The Movie: 9/10
Seriously, what will I say about The Wolf of Wall Street that will surprise you? It’s DiCaprio so digging him is not a surprise. It’s a drama with a humor slant, love that. Scorsese isn’t one of my favorites but I expect good things, not a surprise. Jonah Hill didn’t make me clench my teeth until they broke out of my head like he normally does..OHHHH there we go! Surprise surprise, if nothing else matters in this review (and we know it all does) this is the thing. Not so much that I was turned around on my opinion of an actor I have previously, most righteously despised every time I saw his face on the screen, but that I had a movie watching experience that doesn’t happen all the time. I lost the actor and saw the character. That adds so much to a movie. He’s not the only one, the whole case is amazing, for sure. DiCaprio is, of course, giving us all the best stuff this time around. he’s charming but horrible, smart but horrible, driven but horrible, and last but not least, horrible and horrible. I mean his character is horrible, clearly. Let’s talk about this character.
The Wolf of Wall Street is a very specific type of guy, and loosely based on one specifically. He was a wheeler-dealer on Wall Street, or off Wall Street at times, and as we understand him from the movie is a man of very very very slim moral center. I’m not judging. He’s just a dickhead who makes a lot of money and proceeds to live a life that only a dickhead would want. I mean, truly, I never ever ever ever want a boat, a yacht, a mansion, a sports car, jewelry, fancy clothes, none of it. So, to think he’s just trying to live the American Dream is an insult. He’s just a dickhead who wants to have stuff, lots and lots of stuff, and do lots and lots of drugs along the way. It’s not much more complicated than that. Along the way he might drop a few inspirational gems for like-minded idiots lapping at his dog bowl of indulgence, but other than that he’s a one trick pony. He smooth talks, makes the cash, and walks away. DiCaprio brought him to life in a way that does make you almost want to root for him from time to time, and then pulls you back with so much as a glance or wrinkle of his snively nose.
Margo Robbie is fantastic. She is his wife, and not only that, she’s a whole person…more or less. Yes, she’s the hot chick he seduces and later marries because she’s hot, and she in turn spends lots of cash. These things are not the most deep facets of her personality, no. What Robbie brings is a sense that this young woman has a whole life behind the glitz and glam she wants to have now. She brings a toughness and no bullshit attitude that would not have come from being a little precious princess her whole life. I think Margo Robbie is the best part of the whole movie.
Hill, oh Jonah Hill, what will I do with you? We are at level ground now. You were down there, see, way down there in the pit of movie actor grime. I dreaded to see your face, hear your voice, hear your name mentioned in relation to any movie I was going to watch. It is what it is, I didn’t like you….and then you stepped beside that booth and offered to quit your job with those teeth and that vibe you created with your character, and I was hooked. It’s exhausting to try to avoid someone in the Hollywood family when one watches as many movies as I do, so I am please and relieved to say I am now not dreading you anymore. Great compliment, I know.
Overall this movie took me on a ride with this guy who I really didn’t like but couldn’t stop watching. He is everything wrong with capitalism and blind indulgent consumerism, and yet he tells a compelling story of his rise and fall. Scorsese pulls every bit of grit and humor from moments when you don’t want one or the other but once it’s out there you are amazed at the balance he puts together. Thinking about it, I could go watch it again right now. THAT is high praise indeed!
- The Wolf Pack – It’s quite obvious a super-duper directors cut edition of The Wolf Of Wall Street is coming sometime in the near future. But for now we get this bare bones edition with a single 17 minute featurette, it’s quite a good featurette with lots of interviews but still left me wanting more.
- DVD & UV Digital Copy
Cover Art and Menus: 6/10
We get a fine cover I might consider having as a mini poster, and a menu that is pretty cool with some artwork that draws us some images of the movie.
Audio & Video: 9/10
Paramount have a striking looking 1080P AVC transfer that is about as lavish and over the top as the subject matter of the movie. Detail is incredible just look at the thread in any of DiCaprio’s suits or the whiteness of Jonah Hill’s false teeth. Film grain is intact and everything has a lush orangey feeling that makes the film feel otherworldly at times.
Audio is presented using the DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 lossless codec and is impressive but not overwhelming. There were times I was sure I had not turned my subwoofer or surround speakers on. But during chapter 20 which features a very stormy sea everything comes alive and you know that the 5.1 is working as intended. Wolf is a very talky film so bombastic moments such as these are few and far between, that is not to say the Blu-Ray does not deliver IT DOES in spades.
Overall Score 8/10