“Wall Street” Is a 1987 Cinematic Drama Directed by Oliver Stone

Running Head: WALL STREET FILM 1987 1

Wall Street film 1987





The American economy had for a long time dependent on the progress of the Wall Street. From the infamous Great Depression, the US economy had grown fairly well courtesy of increased industrial production and reduced trading activities in other industrial powers that were destroyed by the World Wars. However, the situation took a negative shift when the spending habits of the consumers changed. On top of that, when the wars were over, there was an increase in the industrial production in the industrial powers that had reconstructed themselves. Political changes and inflation also influenced the shift in the manner the consumers viewed their spending habits.

The Wall Street has witnessed diverse opportunities since 1970. Concerning political economy, the Wall Street has proved to be the global financial capital, and it has served as the U.S financial capital source, and it has had the exceptional power to affect other nations. In other words, the Wall Street was able to determine financial stability globally because many shareholders were willing to own stock in prime investments through value movement (Davis, 2009). Since 1970, the Wall Street has witnessed highs and lows, and all these can be attributed to both political and economic changes within the US. There was a rise in the employment, economic activities, and corporate profitability in the financial sector with finance accounting to about 15% of the total GDP compared to the 10% that had been witnessed by the time World War was over.

The progressive growth was as a result of speculative innovations and financial globalization that was seen during the era of uncertainty on both inflation and regulations. Another cause of the growth was due to the unexpected rise of unregulated institutions of banking, which saw was characterized by large asset accumulation in the conventional banking systems as compared to those in the securities markets. The bulk of American economy was controlled through borrowing and buying (Greider, 1987).After 1973, there was a shift in the manner in which financialization was done with most transactions revolving around promoting stocks, debt pushing on an international scale, Ponzi schemes and speculative debt repayment. Despite the Great Recession of 2008, the Wall Street once again was boosted by the actual destruction of World Trade Center in 2001 to become an economic force to reckon with the international market world.

The film titled Wall Street that was produced in 1987 used characters to give highlights of how different stakeholder was engaging one another in pursuit of being at the top in share and wealth acquisition. Firstly, Bud Fox, Charlie Sheen, symbolized young or new entrants in the trading world who were despite acquiring wealth from the stock market through all means possible. Through his interactions with other successful stock brokers, he was out to use all methods available to ensure that he controlled a large portion of the Wall Street market and became wealthy. The desire to become successful made him blind not to see any market malpractices like money corrupts (Levinson, 2012). Secondly, Gordon Gekko, Michael Douglas, was a real symbol of the few Wall Street traders who had observed the trend in market progress and had come to realize the best and worst practices that could be put in place to ensure maximum profitability in the stock exchange.

Through his speeches, Gekko informs the audience about the changes that had been witnessed in the market following different legislations that were introduced from time to time and they needed to buy more shares (Kelley, 2012). He publicly confronted various shareholders who had petite share ownership in different companies, yet they regarded themselves the key drivers of the economy. His aggressiveness made him outline the steps he was up to in ensuring that he continued to be the prominent shareholder within the Wall Street hence his remarks that greed was good. Thirdly, Bud Fox father, Martin Sheen symbolized the up rise of financial advisors in the American economy. Through his numerous advises to his son, Bud Fox, Sheen was playing the role of offering the best guidance to a new investor on the best practices that any investor had to undertake to become successful in the market.

Through the interactions and actions of different characters, the Wall Street movie clearly shows how the shift from blue-collar jobs or companies to Wall Street rise phenomena came about. Bud Fox was advised by his father to take over the management of his company, but the son declined citing his desire to take the path of Gekko, who was more wealthy and powerful due to the lucrative Wall Street market. Through the action of Bud, it was a clear illustration of how young investors were not interested in blue-collars jobs and companies in preference to the Wall Street, which seemed to promise high levels of both wealth and power.

One of the most memorable and credible quotes from Gekko is that he bet on sure things. Gekko said this after witnessing many people working on speculations rather than from the fundamental truth. The statement about betting on sure things was aimed at meaning that business was driven forward by speculations. To be effective in any business venture, prior preparation was mandatory and inevitable because, like any other kind of battle, the preparations were undertaken before the real engagement was the only determinant of whether the battle was to be won or lost. Gekko was explaining that prior planning and preparation was the only way forward towards achieving any business success, and speculation was the most contributing factor in business failure.


Davis, G. (2009). Managed by the markets. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Greider, W. (1987). Secrets of the temple. New York: Simon and Schuster.

Kelley, B. M. (2012). Reelpolitik ideologies in American political film. Lanham, Md: Lexington Books.

Levinson, J. R. (2012). The American success myth on film. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

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“Wall Street” Is a 1987 Cinematic Drama Directed by Oliver Stone. (2022, Feb 28). Retrieved from https://essaylab.com/essays/wall-street-is-a-1987-cinematic-drama-directed-by-oliver-stone

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