While waiting for the Oscars, I decided to look at my burgeoning Netflix queue and find something to kill the time while I do some housework and get ready for the Oscars (You can read about it here). The movie I settled on was the classic 80s masterpiece Wall Street. The 20th Century Fox film stars Michael Douglas, Charlie Sheen, Daryl Hannah, Martin Sheen, and Terence Stamp. I must admit that I had been hesitant about watching this movie, although I’m not quite sure why. It’s a classic form of cinema, and it helped to sculpt the financial world as we see it today. In fact, according to this article, it’s even made Wall Street what it is today. So…it was time to make it my mission in life to see how good it actually is. Suffice it to say, it’s pretty good.
The movie starts with junior stockbroker Bud Grant (Charlie Sheen) struggling to make a living and try to make it to the top. He spends a majority of his time trying to get involved with his idol Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas), while trying to be an honest man like his father Carl (Martin Sheen). Carl’s a blue collar worker for Bluestar Airlines, a small company with big goals. After lots of wrangling, Bud manages to get a meeting with Gekko, and the first go around isn’t the greatest in the world…in fact, it’s safe to say it was on the verge of failing miserably. All of that changed when he realized that his father had given him inside information. This led to the beginning of a partnership between the two…for good and for ill.
This movie just had splendid acting from all members. The scenes with Michael Douglas and Charlie Sheen are splendid, whereas the scenes with father Sheen and his son were great as well. They times Daryl Hannah was on screen was definitely worth paying attention to, while Terence Stamp tends to play the heroic foil whenever he steps on the scene. In fact, it’s pretty awesome to see how his presence even trumps the greatness that Michael Douglas has.
The movie is directed by Oliver Stone, and he’s at his level best in this movie. The way he frames his scenes are just fantastic. There are certain scenes where they’re standing in front of a window, but he casts shadows on him to set the mood for the scene itself. The score is by Stewart Copeland, and it’s fairly unmemorable, what with its incredible synthesized beats.
I’m really disappointed in myself. I wish I would’ve seen this sooner. I definitely enjoyed watching Michael Douglas in what would become his most memorable role, and seeing Charlie Sheen go toe to toe with him was fun as well. Everyone had a part to play, and they played it well. This movie warrants four More Epic than Love Jones, and it was a fantastic two hours. The only reason it doesn’t hit all five is because the look really doesn’t stand the test of time. The story is top notch, though. In this case, greed really is good.