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MARGIN CALL (the movie) tells the truth...

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MARGIN CALL (the movie) tells the truth...

About how banksters think and behave

========================================

 

margin-call-movie-poster-1020674056.jpg

 

A thriller that revolves around the key people at a investment bank over a 24-hour period during the early stages of the financial crisis.

 

Director: J.C. Chandor

Writer: J.C. Chandor

Stars:

Zachary Quinto, Stanley Tucci and Kevin Spacey

The Film was on a low budget - and shot in only 17 days!

 

 

I saw the film this weekend, and I was impressed.

Not only by the cast, and the tight drama it presented.

The film shows the reality of how people in the financial sector think and behave

 

The percentage of Psychopaths* in the general population is about 1%.

It is higher than that on Wall Street and in the City of London.

 

But even the "good people" in this film are corrupted by the money they can earn.

They do what they believe may be morally wrong, because the incentives are so very large.

 

I loved the scene with the excellent Stanley Tucci sitting on the steps, and remembering:

 

"I was an engineer once. I built a bridge..."

He then shows an amazing facility in mental arithmetic as he works out how many people bridge helped. And he seems to realise that nothing he has done at the Wall Street firm that he has worked for for years has had anything like the positive impact of building the bridge.

 

His ex-colleagues are trying to get him to come back to the firm FOR JUST ONE DAY. If you see the film, you will find out why, and what his decision is.

 

THE REWARDS are just too big, and too easily given - especially when you realise that for every dollar paid, there has been damage and losses on the other side.

 

Zachary Quinto talks about how the film came together:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a8WrlBHTCrs

 

Paul Bethanny:

"The tragedy of the movie... these incredibly creative minds, channelled into this biz-ness."

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"There are three ways to make a living in this business:

Be first, be smarter, or cheat."

 

Which way would you choose ?

 

Or do you prefer a business model that offers different choices?

=== ===

 

Here's a cast interview

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N1MMv_beDOw

 

Tucci: "Where is the accountability... It is very ambiguous."

 

J.Irons: "I saw him as a Gambler-in-trouble."

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AMEK1XH6xgA

 

(Kevin Spacey responds well to some stupid questions.)

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Paul Bethanny:

"The tragedy of the movie... these incredibly creative minds, channelled into this biz-ness."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ci0Rqkow_KQ

 

In the middle of this clip, JC Chandor says more about the wasted talent.

 

Another interview with the writer/director:

"John Tuld" - the name anyway - was a combination of:

John Thane from Merrill Lynch, and Dick Fuld of Lehman Brothers.

 

Here's a good discussion of the message of the film, from October 2011:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9HJ8nCRsDLo

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Many thanks for your review,

Looks good. Im not sure its out over here in the UK yet. Iv not seen it??? anyone know if its over here?

ill keep a look out for the DVD.

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Many thanks for your review,

Looks good. Im not sure its out over here in the UK yet. Iv not seen it??? anyone know if its over here?

ill keep a look out for the DVD.

The film is in Hong Kong now, so I reckon it has made it to the UK.

The dialog is the quality of a good play. The acting is superb.

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I've seen zero publicity for this over here and it's not on at any local cinema. Which is unfortunate because this sounds very good. Has anyone else in the UK seen or heard anything about this film?

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I've seen zero publicity for this over here and it's not on at any local cinema. Which is unfortunate because this sounds very good. Has anyone else in the UK seen or heard anything about this film?

Maybe seen a note to Kevin Spacey...?

He is one of the stars, and lives in the UK.

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THE REWARDS are just too big, and too easily given - especially when you realise that for every dollar paid, there has been damage and losses on the other side.

 

Paul Bethanny:

"The tragedy of the movie... these incredibly creative minds, channelled into this biz-ness."

Both of which are points that I was trying to make when I was talking recently about the rise in trading in the world currently.

 

Too many brilliant creative minds are spending their time working out who to gamble better and for every winning trade the other side loses. Trading is IMO a soul destroying occupation, surely there is better things that can be done with our time on earth (money isn't everything).

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Too many brilliant creative minds are spending their time working out who to gamble better and for every winning trade the other side loses. Trading is IMO a soul destroying occupation, surely there is better things that can be done with our time on earth (money isn't everything).

Some think:

IF WE GROW BIG AND RICH ENOUGH then we can sort out our problems.

 

But the very process of growth is a big part of the problem.

