x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

Michael Douglas is on fine from in Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, but the film doesn't live up to the original

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

Director: Oliver Stone

Starring: Michael Douglas, Shia LaBeouf, Carey Mulligan

It is 2001 and having just been released from a lengthy stint in prison for insider training, Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas) is looking rather more dishevelled than when we last saw him.

As he is handed back his belongings, which include a money clip (empty) and a mobile phone of brick-like proportions, the message is clear: times have changed. Seven years on and true to form, Gekko has re-established himself; he's once again full of swagger, plugging his book Is Greed Good? and warning of the imminent economic collapse.

Among his reluctant admirers is Jake Moore (Shia LaBeouf) an idealistic young Wall Street banker who just happens to be engaged to Gekko's estranged daughter Winnie (Carey Mulligan). When the company that Jake works for is destroyed by Bretton James (Josh Brolin) - the film's main corporate monster - and his mentor and father figure Lewis Zabel (Frank Langella) mysteriously dies, he turns to Gekko for inside information. Gekko doesn't do things for free, though, and Jake is charged with reuniting father and daughter. It comes as little surprise that this film doesn't live up to the original - how could it, really, with the weight of expectation being so high?

Douglas is in fine form (the zeal for cold, hard cash might not be as rampant as it was, but it's certainly still there), but LaBeouf can't quite match him in the charisma stakes. It is the slow pace of this film that lets it down the most, though; momentum is slow to build up, the action drags and the script is rather heavy on financial jargon.

This combination means that it is far from riveting.