Margin Call – Movie Review

Margin Call‘, the directorial debut for director J.C. Chandor, is loosely based around the last 36 hours of the ill-fated Lehman Brothers investment bank. It features a stellar cast of Hollywood greats and rising stars – Kevin Spacey, Demi Moore, Paul Bettany, Jeremy Irons, Zachary Quinto, Stanley Tucci, Simon Baker, and Penn Badgley.

This is the Wall St movie to end all Wall St movies – a tale of utter incompetence set against a background of naked corporate greed and complete indifference to the inevitable consequences of their actions. Spacey is superb as the investment banking head – deeply conflicted but ultimately only troubled by the loss of a loved one, and Jeremy Irons plays a perfect Nero, fiddling while Rome burns. Margin Call is superbly scripted and the performances are very tightly wound – there’s no physical blood-letting although that wouldn’t have been a surprising outcome – in their pursuit of money these characters seem to be capable of almost anything. They make Gordon Gekko look like a street-corner con artist…

If you find the world of financial intrigue a turn-off then this may not be to your taste, but ultimately whether your interest lies in this area or not it’s a superb showcase for some incredible acting talent. Five out of five!