Further confirmation that the world is indeed a fucking awful place…
Instead of learning fucking Geography or simultaneous equations or other such useless bilge, children should instead have at least two hours a week devoted to reading material and videos of cultural significance that allow the opportunity to present a realistic view of the world we live in today.
Bowling for Columbine would be one such film, Inside Job would be another and The Big Short would absolutely have to be included. Whilst the details of the financial crash of 2008 that saw millions of people unemployed, homeless and ultimately dead are readily available, it is refreshing to see those details presented in a way that is suitable for mass consumption.
The final message of The Big Short is the kicker. Despite us living in the information age, average people choose to believe millionaire politicians and accept print media owned by millionaires as fact, despite the fact that both politicians and print media have been proven to be liars time and time again. It is this apathy and anti intellectualism mixed with bankers happily defrauding, cheating and lying that led to the banking crisis in the first place. It is this same lazy acceptance that allows ‘immigrants and poor people’ to bear the brunt of peoples anger even after the bankers used tax payers money to continue to earn their fucking obscene bonuses even after they had been bailed out by the government…
…But I digress. The Big Short is not just a fucking important film, it is laugh out loud funny, it (mostly) simplifies a concept that is purposefully obtuse and is well acted across the board. Ryan Gosling made me laugh literally every time he opened his mouth and it is great to see him back on our screens after a two year absence. I didn’t care for Steve Carrell in Foxcatcher and I wasn’t sure about his scenery chewing entrance here but he did win me round by the end, with a convincingly righteous and angry performance. Christian Bale continues his departure from Batman with another nuanced and impressive turn. The supporting cast are too numerous to mention individually but let me say that The Big Short felt like a HBO production where everyone with a speaking line is always at the top of their game.
None of this could have worked without the incredibly refreshing and slick direction from Adam McKay. Whilst McKay has made some of the best comedies of the last 20 years, he has never shown anything to suggest that he had a film of this quality in him. Every risk he takes pays off and he consistently pushes to keep what could be a sombre and boring film exciting and fun.
The Big Short is only a film and it won’t change anything because the corruption and greed of both governments and bankers is so entrenched into society that change is impossible. That doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t be lauded as an incredible piece of art and an all round massive fucking success though.