High Flying Bird

It has been a good long while since I received a Netflix movie early for a screening, not including the Mowgli one, as they played that in theaters for us. When I got a notification about it, I was excited, but I admit, I assumed it would have been Velvet Buzzsaw.

Instead it was for High Flying Bird, which I admit I would have probably ignored on description alone, if not for two reasons. First, obviously, I need to review it if they ask, so they can ask me to review more (makes sense!). And two, it was directed by Steven Soderbergh! As a general rule of thumb, I should watch everything that this man creates, as I will like or love them more often than not.

Now I do recall that he said before after doing Unsane that he will film all of his future movies with iPhones, or something to that regard, which did give me hesitation. It gives it a unique feel, that sort of fit with Unsane, but might not work for everything.

Fist
We will get to the issue of him doing a movie about race politics as a white dude, later.

Ray (André Holland), not Ray Ray, is sports manager/agent/pr man for namely basketball players, at a hard time to be an agent. Because there is an NBA lockout going on, and if most of their clients aren’t getting paid, then they aren’t getting paid. This isn’t great for job security, morale, or anything, and the lockout has been going on for months.

Ray’s newest client is Erick (Melvin Gregg), who was recently drafted number one overall! However, being drafted doesn’t mean shit. HE hasn’t received a paycheck yet, despite needing to move and figure out how to pay for bills and promises he didn’t expect to worry about. He is getting into trouble, and is in a weird spot with his own job. He has signed a contract, but it hasn’t been able to get processed. He has a team, but he really doesn’t have a team. Grey area can suck.

Ray wants to end the lock out, and decides on a strange plan, involving his unsigned yet signed talent. It is something that can put his own job, his player’s job, and a lot of people out of business. But is it crazy enough to work and get these men back to playing ball?

Also starring Zazie Beetz, Zachary Quinto, Sonja Sohn, Bill Duke, and Kyle MacLachlan.

dinner
This restaurant is so fancy, they even look whiter just by being in here.

Some of the topics in this movie deal with slavery, and how modern things can be attributed to past slavery notions in the USA. It also has a majority black cast, all done by a white director. It is however written by Tarell Alvin McCraney, who wrote Moonlight, and is clearly not white. It sounds to me like the idea for a story was met, and they just brought in a director who wanted to just do all of his filming with phones, let him do his directing/cinematography thing, while giving pretty important input that he couldn’t possibly fully understand.

And that is probably fine. A team of white people didn’t put this movie together. It is a story that is set in a realistic setting, with realistic people, circumstances, and realistic conclusions. It is sort of a fantasy in terms of how quickly it all concludes at the end, I honestly thought there would be at least 15 more minutes.

Overall, the film is under 90 minutes if we don’t include the credits, and has a lot more set up than the conclusion really deserves. It is rushed, and despite all of the set up, we still don’t get a set up to fully explain Ray’s idea, or elaborate on how things will go down. The ending plays off like we were watching a heist movie, and we have to see how Ray did it, but of course on a much smaller scale than a heist.

Not enough gets to actually happen in the film for me to love it, but the ideas are there. The acting is believable. The camera work is unnecessarily weird and I never really get fully immersed in that choice. High Flying Bird as a movie just is unable to reach as high as its title would imply.

2 out of 4.

Hotel Artemis

Hotel Artemis started advertising not that long ago and then went really hard at it. I avoided watching any trailers, but it did have a ton of posters, character spotlights, and general social media campaign.

I definitely thought and just assumed it was the same hotel in John Wick: Chapter 2, because again, I wasn’t paying a lot of attention to it.

I also went in expecting a shoot out, broken rules, high famous people death count, and so on.

Really, the only reason I was interested in the movie was due to the people acting in it.

Blooming
Including this formerly elusive fucker who is trying to be in everything the last year.

Hotel Artemis is less a hotel and more a hospital. It is in a penthouse of a large building in Los Angeles and it is a secret organization for criminals. After all, every hospital out there is for the good guys and regular guys, so why not a place for criminals. You cannot just be bad and get in, you have to join their club and pay your membership dues.

