Niagara Gazette

Night & Day

December 30, 2013

CALLERI: 'The Wolf Of Wall Street' stirs up unexpected controversy

Niagara Gazette — “The Wolf Of Wall Street, director Martin Scorsese’s latest foray into biographical cinema, is a non-stop, pulsating adrenaline rush about Wall Street duplicity in the go-go 1990s as only Scorsese can deliver it.

Leonardo DiCaprio gives an Oscar-worthy performance as a corporate trader who fleeces those who are ripe to be fleeced; serious investors who should be smarter and suburban mooks who couldn’t be dumber, all looking for an easy road to riches. DiCaprio is over-the-top in the best way possible. He's exciting to watch.

The movie celebrates sex, drugs, and rock and roll the way Scorsese likes to do it. The film, which is based on the true story of stock manipulator Jordon Belfort, is wickedly funny and never falters in its ferocious effort to satisfy moviegoers. DiCaprio plays Belfort. It’s his fifth time working with Scorsese, the other movies being “Gangs Of New York,” “The Aviator,” “The Departed” and “Shutter Island.”

The main supporting cast is outstanding, including Jean Dujardin as a friendly Swiss banker, Margot Robbie as a beautiful woman along for the ride of a lifetime, Kyle Chandler as a straight arrow FBI investigator, and Jon Bernthal as a muscle-bound fixer. There’s also Cristin Milioti as Belfort’s first wife, Rob Reiner as his father, and Jonah Hill as his devoted and obedient right-hand man. Also in the film are Ethan Suplee, Joanna Lumley, Christine Ebersole, Fran Lebowitz, and Jon Favreau. Everything about “The Wolf Of Wall Street” is top-notch, but special praise goes to the work of long-time Scorsese editor Thelma Schoonmaker and to Rodrigo Prieto’s cinematography.

The picture is a breathless adventure in wealth and excess, similar in style to Scorsese's own "Goodfellas" in terms of narration, pacing, and energy, but without the manic violence. Instead of mob paranoia and retribution, here you’ve got innocent investors becoming hurt, mired as they are in corporate malfeasance. If greed was good in Oliver Stone's "Wall Street," then greed is even better and much more fun in Scorsese's picture. The movie is three-hours long, but I never felt its length for a second. Corruption has never been this dazzling.

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  • NAD civisca art 2 041714 Falls native Michael Civisca returns to stage April 24 for fundraiser

    Niagara Falls native and American standards crooner Michael Civisca will join some of New York City's top nightclub entertainers for "Life is a Cabaret," a show celebrating the Buffalo Community Music School's 90th anniversary. The event will be held at 7:30 p.m. on April 24 in the Mary Seaton Room at Kleinhans Music Hall, 3 Symphony Circle.

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  • NAD Jennings column art 041714 JENNINGS: One of two Queensrÿche's in town this weekend The summer concert scene is filling in its final pieces, North Tonawanda's Niagara River Rocks series should be announcing details of their series soon, and Artpark has announced they will reveal the rest of what is already the best lineup in Western New York, on April 28. Tickets for their remaining shows going on sale May 3.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • NAD Raising Matt Christian art 3 041714 'Raising Matty Christian' examines struggles of boy without limbs

    A movie profiling the life of a young man born without full limbs or a tongue will be part of a film festival being held by an organization created to highlight the abilities of people with disabilities. 

    The film “Raising Matty Christian,’ will be shown by the Museum of disABILITY History and People Inc. as part of the Spring 2014 Annual disABILITIES Film Festival and Speaker Series. The movie will be shown twice on April 25. The showings will be at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. at Dipson Amherst Theatre, 3500 Main St., Buffalo. A reception will be held at 5 p.m. at the museum at 3826 Main St. in Buffalo

    The purpose of the event is to educate attendees, challenge stereotypes and celebrate the contributions of people with disabilities.

    April 17, 2014 3 Photos

  • NAD Calleri review art 041714 CALLERI: From Britain with a warning, and a lot of style and talent Two new movies visit frightening aspects of the human condition. Both are from Great Britain, which may tell us something about the nature of creativity there.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • 3 Doors Down 3 Doors Down latest Artpark concert announcement

    Another addition to the Wednesday concert series at Artpark was announced Monday.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Biz column art 041414 Intimate Goo Goo Dolls show a real treat for fans There is at least one person who will not be reading this review -- Johnny Rzeznik -- who told an intimate crowd at Seneca Niagara's Bear's Den on Saturday that he is "too neurotic" to read reviews.

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • NAD Jon Anderson art 041014 Jon Anderson progresses into solo artist Progressive rock pioneers Yes have undergone a staggering amount of lineup changes over the years, but none had the impact of the two times that vocalist Jon Anderson parted ways with the group, once replaced by Trevor Horn in 1980 and later in 2008 with a sound-alike while Anderson dealt with health issues.

    April 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • NAD Jennings column art 041014 JENNINGS: Goo Goo Dolls highlight weekend music scene This weekend the Bear's Den offers the best pair of shows in the region, including a rare intimate, acoustic performance from The Goo Goo Dolls.

    April 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • NAD Cover art 041014 Shaw Fest players get their acts together Summer theaters have spring training, too, and the Shaw Festival threw out its first pitch last Friday afternoon.

    April 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • NAD Calleri review art 041014 CALLERI: Jakarta, Paris, Manhattan, and LA visited when movies are spread across the globe How much time for movie-going do you have? Four new films arrive, and some of you might consider a marathon of sorts, although it's certainly obvious that these movies have their own specific appeal.

    April 8, 2014 1 Photo

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