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The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)
As Good As The Book
Besides watching hundreds upon hundreds of movies, I also pride myself on being a bibliophile and frequently have my nose buried in a large volume. A while back my grandpa told me there was this outrageous book he had just finished and he wanted me to read it. It sat on the coffee table for a couple years until last summer I decided to find out what the big deal was about. After devouring the 500 page book, I did a bit of online searching on the work after I heard that Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese were in talks to make it into a film.
To be completely honest, I don't think any director besides Scorsese could have done this work justice. Scorsese's style of voice-overs, excessive profanity, and brilliance when it comes to displaying outrageous and borderline insane protagonists turned the best book I've ever read into one the best films I've ever seen. It was so evident throughout the film how detail-oriented Scorsese and DiCaprio were when partnering together on this work. How neither of them won an Oscar for this movie, I'll never understand!!
A lot of people who are unfamiliar with Belfort's books (The Wolf of Wall Street and Catching The Wolf of Wall Street) don't realize how strictly Scorsese and the producers stuck to the books. Almost all the outrageous scenes from the midget tossing competition to the insanity of the boardroom to the legendary Quaalude fiasco to the smuggling cash overseas to Switzerland by taping bills to people's bodies are all in the books. One of my favorite parts of the film was at the very end in the "Sell Me This Pen" scene. Most people think that the guy who introduces DiCaprio to the stage is just some regular Joe Shmo but he's actually the real Jordan Belfort. I definitely let out an Ahh-Hahh when I saw that in theaters.
No review can do either the book or the film justice. It's definitely something you have to see or read to believe. Besides Scorsese and DiCaprio being a dream team, I think the casting was spot on when it came to picking the "merry band of brokers" (Jonah Hill, Rob Reiner, P.J Byrne) and of course the one-of-a-kind Duchess (Margot Robbie). Despite being a three hour film (which is short compared to how long it could've been based on the content of the books and A LOT of editing), it's one of those movies that flows so smoothly that you don't really notice that you've been sitting in the theater so long that your left leg has been asleep for the past 45 minutes. Basically, if you haven't seen this film, do yourself a favor and watch it. And if you have seen it, watch it again because it's just that awesome.