Top Four Financial Characters on Film

WALL STREET

 

Money makes the world goes ‘round. Isn’t that what they say? Well, I don’t know about the world, but it certainly helps in the movies. Hollywood is awash with money, with the latest blockbusters coasting hundreds of millions and raking in hundreds more, if not billions. And have you looked at the latest rates and bridging types that can pay for loans? But never mind behind the screen, what about those financial types on screen? Here are our top four financial characters for your viewing pleasure.

 

 

–       Wall Street, 1988

Any movie expert talking about finance is, of course, going to start with the nefarious Gordon Gekko, played expertly by Michael Douglas. This is a movie about liars, cheats, scandal and ruin, but most importantly: Greed. That’s the mantra here, and what we ourselves often think about those financial types: Greed is good. Greed is right. Greed is God.

–       It’s a Wonderful Life, 1946

To then move on to the exact opposite, let’s go for a golden oldie. It’s all about a Hollywood anomaly: a good financier. George Bailey, played by James Stewart, runs a community finance operation and helps out all the locals. It’s heart-warming and, for a moment, makes you forget the crashes, panics and distrust prevalent in most zeitgeist movies.

–       Other People’s Money, 1991

This one’s here to lighten the mood. It’s a comedy about a character called Lawrence “Larry the Liquidator” Garfield and the divide between the ‘real’ economy of goods and services and the ‘fake’ economy of wall street where guys make money out of making money. It’s got enough laughs to make it watchable, and yet the message is, at its core, quite a good one.

–       The Wolf of Wall Street, 2013

Leonardo DiCaprio, the greatest actor never to win an Oscar. And here he is, deservingly so, playing the corrupt, incredulous and utterly bizarre.  It’s a two hour long blitz of what it’s like to live, breath, eat and sleep money, and it ain’t pretty. DiCaprio is an expert in his field, and comes across as both a lunatic and somehow above the rest of us, like he’s onto something we can’t even begin to grasp at. Truly a masterpiece in financial movies, and yes, it did make a couple of people extraordinarily rich via its success. But that’s the way the world works, or, at least that’s how Hollywood works.

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