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Wall Street is one of those great films that not only work as a
but in the process highlight a segment of society and history that
very hard to get a grip on and at the same is the emblem of an era.
Wall Street deals with the Wall Street raider, investment banker and hustler Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas) and his aspiring acolyte, Bud Fox (Charlie Sheen). The characters are very loosely based on real-life Wall Street raider Ivan Boesky and his young gofer, Dennis Levine. "If you want a friend, get a dog" is straight out Michael Lewis's Liar's Poker ("If you want loyalty, buy a cocker spaniel.").
The movie is not only a beautiful marking of an era, it is also highly prophetic. Produced in 1986/87 (Bud's computer shows 1985), it impossible not to see in Bud's demise, the demise of the stockmarket in October 1987, the biggest crash since 1929, the year that ushered in the Great Depression.
Also prophetic is Gordon's ranting about technology (consumer technology) being the wave of the future - we haven't even recovered from the internet/pc boom yet, that followed in the mid to late nineties. By today's standards, the wireless phone Gordon is using on the beach looks the size of a car battery. Which is a nice to see too.
Check out Tamara Tuney as the secretary - she only recently resurfaced in a more prominent role as "Alberta Green" in "24", not looking a day older.
Half the time, I have absolutely no idea what the characters in "Wall
Street" are talking about. The good thing is that I don't have to in order
to understand this movie. I hope not. Bonds, stocks, withdrawals, savings
accounts, points, credit cards, whatever
it all boils down to common human
emotions people can relate to.
Charlie Sheen plays Bud Fox, a young, eager stockbroker looking for a lucky break in his unsatisfying career. It is clear that the man has plenty of motivation as he constantly calls up one of the stock market gods, Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas), hoping to get his foot in the door. He finally succeeds and gets a meeting with Gekko on his birthday when he shows up with a box of Cuban cigars for a gift. He tries real hard to impress Gekko in their brief meeting, but is mostly unsuccessful. That is until he uses some inside information on an airline he got from his dad (Martin Sheen- real life dad too. Isn't that ironic) who happens to work there. His tip for Gekko is a good one, but it is also an illegal one. It impresses Gekko who decides to get Fox involved and really teach him about the stuff on the inside.
I don't know what it is with their names, but they're a little bit too suggestive. Bud is as smart as a Fox and he finds ways to outwit people. Sheen is not as good here as in Platoon where his "average guy" presence was more effective. He needs to show more emotion and surprise here. He does redeem himself with better scenes near the end of the movie. Douglas almost looks like a lizard with his slick hair and slim face. Of course, he acts like one too. And the Oscar speaks of his performance. I guess those names are pretty cool. Terence Stamp has one of the coolest names in real life and he plays Gekko's rival in "Wall Street." I really like this guy. He has this fearlessly cold look on his face, whoever he's playing. I would never mess with him. Then there's Daryl Hannah who plays a personal decorator and Fox's girlfriend. I don't know why this character is in this movie. She has a very pointless and meaningless role and Hannah plays it in an extremely artificial and awkward way. I guess she reflects Gekko and his greed in a more subtle way that eventually sneaks up on Fox.
Of course Oliver Stone does a great job directing this film. When the stock market first opens in the movie and Fox picks up the phone, the tone immediately changes. Everyone goes into panic mode including the cameras. I never understood how this works. How can these people handle three hundred phone calls, voices, and their computer screens or notes all at the same time? I can almost understand the office brokers' jobs, but what is going on down on the trading floor? What are they doing? Betting? Millions of people are bidding on something and this one guy writes it down on a tiny little piece of paper. Does he know what he's doing? Does he write down the name of the guy who bought the shares? I don't know and the movie certainly doesn't explain. That's not what it's about.
Simply put, "Wall Street" is about greed and the destruction of everything that's weaker in order to gain wealth or power. Douglas embodies that in his performance as Gekko. Fox learns about it through the experience. "Wall Street" is actually similar to "American Psycho," another movie about the excess of the eighties. Obviously, "American Psycho" chooses to show that the businessmen of those days were literally getting away with murder. "Wall Street" is a very good film, although sometimes it is too confusing with its lingo. I guess that makes it good on two levels. The plot is universal enough for everyone to enjoy, but it also has a level that Donald Trump can enjoy (I don't think he really does this stuff though). I haven't seen "Boiler Room," but I would be willing to bet that "Wall Street" is probably a better movie. It should be seen at least for the performance Michael Douglas puts in. I give it an 8 out of 10. By the way, Gordon, Gekko, God, Greed, and Grand all start with "G's." Coincidence?
In my opinion the best movie that I have ever seen. I've watched it at least 100 times and the numerous extremely intense scenes are each in themselves classics rivaled by no other movie to date. No actor or actress has performed such a completely perfect, intensely precise portrayal of a movie character than Michael Douglas does in this film. The best acting effort I have ever seen by any actor in any movie. Also Charlie Sheen's best performance of his career. My favorite movie of all time with not even a close second place.
Michael Douglas and Charlie Sheen are at their best. Martin Sheen is his
usual cool self. This movie is an excellent portrayal of what made the
Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas) is a ruthless multi-millionaire financial tycoon who calls on a young aspiring stock broker, Bud Fox (Charlie Sheen), to help him obtain illegal inside corporate information. Fox gets caught up in all the hundreds of thousands of dollars flowing in his direction and he loses sight of the more important things in life. Only when Gekko tries to ruin Fox's father's (Martin Sheen) employer, a commercial airline, does he see the error in his ways.
Daryl Hannah plays Darien Taylor, a neo interior decorator with a nose for the big bucks. She falls for Fox as the money rolls in. There's not a lot of bad things to say about this movie, except that Hannah is terribly miscast. It's still a must-see movie for anyone who lived in the 80's or is interested in finance.
