2010 / Oliver Stone > The subject matter of Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps is inherently filled with political biases. So, imagine my surprise when Stone’s exploration of the financial crisis was considerably more restrained than expected from a man who’s chums with Hugo Chavez.
The film is unapologetically glossy: Everything from the cab drivers to how the markets work are polarized caricatures, but thankfully, the “bad guys” are kept specific. It ends up being more of a discussion of how society is at fault for the mess than specific Wall Street gurus. But as respectable this approach may be from Stone, it’s simply not a good film. Too much sentimentality, too many easy character reversals. Motivations are missing, and we eventually stop caring because of the many plotlines. Worst of all, Carey Mulligan is wasted on a two-dimensional supporting role where she’s basically told to switch on a smile, and then switch off to a tear.