Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

4.0 8
Director: Oliver Stone

Cast: Michael Douglas, Shia LaBeouf, Frank Langella

     
 

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Ambitious young investment banker Jacob Moore (Shia LaBeouf) discovers that greed is still the name of the game when he forges a fragile alliance with onetime Wall Street hotshot Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas) shortly after Gekko is released from prison. Having served eight years for securities fraud, money laundering, and racketeeringSee more details below

Overview

Ambitious young investment banker Jacob Moore (Shia LaBeouf) discovers that greed is still the name of the game when he forges a fragile alliance with onetime Wall Street hotshot Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas) shortly after Gekko is released from prison. Having served eight years for securities fraud, money laundering, and racketeering, Gekko emerges from prison to find that his daughter, Winnie (Carey Mulligan), prefers to remain estranged, and that his former Wall Street cohorts are still raking in the cash. Flash-forward to 2008, and Winnie is dating a proprietary trader named Jake Moore (LaBeouf), who expresses a passion for green energy while working for his mentor Louis Zabel (Frank Langella), of Keller Zabel Investments. Despite heading up one of the most prominent investment firms in the country, Louis Zabel is forced to personally fight for the future of Keller Zabel before the Federal Reserve after the company's stock takes a hit due to persistent rumors that it's being dragged down by debt. Denied a bailout from the government, Keller Zabel soon falls victim to a hostile takeover lead by powerful investment bank partner Bretton James (Josh Brolin), of Churchill Schwartz. His job on the line and his mentor out of the picture, Jake discovers that Gordon Gekko is out promoting his new book "Is Greed Good?" and decides to attend a lecture being given by the author at Fordham University. According to Gekko, greed is now sanctioned by the government, and the U.S. economy is on the verge of collapse as a direct result of leveraged debt and wild conjecture. When Jake goes behind Winnie's back to try and repair her relationship with her father, Gekko reveals his compelling theories on the likely reasons for Zabel's downfall. Later, as Jake begins plotting to avenge his mentor, Gekko starts to reveal his true colors.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Perry Seibert
Like the economic bubbles that are discussed throughout it, Oliver Stone's Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps seems like it's going to have a huge payoff, but bursts before that happens. As the film opens, Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas) walks out of prison, and finds nobody there to pick him up. We're then introduced to Jake Moore (Shia LaBeouf), a young and hungry financier convinced that green technology is the next big thing. However, after fellow financial whiz Bretton James (Josh Brolin) destroys the firm Jake works for -- and in turn Jake's mentor, Louis Zabel (Frank Langella) -- the now revenge-driven junior executive meets Gordon, who is speaking at a local university about the evils of the current financial climate. Complicating matters is the fact that Gordon's estranged daughter, Winnie (Carey Mulligan), and Jake are engaged. Gordon wants back in her life, and offers to trade Jake tips on how to get back at Bretton in exchange for access to his daughter. While Gordon's dealings with Jake appear to be on the level, Winnie continues to insist she wants nothing to do with her father -- concerns that seem justified as Gordon begins manipulating Jake into getting him access to Winnie's 100-million-dollar trust fund. Say this for the movie, much of it is fun. As a pulpy drama set in the very recent past, Money Never Sleeps feels perfectly timed to capitalize on our current economic troubles for the same reason that Dallas became a smash TV show during a protracted recession in the '70s -- regular people want to live vicariously through rich and powerful people's lives, but still be assured that the movers and shakers are amoral a-holes. And if the screenplay didn't soften that blow in the final act, you get the sense that Stone would have had his first culturally impactful work since JFK. The director is in full command of his material and his skills for the first time in over a decade, effortlessly throwing out stylish -- if not exactly necessary -- split screens and special effects. He seems artistically alive, and an engaged Oliver Stone is a very good thing for movies in general. He gets good work from his actors as well. Once LaBeouf lays off the overly thick New York accent he starts the movie with, you can see why Stone was drawn to cast him as an ambitious but honest hero who slowly gets sucked into a world of corruption. Michael Douglas slips back into Gordon Gekko's skin like it's a favorite power suit, and while he comes awful close to chewing on the scenery, Stone keeps things at such an elevated emotional pitch that Gordon's flowery monologues never feel out of place. And in the scene that requires the most from him as an actor -- Gordon's heart-wrenching attempt to explain himself to his grown daughter -- Douglas is flawless, never letting us know for sure if this antihero's confessions are heartfelt, or just another ploy to get the best deal. It doesn't hurt that he gets to play the scene with Mulligan, an actress talented enough to convince us of both Winnie's emotional vulnerability and the steely resolve she no doubt inherited from her dad. In films like Salvador, Platoon, and Born on the Fourth of July, Stone expertly tapped into righteous anger -- both his own and the public's -- in order to feed his effective, if often overwrought, style and themes. The best aspect of Money Never Sleeps is its lightness; he's still angry, but he's having some fun, much like he did throughout the paranoid fever dream that was JFK. Where it disappoints is the shift in the third act from fun to soft. If he'd dropped the film's closing 20 minutes, he would have improved a great deal on the original Wall Street. As it is, though, this new Wall Street is his best film in over a decade, but it's hard to shake the sneaking suspicion that Stone -- like his most famous character -- is mellowing. If that's true, he's going to have to look to something other than anger for inspiration.

