Dave's Rating:

2.5

Unlike money, you'll fight the urge to doze.

Who's In It: Michael Douglas, Shia LaBeouf, Josh Brolin, Carey Mulligan, Eli Wallach, Susan Sarandon, Frank Langella, Austin Pendleton

The Basics: Sub-prime mortgage lending stocks phone yelling and suicides because the rates are falling and bears make money and bulls make money and pigs are slaughtered and making money from losing money with the bubble of year-end bonuses bailing out banks with real estate. Those are just words I wrote down in my notebook while watching this movie and I figured if I put them all into one sentence it might make plot-sense to some jerks on the actual Wall Street. My job is just to report that those words are used in this film's script and then to lose almost everything I ever invested with a broker. At the end Susan Sarandon's supporting character goes to work for minimum wage as a nurse's aide but the guys all stay crazy-rich. She needed to be punished.

What's The Deal: There are three movies happening here. One is the romance of Shia LaBeouf with cash, in which he cheats on cash with Carey Mulligan and her meaning-laden fetal ultrasound video. It's boring. The other movie is the one about how the world is going to hell because of terrible human beings running everything and stealing all the money, but ho-hum that's just how it is and maybe you should start stockpiling canned food for when the rioting starts. That movie is boring too, because it's already been on the news and we know how it turned out, so there's nothing for Oliver Stone to rail against. The third movie is about how Gordon Gekko is still the worst person alive. And that movie is AWESOME. More of that guy, please.

The Goofiest Parts Of This Totally Seriousface Movie: It sets up Frank Langella as Shia LaBeouf's mentor, the wise old Wall Street guy who represents the kinder, gentler, honorable days of thieving, lying money men. After his untimely demise, he floats like a ghost near Shia's head when the young man is conflicted. The music cues are great too, gentle strummy David Byrne/Brian Eno songs about "home" every time Carey Mulligan gives LaBeouf the wet-eyed doe stare. (Not a dig at her, though; she's great at that face and I like it when she makes it happen.) And then Charlie Sheen pops by for a second to look weird and act weird, the way Charlie Sheen always does now that he's been sitcom-ruined. So in the midst of all the incomprehensible money-babble, there are still pit stops of entertainment.

What Oliver Stone Thinks Of Wives: The best sequence is an earrings montage. Big, dangling, elaborate Mary J. Blige chandelier earrings on a succession of Wall Street wives at a charity event. It's his way of reminding everyone that these guys have to keep doing what they're doing so that they can decorate their oblivious ladies in the manner to which they've become accustomed to being decorated and what are you gonna do about it? They're mystery creatures who need jewels!

Best Gordon Gekko-ism: When he calls this the "NINJA Generation." No income, no job, no assets. In between scenes where he shows up to spout bons mots I mostly thought about how I need to learn to grow my own vegetables on my apartment balcony.

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Comments (15)

Just a man - 9-24-2010 12:13 PM
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Reviewer is an idiot.

MEEfO - 9-24-2010 5:12 PM
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To the previous commenter: you're clearly uninformed. Dave White is the only one who knows.

Just a Woman - 9-24-2010 7:41 PM
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I hope the reviewer is an idiot becuase this is the first movie in a year that my husband wants to go see.

Scott P - 9-24-2010 8:00 PM
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I'm glad that this review was actually... not a review at all. Just a failed attempt to be witty. Thanks, Dave White!

Anonymous - 9-24-2010 11:53 PM
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There is no such thing as a "bad" review. We all have our own preferences, but critics are just better at translating their thoughts into words. I respect Dave White because of his sometimes harsh but reasonable criticism. Better to have an overcritical reviewer than an undercritical reviewer.

Joyster - 9-25-2010 11:38 AM
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I find, like it or not, Dave White is ALWAYS right...

Greg - 9-25-2010 4:52 PM
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I usually like Dave White's reviews. The only problem I have with this review is that it sounds like he walked into this movie expecting to be "wowed". It's not that type of movie Dave, it's about Wall Street. With the recent drama concerning this topic that we've had to swallow for the last couple of years, oliver stone does a good job of reminding us of the mistakes that have made. The romance is good, and Michael Douglas is still awesome at channelling that iconic character that we love to hate, Gordon

Me - 9-26-2010 11:01 AM
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Movies.com, why did you have to add a "comment" section to the movie reviews? Now it's just going to encourage uninformed, juvenile, troll-ish behavior. Please go back to the old format; Dave's reviews are the best on the internet and it's a shame to see them belittled by stupid comments.

Michelle - 9-26-2010 1:42 PM
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I agree w/ Me. Dave White's reviews are awesome, I read every single one and even though I don't always agree with him taste-wise, they are super entertaining and insightful. People on the Internet don't seem to understand that they are getting one person's opinion and that if they don't agree, "reviewer is stupid" is a juvenile response. And that makes my experience reading these reviews not as fun.

JohnB - 9-26-2010 10:00 PM
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Yeah, Dave is the man, if you don't like the reviews he writes then don't F****** read them, ever thought of that idea 'Just a man' and 'Scott P'? I feel sorry for people who have no gal and can only take out their frustrations on people who have the ability and guts to post public opinions for any movie website, or anything else for that matter.

TM in LB - 9-27-2010 11:30 AM
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Dave's reviews ofent have more brains and wit than the films themselves. This comment section has got to go.

dfgdfgdfgdf - 9-28-2010 5:44 PM
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this movie is so cool and my dad wants 2 see it

Jean - 10-01-2010 8:11 PM
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I'm personally glad movies.com added the comment section. Now I can actually inform Dave White that he's awesome and the period of time he was taken off the movies.com site was quite depressing for me. Best reviewer out there.

patrick - 10-02-2010 6:03 PM
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went to see it last night and was very disappointed. what a snooze fest. Shia Lebore is a present day keanu reeves. same emotion over and over again. the whole story of him with Gekko's daughter is boring. Who Cares! Josh Brolin, Frank Langello are great. Not enough Gekko. Mike douglass is a shell of himself and only comes out a little towards the end. But the whole story was BORING. my daughter fell asleep 30 minutes in and I was drifting off about 30 minutes later.

Anna - 10-07-2010 8:02 AM
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We went to see it and was a snooze - didn't really care for it. Guess we wanted to see how they take our money and get aways with it, but got lost in the making. We love Michael Douglas but not enough of him in this one.

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