Sunday, 12 January 2014



Stock XXX-Change

179 Minutes. Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie, Kyle Chandler, Rob Reiner, Jon Favreau, Jean Dujardin, Joanna Lumley & Matthew McConaughey. Director: Martin Scorsese

Money, money, money. They say it's what makes the world go round, certainly the Hollywood movie one and surely that of it's leading man and best actor. An actor that has played anyone and everyone en route to being able to afford those Jack Nicholson courtside seats for the NBA's storied Kobe Bryant led Los Angeles Lakers franchise on a game to night basis. Wait...STOP! Not Leonardo DiCaprio. The same Leo Dicaprio that dedicates his down time into saving the environment and other philanthropic ventures like he invests his work one into capturing and creating complex characters in all their conflicted dark depths and inward insecurities. The same DiCaprio named after an artist that here we see getting wasted and high, while throwing money into a wastepaper basket like a basketball and flying helicopters into his front lawn like he was trying to cut the grass. With sex, drugs, cocks and money rolls on the cocktail menu there seems to be mo' money, mo' problems as the dollars and debauchery rings up. Now, just who could bring this reckless and arrogant side out of the reclusive and humble floppy haired kid from 'Titanic'? Only Martin Scorsese who follows the epic battle royale 'Gangs of New York', the anxiety inducing complexion of the grounding 'Aviator', the Boston legal drama of 'The Departed' and the hauntingly harrowing and horrifically bold, bleak and brilliant 'Shutter Island' as Marty and Leo collaborate on their fifth feature, proving their the perfect partnership to tell the story of Jordan Belfort and the madcap, moulah memoirs of 'The Wolf Of Wall Street' set to co- 'Boardwalk Empires' Terrence Winters sensational script. 

A stockbroker as bullish as they come in all his security fraud and corruption in the 1990's that saw his Stratton Oakmont company rob everybody in their homes as they where standing on the other line by the kitchen sink. As this Gordon Gekko and his 'Boiler Room' like team worked everyone over hard, that's when they partied the same too, to receipts that will split your sides to telephone bills with hookers on the line. Between all the booze, boobs and blow (in all forms of the word) however there's always going to be a hangover. Divorce, debt and of course cops as the FBI are hot on the tail of the man chasing exactly that. Sometimes all the money in the world can't stop the rain and this is what makes this success story so sobering. The dark side of the American dream is presented here in all it's trapping of wealth and greed. Part 'Wall Street' with a 'Greed is a Mother$#$#$#' moral to this story, part 'Boiler Room' boiling and simmering, perplexingly, proud passion, with 'Aviator' corrupting themes of human nature and the matters that madden the mind. Scorsese in the company of wolves has barely directed better with his pack leaving us hyena howling and this old dog has been in 'Casinos' and with 'Taxi Drivers' for his bag of tricks. The world highest financial and critical earning actor hasn't invested in much better either. Even if you thought 'Inception' was the mainstream making of this amazing actor with 'Catch Me If You Can', 'Blood Diamond', 'Basketball Diaries', 'Romeo + Juliet', 'What's Eating Gilberts Grape', and so many more savings in his account. Now following 365 days that saw him play it really bad but truly great for 'Django Unchained', while being the only one to really put a face to F. Scott Fitzgeralds 'The Great Gatsby' name this stars stock is rising even further and what better way to cap off his year then with this? Playing someone so cocksure of himself that he let's what his money can afford do the talking, this might be the best performance of his classic career that might finally see some Academy accreditation. Talking to the camera first-hand in first-person like Zach Morris, saved by the stock buzzer, between throwing peeled off bank rolls at federal agents and dwarfs at velcro targets, whilst giving 'Independence Day'/'Pacific Rim' stirring speeches of inspired corruption, you'd have to send the national guard to take this lone wolf of Hollywood out, because he 'aint going nowhere. 