Basically, as long as there is an empty room and you are a member, you will have a place to go and get patched up without alerting the authorities. And this film starts with Waikiki (Sterling K. Brown) and his brother (Brian Tyree Henry) hurt after a robbery gone wrong making it over to the facilities. It is the future and LA is having big riot problems over clean water, so everyone is on edge.

Thankfully, they get patched up by the Nurse (Jodie Foster) just swell, and just have to wait for a new liver to be created for his brother. They find out that the current patrons of the hotel are not all there by coincidence, and that greater and more deadly stakes are afoot at this place they thought was safe.

Also starring Sofia Boutella, Dave Bautista, Charlie Day, Jeff Goldbloom, Jenny Slate, Kenneth Choi, and Zachary Quinto.

Big Dog Little Dog
Finally, some hired help who can punch and sew.

Hotel Artemis is a film that has some cool and interesting ideas, but never really reaches its goals.

The plot is a bit shit. We have good reasons for future riots, those are believable, but the backstory for the Nurse takes too long to play out despite being one of our major points. The plot line with Boutella was average, and Brown’s was more fleshed out, but still didn’t feel really worth it. Tons of hype around Goldbloom, but in the end it also lacked a huge amount of oomph in the trunk.

It also didn’t have as much action as promised. Sure, we do get a few creative deaths and really well choreographed and decorated rooms, but the action itself is weak. Near the end it looked like there would be two different hallway scenes. One of them was interesting despite the many camera cuts, the other fell completely flat and denied the viewers of a great brawl aspect.

And yet, there are still elements to praise. For example, Foster was completely into this character. She had the quirks, the voice, everything felt unique. Foster transformed herself for this role and really, I couldn’t tell Foster was behind it at all. Probably her best role in over a decade.

Almost all the actors seemed to be acting in ways that were very uncommon for them. Brown doesn’t really play shooting criminal badasses, Day is generally spastic, but this time he was wormy and theoretically “cool” with a different voice, Quinto played a character who was definitely slow witted, and Slate wasn’t completely annoying.

The cast of characters is the reason to watch this movie, but it will unfortunately leave you just watching it once. Too many plot points that don’t go too many places will leave the story forgettable and the idea a wonderful dream.

2 out of 4.

Snowden

Hey, you hear about that Edward Snowden guy? He leaked a lot of USA secrets, namely what they were doing to the American people. Spying on everyone as part of the NSA.

Yeah! Big crazy stuff. And this patriot is now still living overseas in Russia, granted a temporary asylum. He is willing to come back to the USA if he would get a fair trial, but he knows he won’t and thus, a giant stalemate.

And if you watch the documentary Citizenfour, you will get the inside scoop of how he leaked the data to a few press markets and their plan for getting him out to safety. It is thrilling and great, which is why it was nominated for so many awards. Hell, it won best Documentary.

So this Snowden movie, off of its success, is meant to tell his story before the leak and a little bit after it. A regular biopic. But also, Oliver Stone directing, so you know a lot of shenanigans.

Computers
Computer shenanigans are some of my least favorite shenanigans.

Edward Snowden (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a smart dude, worked for the USA, stole from the USA, and is about to be on the run. The USA didn’t know he stole from them until the leaks began to happen, but he was a paranoid sun of a gun who knew how to keep his tracks hidden and knew how to keep his profile low.

He tried to join the military in his youth, he really did. But he broke something during a drill and got booted out, with knowledge that his foot was frail and had a big potential for more ouchies. So he instead found himself getting a job with the intelligence agencies. Sure, he doesn’t even have a college degree, but he was self taught and really fucking good at computers.

So Corbin O’Brian (Rhys Ifans) gave him a shot. They knew the next wars would be fought with computers, not nukes, and they had to make sure the USA had the biggest and best computers for when it all started.

