Welcome to the ultimate cinematic journey for financial enlightenment! In the world of finance, where numbers and strategies often dominate, movies can offer a unique and entertaining perspective that transcends the boundaries of textbooks and spreadsheets.
In this curated list, we present 12 compelling movies that go beyond entertainment, offering valuable lessons and insights to level up your finance game. From tales of Wall Street excess to gripping stories of personal finance triumphs, each film on this list promises to entertain, educate, and inspire.
1. Margin Call
Margin Call is a movie that chronicles the early stages of the 2008 financial crisis, where an investment bank faces collapse after taking on debts too large to handle – and has to make some tough choices under pressure to avoid going bankrupt altogether.
2. The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World
3. Too Big to Fail
4. Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room
5. Capitalism: A Love Story
A Love Story explores the negative effects of corporate greed and the global economic crisis on American lives. The movie highlights the evils of capitalism in America and the heavy toll it takes on the middle class and poor. The movie begins with CCTV footage of a bank robbery to expose capitalism at work.
6. Inside job
Inside Job is a 2010 documentary film by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Charles Ferguson. The film analyzes the 2008 financial crisis and explores the role of financial institutions and their practices. The documentary includes research and interviews with financiers, politicians, journalists, and academics.
7. The Corporation
The film presents convincing and realistic perceptions on the origin, nature, and impacts of the modern institutions.
8. Money and Speed: Inside the Black Box
A thriller based on actual events that takes you to the heart of our automated financial world. Based on interviews with those directly involved and data visualizations up to the millisecond, it reconstructs the fastest and deepest U.S. stock market plunge ever.
9. Wolf of Wall Street
In 1987, Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio) takes an entry-level job at a Wall Street brokerage firm. By the early 1990s, while still in his 20s, Belfort founds his own firm, Stratton Oakmont. Together with his trusted lieutenant (Jonah Hill) and a merry band of brokers, Belfort makes a huge fortune by defrauding wealthy investors out of millions. However, while Belfort and his cronies partake in a hedonistic brew of sex, drugs and thrills, the SEC and the FBI close in on his empire of excess.
10. Boiler room
Welcome to the infamous “boiler room” — where twenty something millionaires are made overnight. Here, in the inner sanctum of a fly-by-night brokerage firm, hyper-aggressive young stock jocks peddle to unsuspecting buyers over the phone — and are rewarded with mansions, Ferraris and more luxury toys than they know what to do with. In this unassuming Long Island enclave, Gen Xers chase the green at breakneck speeds, sometimes one step ahead of the law.
11. The Retirement Gamble
The Retirement Gamble reveals how fees, self-dealing, and kickbacks bring great profits to Wall Street while imperiling the prospects of a secure future for individuals. The film questions who has the consumer’s best interests in mind, and whether there is a better way to manage our retirements.
Floored is a 2009 documentary film that follows the lives of Chicago floor traders and how they’ve been affected by the shift to electronic trading. The film is about the people and businesses on the Chicago trading floors and how the transition to electronic trading has impacted them
As the credits roll on our cinematic financial adventure, we hope these 12 movies have left an indelible mark on your understanding of money matters. Whether you were captivated by the high-stakes drama of Wall Street or inspired by the resilience portrayed in personal finance stories, each film has contributed to your journey of leveling up your finance game.
Remember, financial wisdom can come from the most unexpected places, and these movies have proven that the silver screen is no exception. As you navigate the complexities of the financial world, carry these cinematic lessons with you, and may your financial future be as bright as the stories you’ve witnessed on this unique filmic odyssey.