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According to the discipline of anthropology, the term culture represents the customs, values, morals, laws and rituals which a particular group or society shares. Originally, the studio wanted Warren Beatty to play Gekko, but he was not interested; Stone, meanwhile, wanted Richard Gere , but Gere passed on the role.
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He constantly attacks big business, money, mandatory drug screening, greedy manufacturers, and anything that he sees as a threat to his union. The conflict between Gekko's relentless pursuit of wealth and Carl Fox's leftward leanings form the basis of the film's subtext. The producers of the film use Carl as their voice in the film, a voice of reason amid the creative destruction brought about by Gekko's unrestrained personal philosophy.
A significant scene in the film is a speech by Gekko to a shareholders' meeting of Teldar Paper, a company he is planning to take over. Stone uses this scene to give Gekko, and by extension, the Wall Street raiders he personifies, the chance to justify their actions, portraying himself as a liberator of the company value from the ineffective and excessively compensated executives.
The first part, where Gekko complains that the company's management owns less than three percent of its stock, and that it has too many vice presidents, is taken from similar speeches and comments made by Carl Icahn about companies he was trying to take over. I want you to know that. I think greed is healthy. You can be greedy and still feel good about yourself. Wall Street is not a wholesale criticism of capitalism, but of the cynical, quick-buck culture of the s. In one scene, Gekko scoffs at Bud Fox's question as to the moral value of hard work, quoting the example of his Gekko's father, who worked hard his entire life only to die in debt.
Lou Mannheim, the film's archetypal mentor, says early in the film, that "good things sometimes take time", referring to IBM and Hilton —in contrast, Gekko's "Greed is Good" credo typifies the short-term view prevalent in the s. In his review for The New York Times , Vincent Canby , while quite critical of the film overall, praised Douglas' work as "the funniest, canniest performance of his career".
The movie can be followed by anybody, because the details of stock manipulation are all filtered through transparent layers of greed. Most of the time we know what's going on. All of the time, we know why". But as long as he keeps his players in venal, perpetual motion, it is great scary fun to watch him work out".
Stone doesn't trust the time-honored story line, supplementing the obvious moral with plenty of soapboxery". The "quintessential financial high-roller's attire"  of Michael Douglas in the movie, designed by Alan Flusser , was emulated in the s by yuppies.
Wall Street enjoyed renewed interest in the film in when the cover of Newsweek magazine asked, "Is Greed Dead? Once I saw it I knew that I wanted to get into such and such business. I wanted to be like Gordon Gekko". Enron is a fiction, in a sense, in the same way that Gordon Gekko's buying and selling was a fiction Kenny Lay —he's the new Gordon Gekko".
A 20th-anniversary edition was released on September 18, New extras include an on-camera introduction by Stone, extensive deleted scenes , "Greed is Good" featurettes, and interviews with Michael Douglas and Martin Sheen. In reviewing the film's sequel 23 years later, Variety noted that though the original film was "intended as a cautionary tale on the pitfalls of unchecked ambition and greed, Stone's original instead had the effect of turning Douglas' hugely charismatic and Oscar-winning villain into a household name and boardroom icon -- an inspiration to the very power players and Wall Street wannabes for whom he set such a terrible example".
The film is recognized by American Film Institute in these lists:. The film would also focus on Gekko, recently released from prison and re-entering a much more chaotic financial world than the one he once oversaw.
But by April , 20th Century Fox confirmed that the sequel was already in development and announced that Oliver Stone would direct. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For the computer, see Wallstreet 1. For the building, see 1 Wall Street. Retrieved 22 March Greed is Not Good". Retrieved October 17, A Biography of Oliver Stone".
Life after Wall Street ". Retrieved December 10, Archived from the original PDF on February 26, Retrieved February 26, Retrieved October 9, Retrieved January 3, The Globe and Mail. The Making of Wall Street ". Archived from the original on December 7, Retrieved March 18, When Hollywood came to town: Retrieved March 5, Archived from the original on October 10, Retrieved July 3, Economics in Popular Film course.
Retrieved March 17, No question writer-director Oliver Stone feels the same way, as he presents this tale of wealth acquisition at its very apex, lower Manhattan circa In practically every frame showcasing the opulent world Gekko travels can be glimpsed beggars, fishermen, window washers, people who never will have access to the white-collar lifestyles their lowly status perversely enables for others.
For some, this zero-sum take of America clouds their enjoyment of "Wall Street" the movie. You don't have to buy Shakespeare's version of history in "Richard III" to enjoy the morally bankrupt character at its center, and you don't need to adopt Stone's philosophy to enjoy Gekko. In fact Stone's attitude about the Street, presented here as a kind of Hogarth caricature, helps make the film so entertaining.
He captures the scenes of floor trading and calls and puts in journalistic detail, but leaves room for the human equation. And he has fun, a lot of fun, especially with Gekko, a character who makes you laugh with his pithy comments even as he sets about using poor Fox as a human ashtray.
On an upcoming charity event for the Bronx Zoo: They hate people, but they love animals. Stone's father was a stockbroker, and so the director takes special care to show us that all Wall Streeters aren't bad. There's Hal Holbrook, almost too saintly and somewhat detached from day-to-day business of his brokerage house to the point he seems a slumming B-school don.
McGinley delivers a standout performance as a vulgar, greedy friend of Fox's who we nevertheless find ourselves sympathetic to, especially as Fox ditches him for Gekko.
But of course it's really Gekko's world, as we watch him at his desk, punching telephone-line buttons and encouraging subordinates to "rip their throats out," checking his blood pressure with one hand while smoking a cigarette in the other. His centerpiece moment, his speech to the stockholders at Teldar Paper, is a compelling soliloquy not because it showcases his brutality but because it allows him a chance to explain his philosophy in a way that sounds logical, even honorable, until you think through the implications.
That's Stone's screen writing at its best. Sheen is also masterful in his role, playing the naive waif who wants to swim with the sharks and thus giving Douglas daylight to run. Too bad there's a tacked-on romance that never really works, in part because the character of Darien Taylor is not well developed, in part because Darryl Hannah hadn't yet met Quentin Tarantino. The ending is a bit too neat, and loses the subtlety that makes the rest of the film so good.
But the heck with subtlety when you have Gordon Gekko. Douglas is the reason for watching "Wall Street," and a terrific one. Just watch the way he looks at Bud, eyebrows raised to hold a pregnant silence, or enjoys the discomfort of his arbitrager-rival Sir Larry a solid Terence Stamp. Stone knew what he had here, and makes the most of it. As a twisted morality tale, "Wall Street" is a thrilling, scenic ride down a dark and dangerous road. Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.
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