But what drove Snowden to eventually stealing and spreading out the secrets? Did he get a moral code? Did he get beat up at school? Or was it his very liberal girlfriend (Shailene Woodley)?

Also starring Nicolas Cage, Scott Eastwood, Tom WIlkinson, Timothy Olyphant, Melissa Leo, and Zachary Quinto.

Colors
Her color choices make her look like a cartoon compared to Snowden.

Snowden is the most important thing to leave Elizabeth City, NC since the Wright Brothers left it to go to Kitty Hawk and learned to fly. And in a way, Snowden sort of taught us all to fly, didn’t he?

The problem with a biopic after a really good documentary is that it has to be really fucking good or else it won’t stand up to its predecessor. If they really want a biopic, they gotta come out before the documentary if they want a time in the sun. Just ask the movie Nina.

And in this case, this movie goes over so much the documentary does not, but still, it feels shallow in comparison. Honestly, who cares about them before? Unless Snowden also is the reason the spying happens, his life and story before the point are insignificant. The only part that’s that matter is how he got access and why he decided to tell the world.

So don’t see Snowden. Watch Citizenfour, get active in politics, do something. Don’t just continue to watch Oliver Stone movies and move on with your life.

1 out of 4.

Star Trek Beyond

I am sad. People die all the time, but now this is my third review post Anton Yelchin death, watching a movie with him in it. And sure, in this one he isn’t the lead. He is a major player, but a relatively minor part with only a few scenes to probably excel in.

Still though, he isn’t the captain.

But going into Star Trek Beyond, I am going in very weary. The last one was interesting, some cool scenes, but overall fell flat as a film. Star Trek Into Darkness was not trying hard enough to be its own movie, relying too heavily on being am unannounced remake.

So I am sad that the Star Trek movies are beginning to feel generic. Sad that Yelchin won’t be in future movies after this one. And sad that this one has unnecessary controversy relating to what George Takei does or does not give his blessing for.

Dance
Although if the film gives me a dance number, I might reconsider the generic comment.

Hey look! The USS Enterprise is still in action, still doing their normal things. Captain Kirk (Chris Pine) is still captain-y, Spock (Zachary Quinto) is still Vulcan-y, Scotty (Simon Pegg), Checkov (Yelchin), Sulu (John Cho), Bones (Karl Urban), and Uhura (Zoe Saldana) are all their names-y. Especially Bones.

Except there are some boredom pains. Kirk is worried he no longer cares about exploring and is just running with the motions. He is thinking bout switching up to a higher position and getting off the ship. Spock is also worried about his future. He just figured out that Future Spock has died (Fuck, I also forgot Leonard Nemoy had died since the last movie. Fuck fuck fuck). With the Vulcans a dying race, he feels he should get off the ship, help be an ambassador and start a purely Vulcan family.

But first, let’s do one more mission. They have to go into a Nebula to look for a missing space craft because only the Enterprise is built well enough to handle it. Everything is going okay, and hey, a surprise attack! Now the Enterprise is crashed on a planet, the crew separated, and a scary race of aliens who want to take down the Federation for some reason.

One last mission always does this, doesn’t it? Starring Idris Elba as the bad guy, Joe Taslim as the bad guy in second command, and Sofia Boutella as Jaylah, mysterious awesome alien lady.

NCA
And Jaylah is like Jesus, in that she is a savior of the film.

My main thought during the film and after it was over was how much better the title Into Darkness would have fit for this film than the previous film. It was definitely a darker in tone film. The crew was split up, the Enterprise fucked up, many people captured and some red shirts killed. They went into a very dark and scary Nebula to get to the plot. They went INTO DARKNESS.

But sure, a lot of the film is on a bright planet during the day, but still, that title change would be great.

The film itself is silly and full of meh moments. I honestly found myself shaking my head. Elements that were going to explain everything felt short. Action scenes might not have made a lot of sense. There was a very clusterfucky scene involving the enterprise mostly empty on the planet in the middle of the night, was written for explosions and not for anything else to make sense.

