See the infographic above? Well this should be the posters rather than Leonardo DiCaprio’s face as this shows some of the crazy stuff that happens in this true story. If you believe in karma then it well and truly hit Jordan Belfort between the eyes, which interestingly in the film he takes all of this as a sign to finally give in and take responsibility for his crimes.
The Wolf of Wall Street is based on the book of the same name, which tells the real life tales of Jordan Belfort who conned people out of millions with penny sales on the stock market. He starts as a happily married man (married to How I Met Your Mother‘s mother Cristin Milioti) who moves to New York to get a job on Wall Street. He is taken under the wing by Mark Hannah (Matthew McConnaughey – Dallas Buyers Club) but once Jordan is qualified the market crashes and he is out of a job. Finding a job in penny stocks in Long Island Jordan soon becomes the star of the team and rakes in $70k a month. But when he meets his neighbour Donnie Azoff (Jonah Hill – Superbad, Moneyball) he decides to set up on his own and recruits a group of friends who he believes will give him the best team.
Starting with the big winners they bring in clients and gain their trust by making them lots of money, and not much themselves. With their clients faith in their hands they then convince them to part with thousands of their dollars to purchase what Jordan and his team claim to be the next big thing, leaving the team with pockets packed full of cash and their clients at a loss.
Throw in to the mix lots of prostitutes, a new wife (played by Margot Robbie – Pan Am) and A LOT of drugs. You get what you see in the infographic, crashing cars and helicopters, sinking yachts and the FBI on a mission to bring you down.
Martin Scorcese has done a brilliant job in bringing this book to life. I particularly like the Alfie style direct to camera biography style of Jordan telling us his life story himself, making it feel more honest and reminding us that this is based on the real wolf’s words. The film has received a lot of criticism and Leonardo DiCaprio has defended it (he spent a long time trying to get the book made into a film). As often happens, many people take the film literally, remember Natural Born Killers? Oliver Stone was trying to show how the media glamorises violence and instead people thought the film itself was glamorising violence. After several copy cat killers in America, the film joined the host of video nasties that were banned from general VHS release.
Oh and finally, who can forget DiCaprio’s break dancing?! Now this I need to see more of!
From the Oscar buzz films I’ve seen so far this is easily the best of the bunch.