Winter 2012 Features series
Sunday, January 8, 2012 at 4:00pm
Sunday, January 8, 2012 at 7:00pm
Directed by J.C. Chandor
Screenplay by J.C. Chandor
Starring Kevin Spacey, Stanley Tucci, and Zachary Quinto
Rated NR ·
In the wake of the crisis that rocked the world’s financial markets in 2008, a lot of people asked that same question of the engineers of the disaster: How does a man confront the fact of failure, a failure that might not only cost him his job, but cost millions of people their entire livelihoods? J.C. Chandor’s riveting and deeply-felt thriller Margin Call takes us where no film has taken us before: inside the heart of one of Wall Street’s too-big-to-fail financial titans, a sharply-etched snapshot of a world and a group of people on the brink of collapse.
Unfolding over the course of roughly 24 hours, Margin Call takes us from the moment of dawning suspicion that something is terribly wrong, to the full recognition of the scope of the disaster, to the sifting through the wreckage—both personal and financial–when the final bell rings and the “bloodbath” of trading comes to a close. From junior analysts to CEO titans, every member of the corporate hierarchy must come to grips with the nightmare-come-true, and their own roles in creating it.
Rising to the task of bringing this story to life is an all-star ensemble that includes Kevin Spacey, Paul Bettany, Jeremy Irons, Zachary Quinto, Penn Badgley, Simon Baker, Mary McDonnell, Demi Moore, and Stanly Tucci.
While it is possible to say, without exaggeration, that the financial crisis has affected virtually everyone on the planet, the roots of Margin Call emerge from a highly personal place for first-time writer/director J.C. Chandor. “I think a lot of people have wondered where I sort of gained a fundamental understanding of this industry, not having worked in it,” he shares. “But my father worked in this business, for Merrill Lynch, for almost 40 years, so I certainly had a fundamental knowledge of the people in this world and most importantly had a strong understanding of what and who they cared most about.”
“Spacey is mesmerizing as Sam, a weary, aging lion losing his appetite for antelope. And Irons plays the villain with magisterial ease.” – Stephen Cole, Globe and Mail
“The latest in a string of dramas seeking to take the pulse of white-collar America, Margin Call is a methodical, coolly absorbing boardroom thriller set on the eve of the 2008 economic collapse. Unfolding over a tense brief period at a Wall Street investment firm where drastic damage-control measures are afoot, J.C. Chandor’s precocious writing-directing debut is fastidious, smart and more than a bit portentous as it probes the human costs of unchecked greed. ” – Justin Chang, Variety