Sunday, August 21, 2011

3 Short Paragraphs: Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

2010, Oliver Stone (remember the days when ollie stone movies didn't just come and go?) -- download

Once again, I downloaded a movie and was not sure why I did. I guess, that unless I missed a movie in the theatre, that is the main reason I download movies. I am not sure about the movie and damn not-sure enough to know I don't want to invest $7 in renting the blu-ray = download. I won't even go into how hard it is to actually find a decent place that rents blu-rays. I was not a fan of the first movie, the seminal Charlie Sheen vehicle. I wasn't a fan because I don't know anything about making money, using money or even keeping money. Here I am over 20 years later, working for a financial software company, and I still don't know anything about the stock market, making money or keeping money.

But I was curious about what they would do this time round when so much of our recent news has been about investing companies and big corporation fat cats stealing people's money and barely going to jail over it. Gordon Gekko was the cliche that we compared all the real money villains to: Madoff, Enron, etc. See, I know so little about this grand money scheme, I couldn't think of more than one name. But now we have Gekko coming out of jail espousing that we are not only fine with the kind of business he did back in the 80s but we also sort of revering it. We all just want a piece of it.

Really, the thing I caught most about the movie was that you can never make enough money. Shia's Jake Moore was a good guy. Still good at making money hand over fist & living in a lifestyle that astounds poor schmucks like me, but he was appearing to do some investing in Good as well. The big example was his desire to get an alternative energy company's research off the ground. But greed makes him want more and greed makes him dash his chances with Gekko's beautiful daughter Winnie, played by Carey Mulligan. And there is also the backdrop of the 2008 crisis and the sub-plot of Moore seeking revenge for the induced suicide of his mentor, but really, you are just left shouting at the screen as to why Moore is jeopardizing what he already has, playing into the hands of the ultimate lizard... er, Gekko. So, greed doesn't pay. Well, except for Gekko who is able to steal his family's cake and eat it too.