The Wolf of Wall Street outlines the true story of the meteoric rise and subsequent fall of Jordan Belfort, (Leonardo DiCaprio) a wall street investor who used shady business tactics and entrepreneurial flare to ascend the ranks of Wall Street. The film is replete with a vibrant energy manifesting itself in seemingly every aspect of the movie. The visual style is vivid and colorful and the performance of the actors, particularly DiCaprio, is thoroughly engaging. DiCaprio contributes a powerful performance ripe with the ruthless ambition and greed you would expect of a Wall Street tycoon. His many monologues in the film are so captivating that I felt transported to the office where he addressed his workers. Director Martin Scorsese masterfully crafts a character that you love and hate at the same time. You laugh along with him during his many acts of debauchery but are disgusted by the excessive manner in which he lives and the corruption that envelops his character like Dracula’s cape.
In addition to being a compelling film, its also gut-wrenchingly hilarious. The drug riddled antics of Belfort and his cronies provide for some hilarious moments and set pieces. The supporting actors deliver performances that in any other movie would steal the show. Jonah Hill displays his range, picking up an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor and Kyle Chandler provides the perfect foil as a FBI agent to DiCaprio’s overwhelming energy. The movie itself is three hours long but unlike some longer movies (any Peter Jackson blockbuster), I left the theater wishing it was longer. The movie is engaging, vibrant and just straight up fun. If you are looking for a distraction from boredom, spend some time with Jordan Belfort because his life is far more interesting than most.
I would recommend that you do not see it with your parents as this movie really does earn its “R” rating through overt sexuality, constant usage of drugs and language that would make even the most irate sailor blush.
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