Martin Scorsese's 22nd feature film 'The Wolf of Wall Street' examines the rites and rituals of yet another sect. The focus is on the dark side of the American Dream this time.
The movie opens with a montage of scenes featuring in-office dwarf throwing, cocaine consumption, sex and even a helicopter crash, and yet somehow the story increases the madness in almost every scene which follows the tale. 'The Wolf of Wall Street' transports us back to late 1980s and early 1990s New York City.
When we first meet Jordan Belfort, he is more of a pup than a wolf! The youth dreams of finding his fortune at Wall Street. However after losing his profession in the crash of 1987 he falls on heard times. He comes upon a small scale dealership which sells cheap stocks to working class people and is inspired to take over the business, manipulating the finance market and spending millions on his decadent lifestyle. It is only a matter of time before the FBI come calling.
'The Wolf of Wall Street' makes the fifth collaboration between filmmaker Scorsese and lead actor Leonardo DiCaprio. Therefore it is no wonder that both the seasoned artistes seem to know each other's strengths well and manipulates it to bring out the best of what each can offer.
There was much hype about the movie before it made it to the theaters. However sadly it does not deliver as much as it had anticipated. There is too much focus on Belfort's corrupt lifestyle to make it an interesting watch. The actions continue and at times seem to almost repeat. A lot of intimate scenes are crowded into to the more making it almost a sex flick than a black comedy film. If this aspect is toned down 'The Wolf of Wall street' would have been an excellent piece of work. Adapted by Terrence Winter from Belfort's memoirs, a criminal's survivor story, seems almost tailor-made for a movie.
Homour and honesty
DiCaprio delivers an untouchable performance in 'The Wolf of Wall Street'. He manages to stay cool and oozes charm, power and magnetism despite cheating millions of people off their wealth. He pushes us to the very limits of our sympathy and though we are aware that he is a drug addict, con man and a love rat, he manages to still win us over at the end. It is difficult to imagine another actor being able to perform these kinds of stunts without stumbling even once.
The rest of the cast too are well suited for their roles. Leading the pack we have Jonah Hill as Belfort's sidekick Donnie Azoff. He manages to get some of the biggest laughs in the production though Scorsese does not stoop into the level of caricaturing his character. Matthew McConaughey makes his presence felt in the scenes he takes up on. The film does not have a stable female lead. However Margot Robbie needs to be mentioned because she does well as Belfort's trophy wife Naomi. She projects the conscience and emotional drive in 'The Wolf of Wall Street.'
Scorsese fans would be reminded of his previous success 'Goodfellas' at certain stages because both tales relate an individual's quest for success and how easily corruption overtakes them. Scorsese has created a mirror of the world in Wall street for the viewers.
Homour and honesty goes hand in hand to bring to us Belfort's shocking and aggressive pursuit of 'happiness'. The theme aptly goes with Mark Twain's quote 'humour is tragedy plus time.'