It’s no surprise I had sky high expectations for The Wolf of Wall Street. I mean, you have Martin Scorcese, teamed back up with his favorite lead actor, Leonardo DiCaprio, along with a list of supporting actors even the most average moviegoer would recognize. Leo is hungry for that first Oscar. Heck, even the previews were top notch. But you and I both know how it usually goes with high expectations. Not just with movies, but with anything in life really. If you have high expectations, more often than not, you’re going to be disappointed. “Man, this new pizza place isn’t very good.” “I knew letting my buddy hook me up with the friend of the girl he just met three days ago wasn’t a good idea.” “This candle smelled really good in the store.” The list goes on. Every once in awhile though, you’re fantastically satisfied when those expectations and hopes are met. Needless to say, The Wolf of Wall Street did that with flying colors.
I was reluctant to have my first review for BuzzNtheBurgh be for a movie that’s been in the theaters for a little over a month, but it’s still currently being played and I was so impressed with the film that I felt it necessary to urge those who haven’t had the privilege of seeing it to do so before it’s too late. And by too late, I mean you’ll have to wait until the home release, unless you’re one of those crazy piracy experts. In the future, I will stick to films that have been released within two weeks or less. Anyways, let me just highlight a few things that make the Wolf of Wall Street a must see.
You don’t have to be in the business to know his name. I’m fairly sure even an average eleven year old would recognize his name. And that’s with good reason. His movies now have eighty Oscar nominations to go along with twenty wins. He knows what he’s doing. Nobody tells a story like Marty does. The way he uses a first person narrative throughout the film as he has done with previous films such as Goodfellas and Casino is entertainingly effective. If it works, why change it? His best trait of all may be what he brings out of the actors in his films. And that’s a huge part of what makes a director and his successive work so successful. If you expect the best, you’ll receive the best.
Another household name who despite his talent and expansive resume of award winning films, has yet to win an Oscar himself. He has been nominated three times previously and is not surprisingly nominated for best actor in this year’s awards on March 2nd. My personal opinion is that he should finally get that elusive win, but the competition is as tough as ever. I’ll discuss that in more detail in a future piece. As stated about Marty’s ability to get the best from his actors, Leo is the prime example of that as the main character, smooth talking stock broker, Jordan Belfort. You truly believe watching him that he IS Jordan Belfort. And it’s no easy task to do so considering the crescendo of a story Belfort’s is.
I’m a sucker for movies based on true stories and Scorcese has had great success in the past with such films. It’s quite obvious when you watch Wolf that that story is exaggerated just a tad, but I assure you it’s with great validity they do so. It’s a rollicking, deabaucherous roller coaster ride detailing Jordan Belfort’s early start as a young broker just getting his start to his rise and fall as the founder of Stratton Oakmont with all the money, drugs, women, and parties you can handle in between. You will be hooked early as a small role from Matthew McCoughnaey as Belfort’s first professional mentor and his early scene explaining the keys to being a successful broker will grab you and not let go. I liked Mccoughnaey’s character so much I was actually mildly disappointed to see his character exit. I knew after watching that scene that I was in store for something special.
I’d kick myself if I didn’t mention Jonah Hill and his portrayal of Leo’s sidekick and eventual business partner, Donnie Azoff. While it may be hard to say this considering the performance Leo gives as Belfort, I believe Jonah Hill’s performance in Wolf is easily the most entertaining and downright impressive of the entire film. What do we love as moviegoers? We love memorable scenes and the quotable lines that come with them. Donnie Azoff delivers the lion share of both. You’ll love his heavy New York accent, his large dark rimmed glasses, and most of all his quirky yet surprisingly cocky persona. You’ll be seeing him come March as he is also, not surprisingly, nominated for an Oscar for best supporting actor.
Final Thoughts from: The Movie Boss
If Martin Scorcese, Leo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, and the badass previews/trailers weren’t able to get you into the theaters to see the Wolf yet, I hope my thoughts can be the tipping point to do so. I must say, this is no movie for young children, as there is plenty of drug use, graphic sex scenes, and foul language to go around. I don’t envision the majority of the Buzz’s audience to be much younger than eighteen though, so I have little worry. But for us adults, the film is a well written, well directed, and masterfully acted laugh riot from beginning to end.
BuzzNtheBurgh’s Rating and Quote: 5 Bee’s out of 5. “It’s worth seeing in the theaters more than once.”
Feel free to also read the Boss’s At Home Movie Rental of the Week here and keep an eye out for his review next week of the upcoming film set to release Jan. 31st, That Awkward Moment starring Zac Efron.