Tag Archives: Pj Byrne

Review: The Wolf of Wall Street

Wolf_of_Wall_Street_Poster“The Wolf of Wall Street” lets you relish in unparalleled no holds barred debauchery while increasingly disillusioning the fun and games with the nasty reality of the situation along the way.

The film is based on the true story of Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio), a guy who kicked off his career on Wall Street with the best intentions, but threw all of his morals out the window in exchange for money, women and drugs. Jordan founded Stratton Oakmont and reveled in the lucrative business of selling fraudulent stocks at his costumers’ expense, but there was just so long he could carry on making scenes, crashing cars and drowning himself in Quaaludes before the FBI caught on.

Having read the real Belfort’s memoir, I walked into Martin Scorsese’s feature adaptation knowing what the character is capable of, but apparently I wasn’t capable of imagining the true extent of Belfort’s antics while reading the book because on screen, the behavior is above and beyond. There’s no reason to like the guy. He cheats on his wives, robs innocent people of their hard-earned money and is absolutely wasted the large majority of the movie, but at the same time, it’s so easy to understand why he gets away with it for so long. He’s a total charmer and an absolute blast to hang out with.

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Review: Final Destination 5

There’s no beginning this review without setting the scene from a personal standpoint; I am a diehard Final Destination fan. I’ve seen them all countless times and love them all to death (no pun intended), that is until The Final Destination tainted my beloved franchise. Sure, it’s tough to keep a plot fresh four times over, but drowning it in 3D technology is no way to spice it up and Final Destination 5 proves it. No, it doesn’t solidify the third dimension as anything more than a gimmick, but the film has more than enough in terms of the performances, visuals and smart writing to make this an incredibly valiant and successful effort and an installment that I welcome into the franchise with open arms.

The employees of Presage Paper are going on a company retreat. Dennis (David Koechner) is the man in charge, but his second in command, Peter (Miles Fisher), does the honors of rounding everyone up and ushering them onto the bus. He pops a squat next to his intern girlfriend, Candice (Ellen Wroe), while Nathan (Arlen Escarpeta) gets comfortable a few seats away, happily away from the factory underlings who don’t appreciate having a youngster as a boss. Sam (Nicholas D’Agosto) spends the beginning of the ride sulking as the love of his life, Molly (Emma Bell), opted to end things just before hitting the road. There’s also Isaac, who, well, would rather talk to his many ladies on the phone than socialize with his co-workers and Olivia (Jacqueline MacInnes Wood) who doesn’t appreciate how her glasses ruin her rock star style.

However, once the bus creeps onto a suspension bridge that’s under construction, none of those petty issues matter, as the structure begins to crumble and everyone just has to do whatever they can to survive. But this is the Final Destination franchise we’re talking about; none of them do, that is until Nick wakes up from his premonition realizing no blood has been spilled just yet and he’s got one shot at getting his friends, particularly Molly, off the bus. If only he knew the consequences of his actions, Sam might have opted to ride the bus to the netherworld. Instead, he makes it out alive along with Molly, Peter, Candice, Nathan, Olivia, Isaac and Dennis, putting them all on Death’s list, sending them straight towards even more gruesome demises.

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