The Wolf of Wall Street – Review

This review includes interview segments with Martin Scorsese in the video version only.

Oscar nominations will be announced on January 16th. In the meantime, entertainment PR firms are working hard to create buzz around certain films with the hopes of capturing a nomination.

I was surprised that Gravity had the least amount of buzz, especially since most people in and outside of the industry have assumed that Gravity will receive the most nominations.

The real surprise for me was being hooked by all the press about Martin Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street, which turned out to be a complete waste of time.

The Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill movie had such a thin storyline that it could have been told in a half hour. But due to the excess of DiCaprio’s Jordan Belfort character, Scorsese wanted the audience to experience what it feels like to experience over-the-top excesses found in drugs, alcohol, debauchery and wealth – Ridiculous wealth.

(See Scorsese interview segment in video)

Somewhere in the three-hour movie, Scorsese seemed to forget what the story was about and just showed more and more excess. And then after that he showed more excess.

The film’s theme came across clearly: It doesn’t matter if you’re a good person or a bad person, as long as you have money everything will work out for you. Not a good message and clearly a slap in the face for individuals who have money and use it for the good of their family, companies and communities rather than on excessive and self-indulgence.

There was one redeeming moment in the film when DiCaprio’s character came to his senses and turned over a new leaf. Unfortunately, the FBI pulled Belfort back into his old lifestyle in order to use him as a pawn to take down dozens of additional people that used illegal means to live an excessive lifestyle. Here is a clip of DiCaprio’s Belfort coming to grips with the fact that FBI Agent Patrick Denham, played by Kyle Chandler, is after him.

(See film clip in video)

If for some reason you find yourself sitting in front of the worst film of the year. You will appreciate Matthew McConaughey’s performance as Mark Hanna in the beginning of the film. McConaughey was so electrifying that Scorsese, two and a half hours later in the film was able to reference a quirky character trait that he created…and it worked. Kudos to McConaughey for a performance worthy of a supporting actor award.

Happy New Year!

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