It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


Review....The Big Short

page: 1

log in


posted on Jan, 1 2016 @ 04:29 PM
"The Big Short" from a nonfiction best seller by Michael Lewis went over my head from the intricacies of wall street and national economy but
this film is totally engrossing from the characters and performances of some of the best film talent in movies today.
All the performances were totally believable, the script and dialog moved along a little fast for my taste but it still worked in the context of that high pressure world. The social commentary was correct imo and made me feel impotent and pissed off at the way the elite manipulate everyone and don't care; Just what we all suspect anyway. This film doesn't really need the big screen but don't miss it if you have an interest in how money operates in America.

posted on Jan, 1 2016 @ 04:48 PM
I was actually going to make a review for this film last week, I'm glad someone else did

I also thought it was a great film, moved along pretty fast and had a killer lineup of actors. The only thing is that I was a bit confused during parts of it (when it came to the stocks/securities and all that financial lingo), and I still don't quite understand exactly how they betted against the mortgage industry. I guess I need to do some research.

It was filmed in a way similar to the old TV show The Office, which made it pretty interesting.

Good movie overall, I'd recommend it
edit on 1-1-2016 by charolais because: typos

posted on Jan, 1 2016 @ 05:18 PM
IMDb rating: 8.2/10 & 'Rotten Tomatoes' rating: 87%.

A book preview can be seen at Google books, it rates 4 1/2 stars on Amazon.

Below are two trailers and one roundtable video by 'The Hollywood Reporter'...

edit on 1-1-2016 by Murgatroid because: felt like it...

posted on Jan, 1 2016 @ 11:37 PM
I just finished watching this...

It was a struggle to watch because during the entire time I felt as if I was somehow being lied to.

I completely agree with what this person said:

I had an inkling that the movie 'Big Short' might be propaganda.

After a bit of reading, my suspicions were confirmed.

It appears that most have not caught on to the deception though...

I hate to give any attention to Michael Lewis’ The Big Short, since the wildly popular book told a fundamentally misleading story of the crisis which sadly has become conventional wisdom. And it wasn’t just harmlessly inaccurate; it directed public and even lawmaker attention away from the real drivers of this debacle.

Lewis’ tale is neat, plausible to a mass market audience fed a steady diet of subprime markets stupidity and greed, and incomplete in critical ways that render his account fundamentally misleading. It’s almost too bad the book’s so readable, because a lot of people will mistake readability for accuracy, and it’s a pity that Lewis, being a brand name author, has been given a free pass by big-name media like 60 Minutes (old people) and The Daily Show (young people) to sell to an audience of tens of millions a version of the financial crisis that just won’t stand up – not if we’re really trying to get to the heart of the matter, rather than simply wishing to be entertained by breezy well-told stories that provide a bit of easy-to-digest instruction without challenging conventional wisdom.

Lewis’ need to anchor his tale in personalities results in a skewed misreading of the subprime crisis and why and how it got as bad as it did. The group of short sellers he celebrates were minor-leaguers compared to the likes of Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank and John Paulson. Lewis’ desire to satisfy his fan base’s craving for good guys led him to miss the most important story of our age: how a small number of operators used a nexus of astonishing leverage and camouflaged risk to bring the world financial system to its knees and miraculously walked away with their winnings. These players are not the ugly ducklings of Lewis’ fairy tale; they are merely ugly. Whether for his own profit or by accident, Lewis has denied the public the truth.

Debunking “The Big Short”: How Michael Lewis Turned the Real Villains of the Crisis into Heros

Read “Griftopia” by Matt Taibii, pay particular attention to chapter 3 specifically pages 115 - 119. Lloyd Blankfein was overly aggressive and combative in his collateral calls to AIG. This left the Fed and the Treasury with no alternative...

I had an inkling that the movie 'Big Short' might be propaganda. Just the fact that they were using top name actors and making them out to be rebel hero's in one of the biggest swindles of all time , gave me pause to think.

