‘Wall Street’ buys out its competition

Melissa Young

With our nation already in an economic hardship, there couldn’t have been a better time for the movie “Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps” to hit theaters. As a sequel to “Wall Street,” this movie demonstrates insight into what the stock exchange deals with on a daily basis. The suspense hits right off the bat when Gordon Gekko (Douglas) appears. He does a convincing portrayal of an honest, and trustworthy man.

At the end of the first movie, Gekko is sentenced to jail for contributing to insider trading. He is a tough, selfish and intimidating man who knows how to manipulate people, including Jake Moore (LeBeouf), who happens to be dating Winnie Gekko (Mulligan), Gekko’s daughter.

Gekko has served his time and decides to write a book, “Greed is Good.” Winnie and her father haven’t spoken in years, and she doesn’t plan on it in the future. They had a rough relationship and she doesn’t wish to be a part of his life any longer. Moore knows he wants to marry Winnie and realizes that he should meet her father.

While at a conference speaking about his book, Moore takes initiative and introduces himself to Gekko. From that point on Moore develops a secret relationship with him without realizing that Gekko has a manipulative plan in mind. Moore works with the stock exchange as well, and is very good at what he does. As Gekko begins to recognize this, he realizes that, although Winnie has never accepted her father, through Moore he could figure out a way to get her back in his life.

As his mentor and boss, Louis Zabel (Frank Langella) has always known Moore as a hard worker and took him almost as his son. Moore learns a lot about the stresses that come from working with stocks, when Zabel begins to stress out about possibly having to give shares away.

Director Oliver Stone plays a big part in making this movie the best it could be. As a master of controversial subjects, it is no wonder he is said to push his actors to Oscar-nominated performances. He was the director of the first “Wall Street” movie that appeared in theaters in 1987. As a director, he played a big part in choosing the actors to play each part.

This is a movie that has to be watched consciously because the actors reference a lot about stocks and the economy. The actors fit the personalities of the characters they were portraying. LeBeouf does well as a businessman who is very driven in becoming successful. Michael Douglas also plays his part, as a person only caring about money and the “game.” As a man who knows a lot about the industry he is in, Gekko plays his part well in showing his ability to intimidate Moore and the rest of Wall Street. He definitely scared me and I could see how the characters and audience alike were easily convinced by his deceiving tactics.

I liked that the movie doesn’t just deal with money and the stock exchange. I’m into the romance, too, and of course this movie has conflicts dealing with a romantic relationship.  Although many of the characters play their roles tremendously, I feel as though it is just another movie in that the audience expects the situations to happen before they do. Likewise, the other conflict is a relationship between a father and daughter, and the audience is constantly wondering if Gekko will do what it takes to gain his daughter’s trust back.

This movie deals with the hard times we are living in right now, and I like how some of our “real world” issues come into play during this movie.  “Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps” gets you thinking. With two well-known actors playing the main characters, it definitely fulfilled its expectations.