The Banking world has always confused me.
All talks about stocks, bonds, and mortages have always hurt my head. There is a lot of talk about those in The Big Short, but it is dumbed down just enough to keep someone as clueless to banking as me to be entertained (though I was still a little confused).
The first success of the film is the casting. Christian Bale stars as Michael Burry, who is a genius but socially awkward (we learn from a childhood accident). He is one of four outsiders who would go to determine the stock market crash that would be remembered as the worst since the great depression. The other three are Jared Vennett (Ryan Gosling, who also narrates the story), Mark Baum (Steve Carrell) and Ben Rickertt (Brad Pitt).
This is a hard movie to follow for some. Still, I am glad I stayed, because it is handled with wit, humor, and respect. It is no surprise the four recently mentioned actors give great performances (mainly Bale and Carrell). What surprised me the most was that this was from director Adam Mckay (mainly known for doing films like Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgandy and Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.) This is actually the first film he has made not to star Will Ferrell at all.
Parents, this does have some sexual themes/ nudity in it. There are two scenes in strip clubs. One at the beginning (very short) and one later on (which does go into detail, although the character goes there to talk about money, nothing else). There is also swearing. In short (no pun intended), the movie does deserve its R rating.
I will end by saying that one thing I enjoyed a lot about the film is that it knows a lot of people in the audience will be confused by the terms used. They solve this by simply bringing in random stars to explain them to us (I wish they used more). Who are these stars? I would never ruin that for you.
Overall: Three and a Half Stars *** 1/2