The wolf of Wall Street (Martin Scorsese, 2o13)


The wolf of Wall Street, directed by Martin Scorsese (2013).

Score: Funny and entertaining, but much too long.

The wolf of Wall Street is based on the real story of Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio), who became a millionaire by selling penny stocks by the thousands to naïve wannabes, and other illegal procedures. He dumps his school sweetheart (Cristin Milioti) and marries a hottie (Margot Robbie), teams up with Donnie Azzoff (Jonah Hill), who is dumb and illiterate but wants to make as much money as the next guy and off they go to make millions, do a lot of drugs and bring prostitutes to work. It’s three fucking hours of watching them throw bank notes in the air, snort coke from women’s butts and be deplorable human beings, and that’s absolutely everything there is to it.

I’m thankful Scorsese at least refrained from being patronizing. In fact he refrained from being patronizing so much that it apparently went over some people’s heads. I was discussing this film with my dad before either of us had watched it and he was reluctant to watch it because he had heard on the radio it shamelessly glorified drug use and decadence. When I was watching the scene when ***SPOILERS*** Donnie and Jordan take those stale pills and end up drooling, babbling and crawling around, to say nothing of the fact that Donnie almost chokes on a ham roll and Jordan almost lets him die so he will have less to explain on court ***END SPOILERS*** I was thinking: ‘Yeah… apology of drug use… Some aesops are not ham-fisted enough for some critics, I can tell’.

Leonardo DiCaprio is great in this, as he has been for the last ten years. I consider him one of the best actors of his generation and at least for now he continues to deliver. Jonah Hill is really, really funny, much more than I had expected. The rest of the cast is good as well, and in general it’s a quite well-made movie, just like anything with a big enough budget these days. Oh, and Matthew McConaughey is there only for five minutes.

But it’s unbearably long. It could have lasted just under two hours easily, but it just went on and on. And it adds very little to the experience, because I watched it a few months ago and I don’t remember half of it. I miss the old times where you went to watch something that was three hours long and thought: ‘oh, the director must have something really complex to say if he needs three hours, or the source material is excruciatingly long and the screenwriter didn’t know how to make it shorter’. Now, getting dangerously close to the three-hour mark is considered the norm and I fucking hate it. Please, directors and screenwriters: use fucking ellipsis. Be economical, go to the point. Stop sucking your own dicks with tedious character development scenes you could have used to advance the story as well. Look back to the 80’s and 90’s. My boyfriend and I recently rewatched The Matrix because they were airing it and commented on how economical it was: every scene and dialog gave you relevant information and either advanced the story, developed the characters or did both. I can’t say the same aboutThe wolf of Wall Street, or any recent movie that lasts two hours and a half or more, for instance.

If you haven’t watched I definitely recommend it, it will be a fun three hours of your life.

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