The contrary is true: If we get smaller in a thoughtful way, we get stronger, and life becomes more sustainable.

 

It will be a hard concept for some to grasp since it goes against the accepted growth paradigm.

 

Even so: The film did a good job of humanizing the bankers. Only one of them was a pure psychopath (Simon Baker), with a touch of charm. The others were simply accepting the system as it was, and trying to grab the benefits that it provided. And some regretted the tough choices that they felt compelled to make.

 

There are times when finance is NOT A ZERO SUM GAME. But unfortunately with the collateralised mortgage product, the loans themselves were mostly bad for everyone:

 

+ The homes were purchased at high prices (thanks to the surfeit of credit).

+ The borrowers could not afford to pay them back, especially when the cheap initial period ended

+ The packaged loans were therefore "toxic", and highly likely to bring losses for the investors

 

The only beneficiaries, were the banks packaging them, and many of them got "hit" too, because they were still holding plenty of inventory "when the music stopped."

 

(Oh, I forgot one: The rating agents benefited from high fees from slapping on unwarranted triple A ratings. So far, they only lost their reputation, and rating agencies did not go bust, nor did there senior executives go to jail. These were some of the real evil folks in the story IMHO - along with the paid-off politicians, who deserve a special place, if there is a Hall-of-Shame.)

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Line in the Film:

"Those people out there have no idea what is coming."

 

(Do you wonder what will happen when they wake up?)

 

Occupy Wall Street takes on the housing crisis

 

By Les Christie@CNNMoney .. Dec. 5, 2011

 

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Occupy Wall Street and other housing activists are heading to neighborhoods hit hard by foreclosure Tuesday to protest the mistreatment of homeowners by mortgage lenders.

 

Occupy Our Homes said it has scheduled a day of protests for Dec. 6, with events scheduled in 25 cities, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and other cities.

 

foreclosed-tent.gi.top.jpg

 

Among the actions expected to occur is so-called foreclosure defense, where protestors try to stop police from evicting residents of homes that are being foreclosed upon. Protestors also plan to occupy homes that have already been foreclosed on and currently lie vacant.

 

"The Occupy Wall Street movement and brave homeowners around the country are coming together to say, 'Enough is enough,'" said an Occupy Our Homes press release. "We, the 99%, are standing up to Wall Street banks and demanding they negotiate with homeowners instead of fraudulently foreclosing on them."

 

Protestors in New York are expected to march to Brooklyn's East New York neighborhood, an area that has been hit hard by foreclosure. The demonstration, which will be led by New York Communities for Change (NYCC), will end with the protestors occupying a foreclosed home that has been vacant for several years.

 

Occupy Our Homes is charging that the big banks made billions of dollars off of the housing bubble by designing predatory loans that included balloon payments, variable rates and other features that would yield short-term profits from families that were least capable of paying.

 

/more: http://money.cnn.com/2011/12/05/real_estate/occupy_wall_street/

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I've seen zero publicity for this over here and it's not on at any local cinema. Which is unfortunate because this sounds very good. Has anyone else in the UK seen or heard anything about this film?

 

Many thanks for your review,

Looks good. Im not sure its out over here in the UK yet. Iv not seen it??? anyone know if its over here?

ill keep a look out for the DVD.

 

You can watch the film online on a website called www (dot) tvsearch (dot) co

 

Just search and it comes up. When you click the film it doesn't play, you need to try the links below the screen. I found link number 13 has the best picture, and I'll be watching it tomorrow....

 

Obviously if you like it you need to go and buy the DVD / watch it in the cinema

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I haven't seen publicity here (NZ) yet either - might be the 3million dollar budget so no mass marketing.

Looks REALLY good, thanks Dr.Bubb.

 

Gotta love the enigma that is Kevin Spacey.

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Tremendous film.

 

 

An allegory blueprint for the times we live in now; this movie was shot in just a handful of days, on a shoestring budget of $4m, yet extracts top performances from its AAA ensemble cast and manages to blow the likes of "Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps" clean out of the water.

 

 

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It's available on DVD now, I think. Considering buying it.

I think it just came out at the cinema in the UK on Friday 13th Jan, so "by gum" your camcorder-rippers are quick, Errol!. DVD available already at the local market?? :D

 

 

 

 

A great quote from Sam (Spacey's character):

 

For those of you who have never been through this before, this is what the beginning of a fire sale looks like. I don’t have to tell any of you that the first hour and a half is going to be very important.

