Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

Will Oliver Stone’s first directorial attempt at doing a sequel help to stop the downward spiral? This follow-up arrives over twenty years after the release of one of his most iconic films and has generated a lot of pre-release buzz. The trailers make the film look good and with current world financial events being what they are, the time is certainly right to revisit the “Greed is good” adage.   

The film starts well and the establishing shot, while being a complete rip off of the start of the Blues Brothers film is very funny. Michael Douglas’ illness and advancing age have done their part as well and he really looks the part of someone who has just spent the better part of two decades in jail.

What happens from this point on gets a bit fuzzy in recollection. There is something about Gekko’s estranged daughter (Carey Mulligan), his dead son and new boy Jake Moore (Shia LeBeouf). The plot revolves around a revenge scenario involving Moore going after Bretton James (Josh Brolin) who has destroyed his mentor Louis Zabel (Frank Langella) and his business. The energy towards this revenge is then oddly dissipated and never really addressed. This leaves the viewer with little to do.
Then in the film’s strangest and most disappointing twist, the story simply becomes a tale of the redemptive power of the family and ends with one of the clunkiest final scenes in recent memory. With so much obvious and hackney symbolism, it’s like Stone has completely lost faith in himself and his viewer’s ability to discern subtlety and nuance.  

Yes, this film is a mess and the final resolve disappointing but as a topic of heated debate for film lovers everywhere, it does provide a decent amount of canon fodder.
Rob Hudson

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