Movie critics and financial professionals are abuzz about Margin Call, the movie that outlines 24 hours at an investment bank at the beginning of the financial crisis as they realise most of their assets are becoming worthless.Chock full of financial jargon, it is being dubbed “the greatest Wall Street movie that the public is going to hate” (by us). But at the same time, it is also a compelling peek into the humanity present in us all (yes, even bankers).
Business Insider had the chance to catch up with two Wall Streeters right after watching the movie and got some of their thoughts.
The two had general praise for the way the story was told and the portrayals of the Wall Street executive hierarchy. There was also some lively debate on the purpose of Seth Bregman – Penn Badgley’s still-wet-behind-the-ears character (a sympathetic icon or unnecessary comic relief?), and if there was substance behind Will Emerson’s (Paul Bettany) impassioned speech on how those in the financial industry has allowed the regular people to live lavish lives.
They also pointed out some things that they thought the movie got wrong:
1. According to the two Wall Streeters, risk analysts don’t work on the same floor as traders. In Margin Call, Peter Sullivan (Zachary Quinto) and Bregman are risk analysts, but they work on the same floor as traders, attend their meetings and report to Sam Rogers (Kevin Spacey), who’s head of trading at the firm.
2. The glowing screens of hundreds of Bloomberg terminals is a ubiquitous backdrop in the beginning of the film – when Sullivan is working on his risk equation at night. But apparently, one banker told us that most employees at his bank turn off their terminals when they leave work. (Who knew they were environmentally conscious?)
The fact that these 2 tiny details are all they found inaccurate says a lot about how good the movie is. The list of what Wall Street 2 got right about the financial crisis might be shorter.
Have more thoughts and input on the movie, or disagree with what’s been said? Feel free to share your thoughts with us.