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Tanya Khoury: Outrageous truth
January 24, 2014
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All the talk about The Wolf of Wall Street has created quite the ruckus within the media circles here in the UAE; I don’t really know how people keep getting surprised at this sort of thing when it is a clear fact that censorship at the cinema is nothing new. Luckily I got the chance to see the film abroad and frankly was surprised that the movie even got a release here at all.

Regardless of all that however, we are here to talk about the film and the whole film for that matter. It’s awards season and already DiCaprio has managed to get himself a Golden Globe, practically paving the way for the Oscar. Whether I agree with that is a completely different matter, the fact is the movie has Scorsese and his muse DiCaprio doing what they do, all the time and very well.

The film runs for a good 180 minutes, that’s three whole hours, quite a long time to sit in one area even if everyone and their cousin had given the movie a positive review. This is a biography drama about the notorious and yet ever so charming Jordan Belfort (well at least the DiCaprio part), and how he managed to create an empire of money and sustain it for as long as he could.

The fact that this is based on a true individual is what is the most intriguing to be honest. Cinema naturally has a way of making unbelievable situations seem even more lavish, to the extent that it becomes quite ridiculous. Surely things did not play out in Belfort’s life in the exact way that the movie portrays it, but the fact that it is even remotely loosely based on some sort of truth is pretty outrageous.

I enjoyed it, it was entertaining and there were parts where I did laugh out loud, but the best parts of the film for me were occupied by the supporting cast and not by the main character. DiCaprio is a naturally born talent, he is good and he manages to convince you with his roles time and time again.

 However, after you figure his character out in the first 20 minutes of the film it just gets a little repetitive. The supporting cast carries the film from then on; Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie and even Kyle Chandler are all equally as good. Their characters showcased a lot of depth in their acting abilities and I was thoroughly entertained by them. Like I mentioned though, the film goes on and on; it could have been a little shorter and achieved the same results as it had with audiences and critics all around.

I would like to suggest seeing the film in the cinema but that would not be the best experience, if you do happen to see it abroad then great! Otherwise Itunes is your best bet, it is not my favourite collaboration between Scorsese and DiCaprio though, and it certainly is not something new that we have not seen before.

Belfort’s story is most definitely an interesting one, his book may be well worth the read, but as always with Hollywood films, actors and directors they are picked by preferences and popularity, and to me even though the film was an entertaining one, it does not come close to the better films that have been cast aside (due to that lack of audience interest) for award season. As always, my tastes are never really on par with the media and so my rating for ‘Wolfie’ is a 7.5 at best.

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