This week, Chris Sullivan occupies Wall Street with the amoral banking drama Margin Call before getting Kristen Stewart moving on the dancefloor at the Snow White And The Huntsman wrap party...
On paper a film about 24 hours in the life of a firm of Wall Street stock brokers doesn’t sound too exciting but, in the hands of novice writer/director J.C. Chandor, Margin Call is quite the opposite.
It tells a story of a disgustingly greedy firm that, built on making money no matter the misery it might cause, has speculated on mortgage profit yields and, after sensing a disastrous collapse in the property market is imminent, sacks 80% of its work force.
They include analyst Eric (Stanley Tucci) who, as he leaves the office, slips a USB stick containing some shocking information to his younger, still-employed colleague, Peter (Zachary Quinto) - namely that $3 trillion will very soon vanish because of some dodgy mathematics.
First on the case is Will Emerson (Paul Bettany), a loathsome ex-pat English trader who tries to justify spending $2.1 million a year. He’s soon followed by his boss Sam (Kevin Spacey) and his chief, the billionaire CEO John Tuld (clearly based on Lehman Brothers' boss Richard Fuld who led his company to bankruptcy and pocketed $44 million a year for doing so).
Brilliantly rendered by Jeremy Irons, Tuld flies in on his helicopter and declares that he is rich because he is ruthless. "It's not brains that has got me here, I can assure you of that!" he says. With his back to the wall, Tuld decides to unload all of this now-worthless stock to the very people that have made his firm billions.
The amazing thing about Margin Call is that even though it breaks the golden rule by giving you no one to root for - every character is as loathsome and as greedy as the next, we the audience (even though we might know nothing about the markets) are somehow kept on the edge of our seats still caring about the outcome.
Few films have managed to capture this amoral world, which while disgusting is still fascinating. I left thinking how can these horrible lying, insatiable, gluttonous excuses for human beings not only get away with what is fundamentally fraud, but get paid millions when they should all be thrown in jail.
That night I was called upon to DJ for the wrap party for the film Snow White And The Huntsman – with its Warhol Factory theme, it was right up my street and an absolutely storming do.
After my first set I bumped into an old friend, Rupert Sanders who directed the film that twists the old Brothers Grimm fairy tale. It stars Kristen ‘Twilight’ Stewart in the title role with Charlize Theron as Queen Ravena.
He then introduced me to Stewart, who, dressed like a young indie kid, I’d completely failed to recognize in the low lights of the club!
But I reckon I redeemed myself: l was the last on the decks and, after mixing Mock and Tuff into Todd Terje’s re-edit of the classic Horse With No Name by America, I saw Kirsten dancing with her hands in the air. Job done says I.