Monday, 21 December 2015 00:00

The Big Short Featured

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Review written by Jon Patch with 3 out of 4 paws

The Big Short

Paramount Pictures, Regency Enterprises and Plan B Entertainment present an R rated, 130 minute, Biography, Drama, directed and written by Adam McKay, based on the book by Michael Lewis with a theater release date of December 23, 2015.

 

There is a lot going on in this story that basically tells the truth about what happened in mid-2000 during one of the worst financial crisis of our generation in the USA. Four major players in the financial industry used the “credit default swap” to work against the CDO market to reap individual success and wealth against the financial institutions that were raping the average home mortgage owner.

In March of 2005, Michael Burry M.D. (Christian Bale) a pure numbers genius with a glass eye, love for loud rock music and a corner office at Scion Capital has a prediction that the housing market will explode in the next few years. He purchases millions of stocks from many of the biggest financial institutions like Goldman Sachs, Bank of America and others to the tune of almost 2 billion. Grant it his boss at Scion was none too happy since everything he did was based on only a possibility but for Michael it was a certainty that would show a huge profit in the end.

Word got out about his scheme and Jared Vennett (Ryan Gosling) latched on in hopes of a huge personal payout in the end. In order to see this happen he persuaded a stressed out, well known financial man and his team to buy off him at the tune of millions convincing them that they too would make even more than himself and on that note Mark Baum (Steve Carell) and his team are on board. Grant it, all along this is here say and still only a hunch, which is for most but as for Burry it’s a definite.

Only by chance do Charlie Geller (John Magaro) and his partner Jamie Shipley (Finn Wittrock) get involved as the final four when they learn of this opportunity in a very odd chance opportunity after a failed interview with JP Morgan Chase. They reach out to a retired financial expert that has become a man of peace, tranquility and natural gardening, Ben Rickert (Brad Pitt), who in turn helps them with advice and connections in the market place.

When the housing market crashes leaving millions out of work and even more out of homes the four groups of men made their money but the banks and Wall Street lost billions yet through it all it was the little guys, us, that suffered and all the greedy ones that never once looked over their shoulders got caught with their pants down yet unfortunately still enjoying the breeze.

The film is extremely well done with an admired cast but for the average person that should see this film if not for the enjoyment of it at least the knowledge I predict the box office will not be so grand. Gosling narrates the film throughout and plays into the camera like moments from an old film starring Matthew Broderick, (Ferris Bueller's Day Off). It works though and helps to keep the audience in tune with what is actually going on, trying to explain things as to not have the terminology go over many people’s heads. Doesn’t matter anyway because a lot of it still will! An important story well written and directed with some bad language and nudity help in keeping the plot moving but for many even though I rank it high for many reasons I still don’t think it will do well in the theaters. Maybe more so on DVD or pay for view.

A great cast by far with many supporting characters and extras keep the story line alive. Bale once again molds himself into his character breathing life as much as possible into this one direction type personality. Carrell is superb yes a bit obnoxious and loud but he does it well. Gosling looking all spruced up and business-like really works the camera giving his character a kind of love hate scenario. Magaro and Wittrock are almost like Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis from the old days having their good days and bad days but thanks to Pitt who happens to be looking good for his age, the men are at least still having days. As for me thankfully I still have my house. At least for now!

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