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Tom and Josh Sterling have a start-up dot-com. It's gone public to initial success. Josh is the technical genius. Tom is the fast-talking and abrasive CEO, in charge of the business side. It's August, 2001, less than a month before they can sell their shares and, perhaps, make lots of money. But the company is running out of cash, its main client is stalling, and share values are falling. For Tom to maintain the firm's appearance, he must find cash: investors could rescue him, but at a high cost of his potential wealth and company control. Tom goes to his brother for a loan. At the same time, an old flame, Sarrah, comes back to the city. Can Tom hold things together, bravura and all? Written by
Good storytelling can either tell you what happens, tell you how it was, or both. Most moviegoers, the superficial ones, watch a movie for the "what happens." They want to meet a character that they like and see something good happen to them with a good in between. And so when they watch a movie they expect a story and they like it or dislike it without considering everything that the movie is trying to do. Don't make that mistake when watching August.
August is a movie that tells a story, a "this is what happened to Tom and his company and his brother and his life", but that is not the REAL of this movie. This movie does a much better job of telling the movie watcher a "this is how it was" than a "this is what happens." So when you watch August, which i think you should, absorb the movie for the parts that elaborate on the environment, the time, place, and attitudes, surrounding August 2001, not just the story or the dialog or the sometimes lack thereof.
It's a movie that tells the story of two brothers that started a dotcom that survived the tech bubble collapse and its story in reality does the job of representing the not so apparent futures of the people left in the dotcom world after its demise.
What is even more enjoyable about the movie than its overall plot, which, like i said, isn't the real story, is Josh Hartnett's character, who not only represents the image of the dotcom-er CEO circa 1999 but also speaks the truly empty rhetoric of the times that feed and fueled the tech bubble for so long. Just listening to his speech and realizing that he's talking about practically nothing but making it sound like he's preaching the new age gospel, the evangelical oratory of the e-generation, in part, produces the statement the movie is trying to make about the times.
So don't watch this movie for the "story" or to "see what happens." Watch this movie with the understanding that its a movie that tries to capture a period in time: its character's and its subplots"/"devices" being either deeper (representing something/someone more generic), or being empty (just a way to kill time or build a character in a way that is unimportant to the "deeper meaning").
Enjoy the movie. Just be aware of what to look out for.
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