I gave it 8 out of 10.
One of my all-time favorites. The entire film embodies great filmaking.
the elements are here for complete audience enrapture.
Young and eager Bud Fox(Charlie Sheen) wants to make his mark on Wall St. Wealth and ego's abound and Bud can't get enough. His proletariate father(real life father Martin Sheen) cannot sway his son from the temptations of involvement with the ultimate aphrodisiacs...power and money! Fox is introduced to both by the ultimate purveyor of power, greed, money, and excess...Gordon Gekko(Michael Douglas).Douglas' performance is way over the top here, enough so he won an Academy Award for his portrayal of the erstwhile corporate raider of raiders!
At one point while addressing the stockholders of fictional Teldar Paper, Gekko tells them "greed is good, greed is right" and then tells them greed will cure that other malfunctioning corporation called the United States of America.
Watch with amazment the slippery slope of ethics that Fox travels, the duality of intent, and the twists and turns as he begins to wonder who he really is.
This movie will hold your interest and if you are a fan of men's clothing, as I am, you'll revel in the great threads worn by the powerbrokers. Quick note on style: shortly after the movie came out men were rushing to their clothing stores to find the "horizontal striped" shirt Gekko wears in a scene from the famous NY restaurant 21. I am proud to say I found it and still have it in my closet!
This is such a good movie, I want to see it again. Michael Douglas is so
good in this film I can see why he won an academy award.
Michael Douglas's performance in "Wall Street made me realize that each role he can turn it in to gold. I couldn't believe his performance as Gordon Gekko was regarded as one of the best of his career now I understand.
I must give credit to Charlie Sheen for his part of making "Wall Street" a success." This movie was not only his breakthrough film of his career, but the best one to date.
Rounding out the phenomenal cast is Sheen's father, Martin. Martin adds so much credibility to this movie it would take so much time describe what he does. Let's just say Martin Sheen almost steals the thunder from Michael Douglas and his son.
After watching awful movies such as "Boiler Room" and "Glengarry Glen Ross," I didn't want to watch "Wall Street." I was surprised to find that this film turned out to have a different plot than the two awful movies. This was not only rich in plot, but in casting, direction and writing. This truly is a good film.
This film is one of the greatest in history. Michael Douglas won an Oscar for his role, Gordon Gekko, as a ruthless corporate invader that leaves everyone wishing to live in Gekko's shoes. Many people have been written as going into finance from watching this film.
This was an excellent film which stars two of the finest actor in hollywood.
Charles Sheen gives a great intence performance and he looks very good,
considering his age he gives one hell of a performance. Michael Douglas
gives a fine performance as usual in one of the greatest characters out
there, Douglas was a perfect casted in the role.
Both the parts of Sheen and Douglas was great written characters and you`ll enjoy their dialogue tremendesly throughout the film. This is what makes the film an excellent one. The performance from Martin Sheen is also great and gives the story extra spice.
The characters and their dialogue elevate this film and makes it one of the best dramatic films ever.
This film drew an amusing and somewhat accurate picture of Wall Street.
And it provided numerous lessons in finance for the average layman. For
those who could filter out the exagerrated left wing bias, the film was
stimulating and informative. But those who are easily disgusted by the
wing's opinionated and hypocritical 80s bashing might think otherwise.
Oliver Stone may have a talent for mediocre dialogue writing (see
but his direction and storywriting is far too paranoid and distorting
Nixon, Born on the Fourth of July).
Michael Douglas' best actor oscar for this film was deserved, he was the center of the movie and delivered its most memorable and informative lines ("Most of these Harvard MBA types don't add up to dog s***", "The richest 1 percent of our country owns half our country's wealth"). And Terence Stamp (whose Larry Wildman character strangely enough resembles Alejandro Sosa from Scarface)gave a good though brief supporting performance. Charlie Sheen meant well, but he lacks the character and force to convince most audiences. He presented the naivety of Bud Fox well enough, but couldn't provide much more. And Poor Daryl Hannah, who has received such massive ridiculing from this film (including a Razzie Award for Worst Supporting Actress)that I won't subject her to any more of it.
This film probably wouldve been better with a different director and the absence of several cast members (i.e. Martin Sheen as the hammer and sickle waving union buff), but the music, locations, and mood were right on. I love action movies and lighthearted comedies, but Wall Street certainly didn't put me to sleep. It was certainly the best film of 1987, and I recommend seeing it. Often shown on network television, and available at all video stores and many libraries.
Bud Fox (Charlie Sheen) is a hungry young stockbroker caught between two moral worlds: the old-fashioned morality of his blue collar upbringing and the amoral world of Wall Street. Greed wins out when Fox orchestrates a meeting with his idol, Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas), one of the savviest and biggest players in the business. Soon, Fox has become Gekko's protege, and is making big money for both himself and Gekko, through illegal insider trading. But Fox's world crumbles when he learns that Gekko has double-crossed him, and is planning to cannibalize Blue Star Airlines, a company that Fox's dad (Martin Sheen) helped build from the ground up. In revenge, Fox manipulates a trade that causes Gekko to lose millions, then manipulates the sale of Blue Star to Gekko's arch nemesis (played by Terence Stamp). The SEC catches up with Fox, and he is arrested for insider trading. But he's determined to take Gekko with him, and he assists regulators by wearing a wire to a meeting with Gekko in Central Park. The price for Fox's greed is jail time, but in the end he has regained his morality and his humanity. Great performances by the cast (Michael Douglas won Best Actor for his role). A powerful film about a high stakes game. Highly recommended.
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