It’s been a while since my last movie review, mostly because I have not seen a movie all that blog worthy. I could write about the latest Star wars but I still need to watch a second or third time to fully grasp how it fits with the rest of the movies. I recently re-watched the first three Mission Impossible movie, and there are a few things that I could write about. That being said I wanted to write about “The Big Short”, the movie based on the economic collapse of 2007-2008. I realize it came a while ago, but hey, I did not see it until last Sunday.
I would warn about spoilers and such but then again, if you hadn’t heard about the mortgage crisis that nearly destroyed the world’s economy, maybe you should go back to the rock you have been living under, for your own sake.
The movie’s premise might seem like a boring subject and suggest that it would be full of technical terms that you would need 2o years of banking experience to understand. It is actually quite the contrary. It is actually very educative and self aware. All the major technical aspect are explained in simple english via several celebrity cameos, such as Anthony Bourdain and Margot Robbie, and one of the characters frequently break the fourth wall to clarify certain aspects of the story.
What I find really disturbing about this movie is that everything they talk about actually happened. It’s like some kind some dark lovecraftian secret that will alter the way you look at the world forever. Some of the stuff that happen is so incredibly stupid, that I find it hard to believe that no had the common sense to do something about it. There is that brilliant scene were Steve Carell’s character and his associate go to florida to investigate whether or not there was a housing bubble. They go to a pair of mortgage brokers who are, for a lack of a better word, utterly unscrupulous but not necessarily in malevolent way but more in a incompetent way. They were the perfect stereotype of the sports Bro who took economic classes in college in hope to create so ‘get rich quick’ scheme. truly terrifying that people would trust someone like them for such a big investment.
Another nightmare inducing fact shared by the movie was that there was that Credit rating agencies was essentially give away rating for fees because they didn’t want to lose business rather then actually verifying the content of what the banks were asking to rated. There was essentially no third party control on the risky investment the banks were doing. Even the SEC was apparently not paying attention to the banks because of budget cuts… truly terrifying. They even suggest that the banks realized what was about to happen in early 2007 and tried to sweep it under the rug before anyone found out.
I think it is one of those must see movie because it makes a great PSA about the dangers of uncontrolled investments and corporate greed. It would help raise awareness and help push for some reforms and prevent something similar in the future.