Wednesday 20 July 2022

[Post 130] 5 Financial Movies To Watch

What better way to learn about finance than to watch a movie? I came across the big short on YouTube a while ago and have been on a financial movie binge since then. Here are some of the financial movies that I have seen and enjoyed so far.

1.The Big Short(2015)

The movie is based on the book written by Micheal Lewis ,The Big Short:Inside the Doomsday Machine.Basically ,the movie is about how several finance experts and opportunist predict the collapse of the US housing market in 2008 during the mid-2000s and how they discover the flaws and corruption in the system through their research.My first impression was that it would be a documentary-style story (those kind really bores me to death). However, after 5 minutes of watching, it was not. And did I mention the stellar cast, which includes Brad Pitt, Christian Bale, Steve Carell, and Ryan Gosling, among others? Furthermore, it simplifies financial concepts such as CDOs and why bonds rated AAA+ are dog s**t. According to one YouTube commenter, "I thought the big short was a comedy seeing it's tag, but it turned out to be a horror movie."

2. Margin Call(2011)
Essentially, this film is about an investment firm in the early stages of the 2008 financial crisis, where an analyst uncovers evidence that threatens to destroy the firm and the subsequent action taken by the company.It's another fantastic film with an all-star cast that includes Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Ions, Zachary Quinto and Paul Battany .It offers the viewpoint of an investment banking firm prior to the 2008 financial crisis.Although there is a lot of talking, it depicts many similarities to real-life multinational corporations, such as the hierarchy and the fact that the top doesn't really understand what the underlings do, as well as the ridiculous salary earned from working in an investment bank.

3.Too Big To Fail(2011) 

This film is based on the book "Too Big to Fail: The Inside Story of How Wall Street and Washington Fought to Save the Financial System—and Themselves" by Andrew Ross Sorkin. Essentially, the film depicts the government's perspective on how they handled the 2008 financial crisis, particularly from the perspective of Henry Paulson, who was appointed Secretary of Treasury after leaving his top job at Goldman Sachs, and how he tries to address the issues that arose during the global economic meltdown, ranging from Lehman Brothers to AIG, among others. It's a pretty good watch that depicts the government's point of view, as well as how various strategies were implemented and how the situation eventually deteriorated.

4.Boiler Room

A college dropout lands a job as a broker for a financial firm, putting him on the fast track to success. Success, on the other hand, clouds his judgment, drawing him into a world of corruption and greed. Essentially, the company runs a pump and dump/ponzi scheme using telemarketer techniques. Although it does not depict the financial crisis, it is unquestionably a must-see film for anyone looking to improve their sales/telemarketing techniques (or learn their tricks!), plus it include stellar cast like Ben Affleck,Vin Diesel etc

5.Inside Job

The final film on the list is Inside Job, a documentary film that depicts the 2008 financial crisis, how it unfolded, the key players who caused the event, and how the key players are still a part of the financial system today. Throughout the film, various key players from Asia to North America were interviewed.

Warning:Of the five films I introduce in this post, this is most likely the one that will give you high blood pressure and make you wonder how they got away with it.

Last but not least, I strongly recommend everyone to watch the films, especially the trio: Margin call (Company perspective), The Big Short (Retail and Hedge fund perspective), and Too big to fail (Government perspective).

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