Without a few characters I would have been bored out of my mind and given this a pretty failing grade. But Urban as Bones was really on his game in this film and always brought a smile to my face. Boutella as Jaylah was a breath of fresh air, in terms of humor, action, and the whole package. Jaylah rocks, we need more Jaylah.

In fact, that is the only reason I want more Star Trek movies. Let Jaylah star in all of these movies and not get reduced down to a small bit character and I got something interesting to finally watch.

Yelchin has better movies out this year, go watch them instead. There are better action and Sci-Fi movies this year, and obviously better comedies. But if you just want filler, then there are worse ways to go.

2 out of 4.

Hitman: Agent 47

Video game movies are big these days, said no movie executive ever. There has never been a more consistently bad source to generate movie ideas from. And to think, just eight years ago, a movie studio already made that bad choice for this franchise. In 2007, Hitman came out and everyone ignored it. I know I did. It is an average to good game series, depending on your creativity, but anyone could look at it and tell it wouldn’t make a great movie that also was truly representative of the game itself.

That is not saying that you can’t make a movie about Hitmen. They are pretty frequent actually. It is just this hitman in particular and his story that no one would care about in a film.

But now we have Hitman: Agent 47. The only reason I can imagine this existing is because the actually Hitman game series has a new release this year as well, and they are trying to do this big worldwide assassination network, and this movie might give them positive buzz before that comes out in December.

These are the type of people who like to say that there is no such thing as bad PR. Technically true, but also fuck you, don’t make shitty headlines.

Man
This shooting style makes more sense when you realize the third eye on the back of his head.

If you listen to the narrator, you may learn that back in the mid 1900’s, some dude made a special science serum thing that could turn people into wonderful killing machines! It made them emotionless, not worrying about fear or guilt or any of that silly stuff that prevent people from killing people. Oh and of course it made them stronger, faster, the whole nine yards. It was awesome. But then Dr. Litvenko (Ciarán Hinds) runs away. He gets the hell out of there. Moral reasons, or something. Who knows. Now he is missing and no one has any knowledge on how to recreate his formulas, basically ending the “Agent” program then and there.

UNTIL NOW OF COURSE. Syndicate International, totally not an evil sounding organization, is close to finalizing everything and they need to find Litvenko to figure it out completely. Sure, they have parts finished, but they will never be as great as a real, pure, Agent. So SI realized they might be able to find him if they can find his daughter, Katia (Hannah Ware), instead. Brilliant! Especially if she knew where he was. She has been searching most of her life too.

What’s that? Dude in a suit and red tie (Rupert Friend) is trying to kill her as well? And some big bushy eyed John Smith (Zachary Quito) fellow is protecting her and telling her crazy stories about assassins and agents? This is all probably incredibly confusing for her, just now being introduced to the concept and what those types of men are looking for.

And yeah. A lot of people die. Angelababy plays the handler of Agent 47 and Thomas Kretschmann is the head of the Syndicate.

Other people
“Emotionless lethal killer is after me? But I love Hayden Christensen!”

Hitman is a movie that should be all about “dat sweet action,” but for some reason, tries to give a detailed and complex plot to go with the action. There is nothing wrong with plot. Plot is fantastic. I love plot. I also love my plot to be a bit sensical. A narrator does its best job to just throw information out of the screen, right away, to catch you up on all this backstory. Why have backstory at all? Who knows, because it is a stand alone film, there has to be better ways of creating a plot than over a minute of computerized awkward exposition to start the movie. The bigger problem with that narration is that because it went very quickly, it wasn’t even that helpful. It told a few facts about things that happened, but barely explained any of the why, and it just left me confused first few minutes into the film.

And things didn’t make any real sense until about a half hour (Guessing) into the film, once all the twists and turns were finally settled. After that they did a good job of mostly focusing on the action, because the remaining plot was quite simple after that point. But if anything, watching a very simple action movie should not leave the confused. Confused at how a few people can fall and land on train tracks made of wood and metal and surrounded by lots of rocks? Sure. Science shenanigans. But not confused as to why every single character with a name is acting the way they do.