The movie the “Big Short” is propaganda, it wasn’t the 99% the brought about the collapse of the mortgage industry, but Llyod Blankfein of Goldman Sachs and him alone

Yves Smith wonderfully explains why this book is a complete crock. The major problem with books by Michael Lewis [and yes, they are mighty dangerous], is that the reader may walk with with the fantasy that they really learned something. What Lewis skillfully avoids is ever demonstrating how so much was by design; wilful financial fraud and manipulation, instead Lewis reads as if stuff happens by accident. It was rigged throughout and from the get-go; John Paulson was a professional thief, as was Magnetar Capital and Goldman Sachs and so many others. Read Dean Baker, read Erin Arvedlund and Matt Taibbi and Nomi Prins, but avoid Lewis if the truth is what you are after. [After reading a Lewis book, you won't know it was by design; you still won't know who owns anything!

The search terms I used:

"The Big Short" movie propaganda - Google Search

“Big Short” propaganda Llyod Blankfein Goldman Sachs “Griftopia” Matt Taibii - Google Search

edit on 2-1-2016 by Murgatroid because: felt like it...

posted on Jan, 2 2016 @ 12:06 AM
Some of the reviews of the book confirm this as well:

Finish this "sexy" book, written on the level of gossip, and you will know LESS causes of the crash than you did when you began. When you finish "The Big Short," you will have been thoroughly entertained by risque dialogue, fiction-ish anecdotes, suspense, and delightful little scandalous facts about individuals. But you will know LESS than when you began about the origins of the first financial crash in 100 years (since 1907), how it could have been prevented, and why we are being set up for another one. To get THAT information, I recommend "The Financial Crisis and The Free-Market Cure" by John Allison. Unlike Michael Lewis, who is just a popular journalist who specializes in turning financial issues into gossipy good-reads, Allison was a player at the very heart of what was occurring. Customer Reviews: The Big Short

Though Lewis's book recounts the ancillary players in this drama -- like Michael Burry and Greg Lippmann -- Paulson is essentially missing. It was if Lewis were telling the story of the 2009 World Series winning Yankees and not including anything about A Rod or Derek Jeter. One of the points of these books is how conventional wisdom "missed it, how the media never saw the big story. By ignoring Zuckerman's much better book (The Greatest Trade Ever), and focusing on Lewis's, the media had done it again: choosing the sizzle of Lewis to the steak of Zuckerman. And the media wonders why we are all cynical. Lewis' book may be fun and end with a movie starring Brad Pitt but it is Zuckerman's books that gets at the heart of the matter, best explains the housing bubble and what really happened, and most importantly is the better read. If you were going to read one book on this subject, make it Zuckerman's. Customer Reviews: The Big Short

This is a pretty awful book. Michael Lewis, after researching by reading a college kid's paper and then apparently not doing any more research not surprisingly has no idea what he is talking about. He repeatedly (and bizarrely) flubs key, central concepts like CDO's and CDS, just explaining them completely wrongly. It's not surprising that people who aren't familiar with these markets seem to find his explanations hard to understand -- it's because they are wrong and they make no sense! And it's getting really silly after 25 years that he still trying to pass himself off as some kind of finance expert because he was low level grunt for a very short period in the mid-1980s at Salomon (which, by the way, wasn't nearly as important a firm then as he repeatedly claims it was in this book).

On top of his technical incompetence in explaining what actually happened, the portraits of the people he chooses to focus on are as best as I can tell mostly fiction. I know a number of the people he discusses, and in every case his characterizations of them are simply cartoonish and have almost no relationship to reality. In general, the prose here is just painful at times, with his repeated attempts to draw big lessons from some minor thing somebody mentioned to him (or maybe didn't given how much of the personal stuff seems to be fiction). There's actually a whole chapter where he's trying to explain Eisman as some kind of Spiderman-like presence on Wall Street because he apparently mentioned to Lewis that he liked Spiderman comics as a kid or something that is just miserable, awful, painful writing. Customer Reviews: The Big Short

edit on 2-1-2016 by Murgatroid because: felt like it...

posted on Jan, 2 2016 @ 12:47 AM
Another Google Search turns up several more confirmations:

This article about Goldman Sachs (Great American Bubble Machine) by Matt Taibbi rocks:

From tech stocks to high gas prices, Goldman Sachs has engineered every major market manipulation since the Great Depression -- and they're about to do it again. They achieve this using the same playbook over and over again. The formula is relatively simple: Goldman positions itself in the middle of a speculative bubble, selling investments they know are crap. Then they hoover up vast sums from the middle and lower floors of society with the aid of a crippled and corrupt state that allows it to rewrite the rules in exchange for the relative pennies the bank throws at political patronage.

