Friday, 29 January 2016

The Big Short (4 Stars)

This is an interesting experiment. Can a good film be made about a boring subject? The answer is Yes. The film succeeds in making intricate details of the American stock market fascinating. On the other hand, I can't honestly say that I understood everything in the film. It was especially difficult for me to understand the first 20 minutes when Dr. Michael Burry persuades the banks to create bonds for him to invest in.

The film begins in 2005. Everyone trusts the housing market. "Safe as houses" is a well known slogan. Only one man, an eccentric fund manager called Michael Burry sees that the American housing market is being propped up by dodgy loans. He predicts that the whole system will come crashing down. And the following years proved him right. When everyone lost billions of dollars he and those who trusted him became very rich.

The film's main weakness is a result of it being a true story. Even though it's one single story, it's separated into different segments that run in parallel. The main four characters never meet one another. They act independently after hearing, directly or indirectly, about Michael Burry's plan.

I need to watch the film again. Maybe I'll enjoy it even more when I can better understand the financial issues involved.

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