MAIN STREET TOOK THE FALL. WALL STREET GOT THE CHECK.
August 2008; when the Lehman Brothers CEO (James Woods) fails to come up with a deal to save the bank, it is up to the Treasury Secretary (William Hurt) to make the private sector swallow a bitter pill or two. Director Curtis Hanson’s first TV movie since 1986 is an initiated look at how the financial meltdown of 2008 torpedoed one of the largest investment banks in the U.S. and threatened to destroy the whole system. A challenging experience that may require some prior knowledge of the twists and turns of the crisis, but it is a fascinating, well-acted and sadly believable depiction of a brand of capitalism that has yet to truly reform.
2011-U.S. Made for TV. 99 min. Color. Produced by Ezra Swerdlow. Directed by Curtis Hanson. Teleplay: Peter Gould. Book: Andrew Ross Sorkin. Cast: William Hurt (Henry Paulson), Paul Giamatti (Ben Bernanke), Billy Crudup (Timothy Geithner), James Woods, Bill Pullman, Matthew Modine… Tony Shalhoub, Topher Grace, Cynthia Nixon, Edward Asner.
Last word: “We tried to remain neutral, but there is obviously a vantage point, since we’re looking at these people who brought the crisis on. Most all of my movies concern a character who’s trying to become a better version of himself. I thought that’s what Henry Paulson was doing. He was partly to blame for creating the circumstances that brought the crisis on, but he does his best to find a way out of it. Even if that way, government intervention, went against everything he had believed in his business life.” (Hanson, HBO)