Finally, when it all goes bust, leaving millions of ordinary citizens broke and starving, they begin the entire process over again, riding in to rescue us all by lending us back our own money at interest, selling themselves as men above greed, just a bunch of really smart guys keeping the wheels greased. They've been pulling this same stunt over and over since the 1920s — and now they're preparing to do it again, creating what may be the biggest and most audacious bubble yet.

Something quite HUGE is happening on Goldman’s radar! There is no question that Goldman Sachs engineered the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September of 2008.

Every Major Stock Market Crash Begins with a Trigger Event AKA a Controlled Demolition

Let me start this piece out by stating that the current economic depression that we are currently in was meticulously orchestrated and skillfully engineered. If you haven't come to this conclusion on your own yet, perhaps you are not paying close enough attention to the cold hard facts that have come forth from this economic nightmare. The proof is in how the Fed handled, or mishandled, the matter. The notion that our best and brightest economic minds did not see this coming is pure bull#. The fact that no one has been indicted or jailed for allowing this is disturbing on every level.

Plenty of folks are pointing the accusing finger at unscrupulous Wall Street practices, and rightfully so. Wall Street and its soulless parasitic minions of greed are a huge part of the collapse. The truth is, this meltdown was a mammoth raging tsunami nearly a mile high that couldn't be missed. This in itself is a telling indicator that the fix was in. There were so many destructive mechanisms in place, that it is impossible for the financial brain trust of Wall Street and the Federal Reserve to deny foreknowledge of this catastrophe, suggesting that those on the inside were well aware of the danger that was lurking.

Many causes for the economic collapse have been suggested, but the U.S. Senate issued Levin–Coburn Report found that the crisis was not a natural disaster. This was a contrivance of man that was no accident. Like an arsonist madly dousing our economic system with gas, the risky, destructive financial time bombs were purposefully laid with full knowledge of the inferno to come.

The Current Depression Was Carefully Engineered

Goldman Sachs is today the Illuminati’s locomotive engine. It drove up the price of oil to $147 per barrel; it was Goldman Sachs that gobbled up the failed U.S.S.R.’s valuable assets; that broke the back of California’s bonds; that crushed the entire planet’s economies in 2006 and 2007 with it derivative credit debacle; that funded the presidential campaigns of both McCain and Obama. Goldman Sachs sits atop the globe’s financial heap.

"I'm Doing God's Work"

posted on Jan, 2 2016 @ 08:19 AM
a reply to: charolais

The only thing is that I was a bit confused during parts of it (when it came to the stocks/securities and all that financial lingo), and I still don't quite understand exactly how they betted against the mortgage industry. I guess I need to do some research.

I learned much of what I understand about it from Matt Taibbi at Rolling Stone Magazine. It's complicated... layer upon layer of dirty filthy greed and corruption... and it took alot of reading to understand what I do understand -- and I'm sure what I'm able to understand is just the tip of the iceberg. But for a very simplistic explanation:

After the Great Depression of the 30s, Congress passed the Glass-Steagall Act which separated personal banking from commercial banking. In the 90s, Congress replaced the Glass-Steagall Act with Gramm-Leach-Blilely Act, which once again merged personal and commercial banking, and changed the mortgage process. In the past, you got a 30-year mortgage and the bank you got that mortgage through held the mortgage until it was paid off. They owned the mortgage and were taking the risk that you may not pay it back. Not anymore. Now mortgages are issued by banks, and then divided up into a jillion "shares" and sold to investors... sometimes each share was sold to several investors at the same time. However, the banks continued to service the loan for the investors, meaning they collect payments and send out statements, etc. But banks no longer have any risk; they make their money from servicing the loan -- not from the interest paid on the loan. Even worse, though, they make even more money when they foreclose on the loan and can charge bogus fees for things like "drive-by appraisals" and what not...

About the same time (the 90s), lending requirements were made easier, ostensibly to allow more people to qualify for loans and therefore become homeowners, including those with poor credit. Even worse, these loans were not restricted to those buying a "home" for their principal residence, but to pretty much any Joe Blow that could sign his name -- the so-called NINJA loans with no verification of income or employment required, opening the door to investors. At one point, up to 2/3 of home loans were being obtained by "investors."

