Miss Saigon, Part The First: A Digression on the 1980s, Sub-Section/Pre-Note: WALL STREET

Just briefly, since I watched both these films a week after Miss Saigon closed, so they don’t necessarily apply though they will help with future context. Within a day, I watched Enron: The Smartest Guys In the Room and Oliver Stone’s Wall Street.

Both are conventional stories of a rise in the financial business marketplace, on the trading floor, in the corporate hive, based on the pure capitalist fantasy mindset, at the expense of the little people. Rises so meteoric, duh, that they seem to be rising as if only to fall.

Wall Street, one of Stone’s earlier melodramas, repeats Platoon almost exactly in its essentials: pitting the charismatic demon dad vs. the honest blue-collar angel dad, with Charlie Sheen still struggling at the center and the cartoonish New York actor John C. McGinley as his foil. Stone is absorbed with the trappings (high class hookers with big hairsprayed bangs? Gold lame splashes on the wall? Home sushi and white wine? Darryl Hannah as interior decorator in Marilyn Monroe dress and Charlie Sheen in argyle sweater? So 80s!) and predicts the junk bond scandals of a few years later.

The Enron documentary was great–better than 95% of the liberal kook documentaries floating about these days. Beautifully shot, the story very well told–of course, the source material was a rigorously researched book, and they pieced together the footage cleverly. You can’t make Skilling or Fastow or Lay sexy–they come off as what they are, entitled buffoons.

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One response to “Miss Saigon, Part The First: A Digression on the 1980s, Sub-Section/Pre-Note: WALL STREET

  1. Wall Street is fucking great, the FOOD images are so 80s. Esp. the huge plate of steak with an egg (gross) when Charlie Sheen first signs on with Gordon Gecko and then that stupid nigiri rice mold that Daryl Hannah uses during their dinner party-it’s like a yuppie sushi pasta maker…so awesome.

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