Mole: Making a movie about the economic crash of 2008 is as alluring as it is problematic. There is potential for great drama but it’s buried under mortgage rates, percentages, fractions and acronyms like CDOs, Synthetic CDOs, MBS….and have I lost you yet? Adam McKay knows that all that math talk works better than a tranquilizer dart, which is why he does his best to try and rouse you enough to care. Like a desperate social studies teacher trying to bring life to a boring subject he pulls out all the stops: he uses sex, humour, quick cuts, a toothsome cast and he breaks the fourth wall again and again. I’d say it works for maybe the first 30 minutes, but then I was waiting to care. The human drama didn’t come from Steve Carrell, Ryan Gosling, Brad Pitt or Christian Slater. As the doomsayers who know the end is nigh, Carrell and Gosling have the most ostentatious hair, Pitt and Slater are the eccentrics, but none of them is quite human enough.
Ratty: You know what I’m not interested in? The stories of rich white men who notice that richer white men are up to no good and maybe sort of try to stop that (or profit from it, was honestly hard to tell at times) and by the end of the movie they’re all in the same place: rich and white and men. There’s almost nothing to cheer for here. Attempts to make the protags seem human were paper thin. A glass eye, a dead brother, a picture of their kids on their desks (more than once for different characters). Just absurd. Also, I heard this was meant to make sense of it all but I still don’t understand what “shorting” is and it’s in the title of the f’n movie.
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