Somewhere along the way, and I'm just assuming this wasn't part of the plan from the start, banksters realized they could "short" these mortgages. So they would get sell these risky mortgages as "AAA" mortgages -- meaning little to no risk to investors -- knowing just how risky they were, and bet against the mortgages... in other words, they would bet that these mortgages would be defaulted on by the borrowers. And when they did default, the banksters made big bucks on those "short" bets. But it didn't even stop there. They were also the ones foreclosing on those properties, adding every charge and fee they possibly could think of, and making a fortune on the foreclosures.

What never really became public is the gross level of fraud they committed to put mortgages into artificial defaults, literally stealing homes. For example, banksters started depositing mortgage payments into "suspense" accounts, taking the money but not applying the payment to the account, creating an artificial default. Many states have "non-judicial foreclosures," meaning the bankster never has to prove a thing to foreclose. If the homeowner wants to fight it, the homeowner must bring a lawsuit, which completely flips the burden of proof. The bankster, as the defendant, now has all the protections of the law... although it's the homeowner who is basically the "accused." So the banksters are now entitled to any and all evidence you have, but they don't have to provide a damn thing... not even your payment record (without a court order). For many (perhaps most) homeowners, they just couldn't afford to bring a lawsuit.

AND NOTHING HAS CHANGED. All of the above is still in effect today. In the 2011 fraudclosure settlement of state AGs and the banksters, the banksters were only required to cease and desist these practices for 3 years... we are seeing a new housing bubble growing now... Fraudclosure Part Deux is coming and the inevitable economic collapse won't be far behind.

I hope that helps

ETA: One more thing: Because the feds were guaranteeing most of these loans, when the loans were foreclosed, we the taxpayers were paying for all these bankster fees, including buying the mortgages... so WE owned these homes. But instead of finding a way to put them back on the market, Obama et al sold these homes to banksters and investors for a pittance, and many of these homes are sitting and rotting in order to keep housing prices artificially high.
edit on 2-1-2016 by Boadicea because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 2 2016 @ 08:24 AM
a reply to: Murgatroid

I'm so glad you dug up and posted all this information -- thank you!

I haven't seen the movie, but your links confirm what a friend (a bankruptcy attorney) told me: it was a huge whitewash, basically intending to leave people with the impression that yeah, they're scum, but they didn't do anything illegal.

posted on Jan, 2 2016 @ 11:10 AM
a reply to: Murgatroid

Thanks for your commentary on the reason for the film.

posted on Jan, 2 2016 @ 05:49 PM

originally posted by: olaru12
a reply to: Murgatroid

Thanks for your commentary on the reason for the film.

WOW ! I'm completely lost. You watched a movie which you enjoyed. I watch said movie twice today. I thought it was great.
Most of the reviews posted are not of the movie but the book. Movies are given artistic leeway and frequently do not reflect the actual intent of the book. Propaganda, whether the book / movie reflects the actual plays is moot.
The end result was real. They won and we are left holding the debt. So what am I missing ?

posted on Jan, 11 2016 @ 12:35 AM
a reply to: olaru12

This movie needs to have its own thread in global meltdown.

I have stared and flagged this thread but will continue this discussion on the technical details outlined here:

posted on Jan, 11 2016 @ 04:27 PM
I read the book when it came out. It was a good read. I also was working at Charles Schwab and investment firm that was vastly restructing because of the repeal the Glass Steagall Act. (Which basically separated banking entities from investment firms.

Charles Schwab wasn't involved in the criminal actives going on with the wrapping up of these money swaps.

I can say that the book (and the movie) did a very good job of depicting what happened.

And I can tell you from personal experience that a lot of people (not all) but a lot of people involved in the great bubble had NO CLUE.

I had friends who were brokers, and real estate agents I would talk with telling them what I saw was wrong in the financial institution at that time. And almost none of them believed me.

I still remember the morning I saw Jim Cramer on TV blasting the situation at a lot of the big firms, some of which ceased to exist. It was indeed very real, and a lot (I doubt all) but a lot of those involved were indeed clueless:

new topics

top topics


log in