Top 100 Films. 81. Wolf of Wall Street (2013)

Martin Scorsese’s biopic on the crazy life of  Jordan Belfort, a stockbroker who played the system and was heavily engaged into corruption to amount a wealth unimaginable to most people. It is a wild ride of sex, money and dwarf throwing. 

The life of Jordan Belfort seems to be perfect for a cinematic adaptation, based on his memoir of the same name, Scorsese is the perfect director for this wild ride of erratic and chaotic events. This film plays out like a sports car that is speeding down the road never putting the foot on the brakes. The speed of Belfort’s rise and fall is rapid, the film’s pace never slows down. Coming in at around at three hours long the film does not feel anywhere near its running time. Scorsese is the perfect director to handle this pace.

This is a Scorsese classic, long take, pristine editing and a lead that is an anti-hero that rises and falls. This is Dicaprio’s best performance as he plays Belfort perfectly as a guy you should hate but has such an attractive aura. It’s hard to tell where the film takes liberties with the events because the whole three hours feels so exaggerated and big that the films pulls you in so far that all that happens in film could be seen as the truth. Countless drugs, prostitutes, loads of money, it is the encapsulation of the American dream but achieving in a way in the expense of others. (Which some may argue that is the American Dream)

Wolf of Wall Street is also an incredibly funny film and the scene where Belfort and Donnie played by Jonah Hill, when they both take a large amount of Quaaludes made me cry of laughter in the cinema. I laughed so much my sides hurt and had to take a breather. The cast was fantastic, Jonah Hill surprised me, even though he is known for his comedic roles, the amount of dedication he brought to the role was far beyond I thought capable of Hill. There are too many flashy and fantastical moments to mention here but the whole film is a hell of a rush.

The film itself is on all the drugs that Belfort explains that he uses everyday. I enjoy the stories of people’s rise and people’s fall. They shows the consequences of greed, for every moment you saw Belfort succeed only made the fall more harrowing. You can see the toll that it took on Belfort, no one can live on the pace of a life and the ending is humble and well thought out. Dicaprio was robbed of an Oscar and his future win seemed to be a win that made up for the robbery on that night.

Wolf of Wall Street is one Scorsese’s best films and it is so fast and chaotic. It is fun, comedic, exploitative and a great tale of how far a man can rise but also how far a man can fall. A modern classic that will be put in the same tier of films such as Goodfellas and Casino as time passes.

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