My name is Jordan Belfort, the year I turned 26, I made 49 million dollars, which really pissed me off because it was three shy of a million a week.
After a two-year absence from the big screen, Martin Scorsese is returning this fall with The Wolf of Wall Street. Terence Winter ("Boardwalk Empire," "The Sopranos") adapted the screenplay from Jordan Belfort’s memoir. The Wolf of Wall Street marks the 4th collaboration between Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio, who tackles the juicy role of Belfort himself in the film. The film is a crime drama, naturally, and as usual Scorsese and Dicaprio both have willingly thrown themselves into recreating the opulent and crazy scene that was Wall Street in the 1990s.
After viewing the trailer numerous times, we can barely contain our excitement. Here are the five things that stood out to us the most.
Return to Form by Martin Scorsese
We love when an auteur like Scorsese experiments with different forms (documentaries, television, concert films), but it’s truly a joy to see him return to his wheelhouse. The Wolf of Wall Street trailer displays the themes of greed and desperation that drove such Scorsese masterpieces as Goodfellas and Casino, both penned by Nicholas Pileggi. Jordan Belfort’s rise and fall seem (though we haven’t read his memoir) to mirror a similar trajectory as the roller coaster rides experienced by Henry Hill and Ace Rothstein. Plus, did you hear that glorious voice-over narration?
Scorsese on Digital: Round 2
Ready for a little eye candy? The footage from The Wolf of Wall Street is stunning, complete with yachts, extravagant pool parties, office soirees (but more on that later) and breathtaking views of Manhattan. Shot by cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto fresh from his Oscar nomination for his work in Argo, this film marks the second time Scorsese has opted for digital over of film stock (the first time being Hugo, which was also shot in 3D).
Transformative Performances From Hill, McConaughey, Bernthal and Robbie
Forgive us for pointing out the obvious, but The Wolf of Wall Street has a tremendous cast. Jonah Hill wearing era-accurate veneers? Jon Bernthal ("The Walking Dead") sporting a handlebar mustache? Needless to say, when Scorsese calls, actors respond with enthusiasm and do everything they can to rise to the challenge. Matthew McConaughey plays Mark Hanna, an early boss and mentor to Belfort, in such a delightfully kooky way that you can already envision his Best Supporting Actor campaign.
While the cast is mostly male, we are excited to see what Margot Robbie can do. Her compelling work on the cancelled TV-show "Pan Am" proved that she is an incredibly versatile actress who is quite capable of breathing new life into the stereotypical girlfriend role.
Did you catch a glimpse of the opulent office party in The World of Wall Street trailer? Complete with dancing girls, a matching band, and with booze a-pouring, the scene conjures up Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane, particularly when Jordan Belfort prances around the office in a manner that is markedly reminiscent of Kane’s announcement to his staff of his growing interest in the Spanish American War. Prideful, ambitious and domineering, the protagonists of both films embody capitalism at its most rampant. Is this Scorsese’s homage to Welles?
Leonardo DiCaprio Like a Boss
On the heels of performances in films like Django Unchained and The Great Gatsby, Leonardo DiCaprio seems to be reaffirming his status as a major movie star. As Jordan Belfort, DiCaprio channels slick stockbroker in memorable fashion as he engages in securities fraud and money laundering and thoroughly enjoys the ride. Judging by the trailer alone, his Belfort is intelligent, wild and reckless—three qualities that DiCaprio exudes with ease.
Within the two minutes, we see DiCaprio holding a chimpanzee, pop and locking, boozing and throwing a number of objects—orange juice, lobsters, cash and even a little person. DiCaprio looks unhinged, but never over the top, and we can’t wait to see the whole show.