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Take the Money and Run

Twenty-three years after the first movie, Wall Street cashes in

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Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, the sequel to the 1987 hit, pretty much plays like director Oliver Stone’s strained attempt to personalize the stock market crash of 2008. It mostly centers on the relationship between Jacob (Shia LeBeouf) and Winnie (Carey Mulligan). But before they can marry, Jacob hopes to patch up the stressed relationship between Winnie and her father, the original Wall Street’s Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas), who’s just been released from prison and back in the public eye. Jacob, an up-and-coming broker, befriends Gordon and they begin “trading” information: Jacob tells Gordon about Winnie, and Gordon offers Jacob advice on how to handle Bretton James (Josh Brolin), a slimy hedge-fund manager. You know Gordon is eventually going to screw over Jacob; you just don’t know how he’s going to do it. Even though the acting is terrific throughout, the movie tries to do too many things, which doesn’t leave much room for the great Douglas or any new insight on the catastrophic economic downturn that’s still affecting the nation.

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