That is the main problem. A shit plot. Because a lot of the action scenes are quite entertaining. There are obvious throw backs to the game, including outfit changes, sneaking objects, and the multitude of weapons.

But even our main character, who played the scoundrel Mr. Wickham in Pride and Prejudice, doesn’t seem to be a great fit either. He technically has the look, aka a bald head and suit. Somehow his emotionless acting doesn’t seem to fit for a character that is supposed to lack emotions. Every time he speaks, it just sounds like a scrawny young adult in this situation, never a bad ass killing machine.

Hear that Hollywood? Plot isn’t always the most important part of a movie. Sexy action is. So keep it simple, keep it elegant, keep it extreme. And then we can give you money for entertaining us.

1 out of 4.

Buy It! – This movie is available now on {Blu-Ray} and {DVD}.

Star Trek Into Darkness

For whatever reason, just like my previous review of Star Trek, I am finding the right words to describe Star Trek Into Darkness.

I feel like a fake, a liar. I am a nerd who knows not a lot about the Star Trek series and never really cared to find out. So as to whether or not this movie fits the Star Trek world, I can’t comment on. But I tell you what I can do. Ignore the source material and just tell you if the movie is awesome or not. Basically what I do for every movie anyways!

Group
I honestly don’t know if this is from the first or second Star Trek.
The movie takes place right where we left off. Kirk (Chris Pine) is still captain of the Starship Enterprise, with the exact same crew. Spock (Zachary Quinto) is the first officer, Sulu (John Cho) the pilot, Bones (Karl Urban) the doctor, Scotty (Simon Pegg) the engineer, and Uhura (Zoe Saldana) and Chekov (Anton Yelchin) as whatever they do on the ship.

Well, things quickly hit the fan when a bombing occurs in one of Star Fleet’s libraries, plotted by John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch), a former Star Fleet officer. That’s right, someone turning against his own former employers! Must have received a very poor severance package. After a few other attacks, he escapes to Kronos, home planet of the Klingons, the warrior race who wouldn’t mind having a reason to conquer Earth.

Well, crap, I guess they are screwed. Unless…

Clearly the best plan of action is to use long range Plasma Missiles to take him out (no trial needed), while hopefully not starting an intergalactic war. I trust Admiral Marcus (Peter Weller) personally, so I am sure the strategy will work.  Bruce Greenwood also returns as Admiral Pike, and Alice Eve is brought in as mysterious science/weapons expert Carol.

No Shame
Nope. No Shame at all here at Gorgon Reviews.
I saw the sequel in 3D and I am almost certain it didn’t warrant the higher price. The film was made for IMAX and later changed to include 3D, so it was a sort of afterthought. In terms of “rounding” out the picture, it didn’t really work for me, and felt wasted. But hey, some sticks fly at your face in the beginning, and I might have actually tried to dodge them.

I loved Star Trek Into Darkness. It was exciting, it was action packed, and it refilled my lens flare quota for the rest of the year. It is of course beyond perfect. I left out a lot of plot details, but I disliked that problems introduced early in the film were fixed only a few minutes later. It made me wonder why even write those problems in the first place and made me feel like they were rehashing the first movie.

I also hate that they introduced regenerative blood into the series. Regeneration itself is a very tricky subject, as it becomes a deus ex machina. Unfortunately it also appeared in Iron Man 3 and was one of the worst plot fixers in both movies.

I’d stil suggest watching the movie and avoid IMDB/Wikipedia, there are spoilers everywhere.

Despite not being a Trekkie, I am deep enough in this Pop Culture game to understand a lot of the throwbacks and homages to the original series/films. In fact, I liked this film enough that I almost want to try and watch the older Star Trek films, out of curiosity. Almost.

3 out of 4.

Star Trek

I claim to be pretty nerdy on this site, yet almost every time it seems something nerdy comes up, I claim to not be that type of nerd.

