Synopsis and credits: Read on IMDB
Hedge fun manager Michael Burry discovers that the housing market in the U.S is very unstable and realizes he can profit from this by creating a credit default swap market that allows him to bet against the current system. When trader Jared Vennett hears of what Burry is doing, he decides to get in on the action and involves another hedge fun manager, Mark Baum. Baum soon realizes this broken system will have terrible repercussions, most of which will result in the collapse of the economy
Well, I never thought I’d find something related to finance and economics so interesting. The movie covers a very complex, convoluted topic (the 2007-2010 financial meltdown) in a very entertaining way. It goes through great lengths to explain the journey that led through the crisis, focusing mainly on those players who discovered the system was deeply flawed and expected the “bubble” to burst pretty soon. Using first person narration (in the form of character Jared Vennett played by Ryan Gosling who often breaks the fourth wall) and interspersed scenes of celebrities and other famous individuals explaining key concepts of this very unstable system (such as what credit default swaps are and collateralized debt obligations – CDOs).
The film is an adaptation from Michael Lewis’ book The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine. If that name sounds familiar, that’s because this is the author of that other famous book adapted into a film, Moneyball (also a seemingly bpring topic turned into an interesting plot). Both movies were produced by Plan B, Brad Pitt’s production company. Pitt is also in the movie playing the role of retired banker Ben Rickert. The film also stars Christian Bale as Michael Burry and Steve Carell as Mark Baum. All top notch performances particularly Bale and Carell, the latter showing once again he can do dramatic roles as well as comedic ones.
There are a few moments when you might lose some of the details; the whole thing was, after all, running broken for decades before someone took notice. But overall, this is a very interesting film worth the watch!