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Product Details

Release Date:
12/21/2010
UPC:
0024543698081
Original Release:
2010
Rating:
PG13
Source:
20th Century Fox
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[DTS 5.1-Channel Surround Sound, Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Time:
2:13:00
Sales rank:
32,648

Special Features

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps in High Definition; Audio Commentary by Director Oliver Stone; A Conversation with Oliver Stone and the Cast of Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps; Money, Money, Money: The Rise and Fall of Wall Street; Deleted and Extended Scenes with Optional Commentary by Oliver Stone; Fox Movie Channel presents In Character With... Michael Douglas, Shia LaBeouf, Carey Mulligan, Josh Brolin and Frank Langelia

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Michael Douglas Gordon Gekko
Shia LaBeouf Jake Moore
Frank Langella Louis Zabel
Carey Mulligan Winnie Gekko
Josh Brolin Bretton James
Susan Sarandon Jake' Mother
Eli Wallach Jules Steinhardt
Austin Pendleton Dr. Masters
John Bedford Lloyd Treasury Secretary
Vanessa Ferlito Audrey
John Buffalo Mailer Robby
Jason Clarke New York Fed Chief
Christian Baha Hedge Fund Chief
Maria Bartiromo News Host
Waltrudis Buck Zabel's Secretary
Alice Burla 13 Year Old Pianist
Anthony Cochrane Shoe Salesman, London
Frank Cornei Gekko's Landlord
Michael Genet James' Butler
Richard Green Boxer
Limor Hakim Rumor Spreading Executive at Window
Edward Henzel Rumor Spreading Executive
Sondra James Lady at Book Signing
Harry Kerrigan Prison Guard
Nan Lu Chinese Executive
Edmund Lyndeck Patient
Tom Mardirosian District Attorney
Sylvia Miles Realtor
Manu Narayan Quant Analyst
Annika Pergament Reporter
Annie McEnroe Pressman Woman at Birthday
Eric Purcell Jeweler
Eliyas Qureshi Cabbie
Dieter Riesle Swiss Bank Official
Nouriel Roubini Economist on TV
Oliver Stone Investor
Richard Stratton Prison Cage Guard
Faye Wattleton Professor at Fordham
Catherine Wolf Zabel's Wife
Thomas Belesis Zabel Trader
Darin Guerrasio Zabel Trader
Greg Hildreth Zabel Trader
George Steven Blumenthal Bank President
Emmett Fitzsimmons Bank President
Madison Mason Bank President
Michael Cumpsty Churchill Schwartz Partner
Jean Pigozzi Churchill Schwartz Partner
Natalie Morales Churchill Schwartz Trader
Olaf Rogge Churchill Schwartz Partner
Carrie Lee Reuters Reporter
Rhonda Schaffler Reuters Reporter
Eloise DeJoria Woman #1 at Party
Coralie C. Paul Woman #2 at Party
Sean Stone Hedge Fund Trader #1
Peter Antico Hedge Fund Trader #2
Mark Gray Hedge Fund Trader #3
Richard Crawford London Barber
Paul Grunert London Barber
Roy Insana TV Analyst
Andrew Serwer TV Analyst
Vincent Farrell TV Analyst
Anthony Scaramucci Panelist on TV
Ali Velshi Panelist on TV
Jim Cramer Newscaster
Becky Quick Newscaster
David Faber Newscaster
Melissa Lee Newscaster
Larry Kudlow Newscaster
Carl Quintanilla Newscaster
Sue Herera Newscaster
Ed Bergtold Trader at Urinal
Tim Wilson Trader at Urinal
Mike DiGiacinto Trader at Urinal
Kevin Keels Trader at Urinal
Ben Nisman Trader at Urinal
Laura Dawn Winnie's Office Co-Worker
Amber Dixon Brenner Winnie's Office Co-Worker
Curzon Dobell London Tailor
Leonard Logsdail London Tailor
Warren Buffett Himself
Melissa Francis Herself
Sunil Hirani Himself
Joe Kernan Himself
Thomas M. Joyce Himself
Graydon Carter Himself
James Chanos Himself
Steve Liesman Himself

Technical Credits
Oliver Stone Director
Matiki Anoff Makeup
Craig Armstrong Score Composer
David Brenner Editor
Alessandro Camon Executive Producer
Kathleen Chopin Casting
Celia Costas Executive Producer
Sarah Halley Finn Casting
Leslie Fuller Makeup
Adrian Grunberg Asst. Director
Paul D. Kelly Art Director
Eric Kopeloff Producer
Susan Reilly Lehane Makeup
Stuart Levy Editor
Allan Loeb Screenwriter
Tod A. Maitland Sound Mixer
Ellen Mirojnick Costumes/Costume Designer
Julie Monroe Editor
Edward R. Pressman Producer
Rodrigo Prieto Cinematographer
Stephen Schiff Screenwriter
Alex Young Executive Producer
Kristi Zea Production Designer

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