This is another example of one of those times. Star Trek? Never really watched any of it. The amount I know about it is the amount I am supposed to know as a pop culture fanatic. I know some of the quoted famous lines, who a couple captains were played by, and that is about it. So hey, this film just has to appeal to those characteristics and be entertaining to watch for me to enjoy it.

Flareee
Ah, Lens Flare. Makes me think of outer space. I doubt they used enough.

Movie begins not with the crew we love. Its other people. Who totally get attacked my Romulans, when they thought it was just a lightning storm. Turns out they are from the future, and want to kill some Spock dude. Whoops. Too early in time. Nero (Eric Bana), their leader doesn’t care. They continue to attack, killing the captain, leaving George Kirk (Chris Hemsworth) in charge, who orders the fleet to evacuate while he steers the ship on his own into the Romulans. His pregnant wife, Winona (Jennifer Morrison) gives birth to her son in the escape pod, James Tiberius Kirk (Chris Pine), while her husband, you know dies. Totally was a captain for a whole 10 minutes, but at least he saved lives.

Many years later, Kirk is a troublesome son. Smart, but doesn’t make something of his life. He could easily join the starfleet, be an officer in four years, and Captain a ship in eight. But he is lazy. Pike (Bruce Greenwood), a captain convinces him to try otherwise, and he enters star fleet. Definitely not just for a girl, Uhura (Zoe Saldana), an alien language expert.

Three years later, he is doing the Officer test. So soon! He ends up “cheating” some how to pass the test, which is supposed to be unwinnable, made by Spock (Zachary Quinto) himself. Half Vulcan, half Human, who joined Star Fleet instead of a science academy because he didn’t like the discrimination and perceived weaknesses. Eventually a distress signal is found near Vulcan, sending the academy into a panic and sending their entire fleet. Kirk is able to sneak aboard the Enterprise, thanks to the help of his doctor friend Bones (Karl Urban).

Hey look, a lot of other famous characters I have heard referenced before. Like Chekov (Anton Yelchin), a navigator and weird guy, and Sulu (John Cho), playing as George Takei. Scotty (Simon Pegg) gets there eventually.

So yeah, Romulans. They are mad. They set up a trap for the whole fleet! Can the Enterprise survive the attack, save the Vulcans, figure out what time travel shenanigans are going on, and save the day? Sure. But also, Leonard Nimoy.

Thorrr
In Star Trek for 5 minutes. Lands Thor part because of it.

Hey look, this film gave me pretty much everything I wanted in a Star Trek movie, as a non Trekkie, that’s great! My biggest complaint would just be weird technical aspects that tended to take me out of the setting.

Yes, lens flare indeed was an excessive problem. But then just little things that bugged me. Like little Kirk, driving the car and running away from the cops. He turns on the radio, and Sabotage from Beastie Boys comes on. So okay, car is playing music. I’m fine with that. But then car goes over cliff, he jumps out, car super far away, music still loud as ever, now it is just background music? Can’t do that shit to me. That bugs the crap out of me.

I think they did do a pretty good job dealing with a time traveling/parallel universe time line, and used it as a good way to explain why this is different than the TV show.

3 out of 4.

What’s Your Number?

I know what you are thinking. “This is just some dumb Romantic Comedy. What’s Your Number? What is with movies that ask questions in the title!?” Or something like that. But probably not. Probably just never heard of the movie. That is the simpler guess!

But hey, it also has enough T&A for the fellas and the ladies, so even if you are shallow you are covered.

eVANS
Covered. Like a hand towel.

Anna Faris is a dirty dirty whore. Or at least that is what she thinks of herself after reading in some magazine that at most, most women sleep with 10 guys. Women who sleep with 20 or more have a high percentage of living alone! Shit! She has slept with 19 guys, more than all of her friends. The self esteem issues she faces even drives her to get a boob job (Oh wait. No, that was real life). Doesn’t help that she seems to change everything about herself when she meets a guy too, instead of being herself (Ending moral alert).

