Archive for the ‘Demi Moore’ Category

Margin Call

23 Oct

Margin Call — Directed and Written by J.C. Chandor. Suspense. A huge Wall Street company teeters on the brink of collapse and a crisis of conscience. 105 minutes Color 2011

* * * * *

The infuriatingly dull title for this very exciting film detours one away, only to be pulled back toward it by the presence of a superb cast. What great actors we have in this world, and all of them are at the peak of their game here. If there were Oscars for casting, this movie should win one. The focal character is played by Kevin Spacey, in the part of a management director of a trading company. He learns that the company is in dire jeopardy, and his moral dilemma is to find a way out that is on the up and up. The film begins with the ritual execution of half the staff of the company including its risk director, played with uncanny reserve by Stanley Tucci. His novice assistants follow through on his work and discover the fatal state of the company. Simon Baker-Denney plays the cold head of operations and his cold partner by Demi Moore. The announcement of Moore’s firing is a beautiful piece of acting by her, an infinitesimal response. Fabulous. The boys who uncover the disease are well played by Zachary Quinto and Penn Badgley, each of them given key scenes of resolution which they meet perfectly. Paul Bettany plays the sardonic observer-of-it-all and brings to the inner circle the necessary presence of a lack of naiveté. Everyone knows what it’s really about. The suspense builds like black cream being whipped – until the arrival of Jeremy Irons, the pivotal character of the piece, at which point suspense stops. Irons is beyond excellent in the role of the owner of the company. He’s an actor who pulls focus with every inhalation and who can carry a film easily. The problem is in the writing of his part, although he is so good at delivering it as is, that you cannot tell. The fact is that the role of a pivotal character depends on whether he will turn to the right or to the left, and our not knowing which until at last. To create this second level of suspense the picture must refocus this character’s decision on his relations with the characters we have already met and thus postpone it, and the script does not do that. We are faced instead with the question of will people be fired or not, which is jumping the gun which the Irons character holds in his hand. Instead the focus turns to the Spacey character and makes him the focal character, which he is not. But even then the story is quite fascinating and the writing even in its miscalculation is quite fascinating and the playing of the scenes is quite fascinating. Somehow each of these actors has the ability and the material to create characters, no matter how cold, no matter how little we know about them, with whom we can identify. One of the reasons for that is that none of them have private lives. It’s touching. They are all and only worker bees. None more so than the Irons character who can do nothing whatsoever in life but go out and gather more honey and never question it at all.




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