to the headquarters after midnight in a chopper is all that you need.
Irons knows he won’t be able to pull off the dumping of the firm’s mostly worthless assets without the help of Spacey, his market trading manager. Spacey is troubled but takes the money and pulls it off, with Irons noting “there is going to be a lot of money to be made coming out of this mess.”
The movie ends with the company surviving and Spacey burying his beloved Labrador retriever, who he had just had to put down. His ex-wife hears him in the late night hours and comes out and finds him digging a grave in what was once the front yard of their luxury home.

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