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New Review...

 

For the reviews this week Moviejuice presenter Grant Lauchlan has been joined by Siobhan Synnot, journalist and film critic for Scotland on Sunday, and Glasgow-born movie screenwriter Sergio Casci.

 

 

Siobhan says during their discussion: “It’s a really surprising one. If someone said ‘would you like to go and see accounts for an hour and a half?’ I would have said ‘no no no’.

 

“But actually, this is the sort of movie Oliver Stone should have made with Wall Street 2."

 

Sergio adds: “The thing about it is that it’s not a financial movie, it’s a disaster film, and instead of having a great lump of space rock hurtling towards earth you’ve got a multimillion dollar financial collapse hurtling towards the earth.

 

“But either way you know it’s going to make a really big bang when it hits. That’s the genius of this film: they take something that is complex and quite dry, and they make it a good old-fashioned disaster movie.”

 

He also explained that the movie was made all the more terrifying because the characters were made believably human.

 

/more: http://entertainment.stv.tv/film/film-reviews/293809-margin-call-the-moviejuice-extended-review/

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TOO SOFT ?

 

Credit-Crunch Films Like Margin Call Are Far Too Soft on Wall Street's Robber Barons

 

The legendary French director Francois Truffaut once famously declared it impossible to make anti-war films because cinema inevitably makes war look glamorous. Having seen the timely credit-crunch drama Margin Call, which has just opened in Britain after a highly positive reception in the US, I fear the same can be said about Wall Street films.

 

A talk-heavy financial thriller spanning 24 crucial hours ...It makes a vague stab at unravelling some of the massive mathematical miscalculations behind the crash, and refuses to demonise individuals - which is fair enough, this is not a black and white moral issue.

 

Smart and bright and broadly sympathetic, the banker protagonists of Margin Call are not the overblown pantomime villains of Wall Street, American Psycho or The International. But Chandor goes further than cool-headed nuance and even-handed ambiguity. He also expects audience sympathy for his millionaire protagonists because their careers may be wrecked by an impending financial catastrophe they were complicit in causing. Some of these poor souls may walk away with only seven-figure pay-outs for bankrupting the global economy! Some of them, oh yes, even have sick puppy dogs to care for! What's that distant weeping sound? That's right, the plaintive tones of the world's smallest violin.

. . .

Tuld is not actually based on Prince, he is a transparent alias for notorious former Lehman Brothers CEO Richard Fuld, aka the "gorilla" of Wall Street. Fuld reportedly earned half a billion dollars during his ruinous tenure at Lehman, then complained publicly when former US treasury secretary Henry Paulson refused the company a life-saving tax-payer bail-out. Boo hoo!

 

Fuld has so far escaped the jail term that many Wall Street insiders were predicting, but former Lehman vice president Larry McDonald has accused his ex-boss of "gross negligence" while a court-appointed examiner concluded that Fuld and his firm gave "a materially misleading picture" of their shaky finances shortly before they collapsed

 

/more: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/stephen-dalton/margin-call-wall-street_b_1207673.html

 

Put the b@stids in jail, and let them admire their film images from a prison cell !

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Mr Spock's in it, I believe

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He is, he plays the rocket scientist that completes the puzzle - he works out that the securities are worthless.

 

QuintoSpock1.jpg

 

 

----

 

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1615147/quotes

 

John Tuld: So you think we might have put a few people out of business today. That its all for naught. You've been doing that everyday for almost forty years Sam. And if this is all for naught then so is everything out there. Its just money; its made up. Pieces of paper with pictures on it so we don't have to kill each other just to get something to eat. It's not wrong. And it's certainly no different today than its ever been. 1637, 1797, 1819, 37, 57, 84, 1901, 07, 29, 1937, 1974, 1987-Jesus, didn't that f**k up me up good-92, 97, 2000 and whatever we want to call this. It's all just the same thing over and over; we can't help ourselves. And you and I can't control it, or stop it, or even slow it. Or even ever-so-slightly alter it. We just react. And we make a lot money if we get it right. And we get left by the side of the side of the road if we get it wrong. And there have always been and there always will be the same percentage of winners and losers. Happy foxes and sad sacks. Fat cats and starving dogs in this world. Yeah, there may be more of us today than there's ever been. But the percentages-they stay exactly the same.

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