In this dark comedy drama if you thought our lead in a three-piece and hair mould that only the slick Michael Douglas or Pat Riley of the eighties would be proud of is the only one that suits up here you forgot the rest of the tie. There's a new king of comedy on this hill and his name is Jonah. Still if you thought this 'Superbad' and '21 Jump Street' star was all about the one-liner gags then you forgot how much he has behind that expanding waistline of talent. After his 'Moneyball' Oscar strike Jonah Hill just maybe the best sidekick in this superhero movie world, let alone supporting actor around today. A seriously great talent, after backing up one of Hollywood's hottest leading men in Brad Pitt, he does it again for Leo behind some horn-rimmed glasses, curly hair and bleached teeth that could even blind David Schwimmer's Ross in 'Friends'. Movie new best best friend is about to show the industry just how much of a star soul-mate he is with the heart of his performances from the wrenching gut of laugh now, cry later amazing acting. If that wasn't enough than 'Super 8' exposed Kyle Chandler shows he was born to play people on the right, do-good side of the law, while Mad Max furious Rob Reiner is a true father figure of uneasy smiles and hard frowns, think a take no prisoners Uncle Phil off the 'Fresh Prince'. Need a princess? Than the beautiful Margot Robbie shows she's more than just a Barbie doll as Leo's latest on-screen lady. While there's even room for the figure of Jon Favreau and the slimmed down buddy of that guy named Earl (Ethan Suplee) to go along with a complex and classy cast that even features a true 'Artist' in Frenchmen Jean Dujardin who is breaking his sensational silence and about to become a monumental man and an 'Absolutely Fabulous' cameo from Joanna Lumley of all people. I mean this film really is crazy darling.

'Hmmm, hmm. Hmm, hmm.' Beat your chest to the tune of the best cameo you'll see all year however with Matthew McConaughey and the short but sensational, you wish he had more screen-time, scene stealing presence. After the legacy lasting 'The Lincoln Lawyer' made the case of passing the 'A Time To Kill'/'Amistad' acting bar and the quick buck of the ghost of rom-coms past, the divine drawl of the southern star has made a couple of years of 'Mud', 'Killer Joe's', 'Magic Mikes', 'Paperboys' and 'Dallas Buyers Clubs' the biggest and brilliant best of his changing career. Now the skinny of this muscle man in between slimming down for new roles and pairing alongside and partnering up with another vocally versatile actor in Woody Harrelson for T.V.'s raw and revealing 'True Detective', shows the industry on one spot of lunch debating money and masturbation how there needs to be a separate award category for classic cameos. You wish they had something more for a man who made this film something else. Still, you know how great this film is when one of the hottest, rising redemptive actors has to fight for screen-time with some of the other biggest names is the biz. That's just what DiCaprio and Scorsese films do together, just ask Alec Baldwin. This is one stock tip of stock dicks that everyone can appreciate. The hype of those exciting 'Black Skinhead' Kanye West and 'Hang You From The Heavens' Dead Weather laced trailers where justified in this buzz of bucks. The soundtrack to this movie is how money talks, but the real score is the underlying tone and teaching of corrupting power and sinful greed that is shouting out from underneath. Beneath all that weekend made pool partying that makes its way to work before the designated break time and believe it or not true stories is a lesson learned that's harder and more sobering than 9 to 5. A methodology that Marty and Leo perform for people so perfectly well that even their previous subjects find it hard to make the grade in comparison. With this gang of wall street agents shy of Staten Island showing the dearly debt departed real financial aviation, you'd have never thought these two or the millions watching would love a film where Popeye and his Spinach is used for some 'Pulp Fiction' in reverse eqsue, cocaine, life-saving motivation. This story and movie is just that random and crazy. Even ludes of drug-taking references to diseases that are just so wrong, somehow make it all right in the end. This is just what these three-hour, epic Marty/DiCaprio films find after all this time. It's this no-holes barred look of the worlds most powerful drug money and all the brutality and betrayal it brings that truly makes this films message pay off. The stock is hot and these millionaires soaring. Now that's a lot of bang for your buck. Buy, buy, buy! TIM DAVID HARVEY.

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