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October 4, 2010 | by  | in Film |
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Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps
Director: Oliver Stone
With Josh Brolin, Carey Mulligan, Shia LaBouf and Michael Douglas

Oliver Stone was responsible for some of the great Hollywood films of a large portion of the ‘80s and ‘90s; Platoon, The Doors, Natural Born Killers. Hell, the man wrote Scarface. But the last decade saw somewhat of a loss in mojo for the legend (Alexander, anybody?), leaving the prospect of Stone returning to his roots with a sequel to his 1987 hit Wall Street, both promising and a little frightening. Would it mark a glorious return to form? Or would Stone cock it up?

Well, it certainly isn’t a cock-up. Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps is, for the most part, a very decent follow-up. Set against the turbulent backdrop of 2008’s financial crisis, Money Never Sleeps follows the same playbook as its predecessor; quick and talky—backed with the finesse of a polished Hollywood studio picture. As with the original, you don’t need to know trading and stocks to get into the drama. Everyone should be familiar with the back-stabbing and hungry plotting present here. The casting is excellent too; Josh Brolin is suitably slimy, Carey Mulligan is perfect as the button-cute, dimple-faced moral compass, and I’ll just come right out and say it: Shia LaBeouf is well on his way to becoming a bonafide actor. Once he outgrows his pre-typecast role of that precocious, fast-talking youngster, we can expect big things—some of which are on display here. And then there’s Douglas—clearly having a blast returning to his iconic Gekko.

But while this film shows Stone still has significant directing prowess, one thing this sequel lacks is bite. The film trips itself up on its final act—by thawing Gekko’s heart, Stone dries up a lot of the film’s edge and sucks out Gekko’s essence in the process. This is probably his intention—that moral Hollywood ending—but it definitely proves that the man who once wrote the infamous Scarface chainsaw scene has, indeed, gone a little soft. But for fans of the original, there is plenty to enjoy—even a cheeky cameo from Charlie Sheen (though it seems he is playing his character from Two and a Half Men as opposed to Bud Fox). So, in short, yes, greed is, for the most part, still pretty good.

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  1. Sam says:

    As a huge fan of the first wall street, including it’s word for word cameo apperance in ‘the boiler room’, I can only hope that the sequal will be as good as the original.

    I have not been a fan of Shia LaBeouf since Speilburg and Lucas cast him in indana jones 4 and called him mutt (was that a joke?) but I do to put him up there with other young talented actors such as Leonardo deCaprio, Matt Damon and Giovanni Ribisi.

    Stone is one of the greatest directors of all times (along with Scorsese, Lucas, Speilburg and Cameron) and no doubt that Natural Born Killers is one of his best peices of work. I’m hoping that he will be able to pull off this ‘money rules the world’ peice so we can go on to say greed is great.

  2. smackdown says:

    merry christmas to all and to all a good FRIGHT!


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