Director Martin Scorsese’s latest work, which is again, with none other than Leonardo DiCaprio, The Wolf of Wall Street, is getting the praise that it deserves, but the film is also getting hammered by some folks. In fact, some even decided to pen a note to Scorsese, a letter actually, that some may find scathing. I find it funny, so go ahead and read it here. It’s a note to Hollywood, Scorsese and DiCaprio, written in an innocuous manner though. Don’t get me wrong as the real Jordan Belfort is no saint and I do blame the man for some of the schemes and lies, and how he became insanely rich for stepping over the faces of many people. But, the bad boy persona of Belfort, sadly, as a veil spreads the dark shadows over Belfort’s natural gifts and abilities.
Scorsese’s take on the character, his life and his social circle, as some say, glorifies Belfort’s evil deeds whether it’s fraud, money laundering, sex, drugs, you name it. But, watching the film twice in one week, I did not get the sense that what I was watching is to glorify anything and everything that Belfort did in his life. Scorsese is the master of cinema and DiCaprio is one of best actors we have today. It can be said that both artists are glorifying the art of acting and of course, film-making. The intensity of the film and its frenetic in nature pacing, once again shows how passionate both Scorsese and DiCaprio are.
Recently, I came across an interesting article published by Hollywood Reporter, in it the director of photography, Rodrigo Prieto, whose credit includes films like Brokeback Mountain and Argo, talks about using various cameras and formats to great effect. Throughout the shoot, Rodrigo, used the photography to reflect what Belfort was experiencing during the progression of time. You can read the article here.
Is The Wolf of Wall Street an important film?
If I am being asked, I’d say, yes. A year or two from today, the film should be one of the assignments in colleges, and should be treated as a wake-up call to the young generation. It indeed is a common sense not dive into the dark hole and take with you many innocent folks in order to be rich, but what I believe we should take from Scorsese’s picture, is the passion towards achieving your goals. There is a scene at the very end of the film that I found quite artistic, but also very meaningful and innocuous. The look on Dicaprio’s face, as he steps down from the stage, and walks to the crowd of people sitting in front of him. There, in that scene, what he asks few folks in the front row, defines the meaning of the film. It defines, in fact, Belfort’s true ambition and his success. It’s simple. How would you sell a pen? – The look on the very faces of people in front of Belfort and their minds were filled with confusion. And to be honest, after all the laughter in that dark room I was sitting in, the cheerful crowd, with me, we were all quiet, trying to figure out, how to sell that god damn pen. The Wolf, just waits for us, to see, if there is anyone with the gift. There. That’s it. I get it. We should give Belfort a high five. The Wolf of Wall Street was always one step ahead of us. And, he still is.