Her sister is getting married (Ari Graynor) and so she gets the great idea to try and see if any of her ex-boyfriends are awesome now, and try to reconnect with him. That way she doesn’t push the number over the “limit”. With the help of her equally (or more) promiscuous neighbor Chris Evans, she sets off to find the people on her list, to see if she can save herself!

Its amazing how many famous people she ended up seducing/dating/spending one night with. Including Zachary Quinto, Joel McHale, Andy Samberg, and Chris Pratt (which is a great side story), and even Aziz Ansari (Who we only get to hear on the phone, but its obvious it is him).

nUMBER WHAT IS IT
Also, Alcohol is involved in a lot of her decisions.

I won’t say how it ends, because you know how it ends. But I actually guessed it would end a slightly different way than how it actually did, so bam, I got owned.

I think Anna Faris spent a lot of work trying to make sure the movie was funny (and might have done it because she wanted to be in Bridesmaids but didn’t make a cut? I cant remember). Something about woman power. But I did laugh a bunch, mostly at stupid stuff, but I found it funny. Not at all close to any sort of typical RomCom. Of course one disadvantage is that if you hate her voice, you will hear it a lot, and it will suck. But she is a mostly likable star, and has good chemistry with Evans (who is a bit less Douchey than he normally appears).

But hey. Slackers rejoice. And I will rate this as I feel fit!

3 out of 4.

Margin Call

Margin Call is “inspired by a true story”, with that story being that financial crisis thing in 2008.

Now, I mention a lot that I am not an expert on blah topic that the movie is about, and this is definitely no different. Money things confuse me. With no basis whatsoever, I personally think if we just spend more money, the economy will be good. Done and done. Thankfully, to really appreciate this movie you do not have to be a financial expert. They do enough explaining to get the gist of the problem, but don’t focus on it. What is instead focused on is the human reactions and ethical dilemmas they now face.

Margin Call Quinto
What I’m trying to say is that this movie is a “thinker”.

The movie takes place over about 24 hours at an unnamed banking/investment company on Wall Street. A downsizing occurs, so unexpectedly a bunch of people lose their jobs, including Stanley Tucci, the head of the Risk Analysis team who has been with them for 19 years. He was almost done with a new project though, but they do not care. His phone is turned off, and sent out the door. Before he goes, he gives a flash drive to Zachary Qunito with the data and says to “Be Careful”.

Later that night all alone, he discovers something horrible. (Here comes the horrible at finances part). The equation they have been using for investments and potential gain has been wrong. The last few days it has been wrong. Everything is about to collapse on itself, but no one realizes it yet, except for him. What follows the rest of the night is a series of meetings and panic as the news travels up the company ladder. First to Penn Badgley, a guy who works with Quinto, to their higher ups Paul Bettany and Kevin Spacey. Then to their higher ups Demi Moore and Simon Baker. And finally the highest higher up, Jeremy Irons.

What happens in the movie is not just a series of “board meetings” or anything, but at least one occurs. Its the emotion roller coaster that the characters experiences as they first find out, almost everyone taking a different path. A few people only worry immediately about their own jobs, some worry about the company, some worry about everyone’s companies (psst, that is Spacey. He has morals!). Then again, some don’t care about any of that, and just getting the information out there and trying to fix it.

There is a lot of down time between the big important decisions, which allows the characters to break off into their group to discuss all the possible repercussions and really branch out their personalities. There’s also smaller sub plot of finding Stanley Tucci, to make sure he doesn’t tell anyone what’s up.

Tucci Margin Call
To which he pretty much responds, “Eat a big bag of dicks.”

I think as a general description, this movie sounds pretty boring. But all the actors do phenomenal jobs. No one really stood out as being a bad actor, at least. The discussions of money became more and more interesting, as the levels of those involved increased. Started out slow for me, but really finished strong. And it also made me mad. Damn you, banker people, for somehow messing up things that I still don’t necessarily understand.

3 out of 4.