Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps had a screening in France a couple days ago, and the primary Out of Competition screening was this morning. Reception to the film seems to be generally positive, with a few mixed notes. But what about a third movie? As director Oliver Stone has been doing the press rounds in Cannes, he’s talked a lot about last year’s financial meltdown, and hit a few other topics. Among them was the not entirely surprising notion that this film was written with the possibility of a third in mind.

Asked about a sequel, Stone told Reuters,

Why not? We left it open at the end in a way on which we can hang a Wall Street 3. We’ll have Gekko back and maybe Josh Brolin, too.

The catch is that the question was about Stone returning to the franchise once more after another 22 years has passed, just as he’s done now. So…not exactly a huge promise of a sequel there. Sounds like the sort of cheeky response Stone might give to a fairly silly question. But if he’s really open to that and this film makes money, maybe Fox can convince him to shave 20 years off that timeline.

So what about that ending? Critical word and general recaps of the reception to this morning’s screening are beginning to filter in. Anne Thompson said the screening “earned applause as journos ran out of the Lumiere before the movie had finished to get into the press conference,” before saying,

The movie follows so many threads and characters that none of them is fully-fledged, somehow… The movie pops in and out of satirizing and referencing itself and trying to create an authentic drama. And yet it moves along entertainingly, even if the resolution seems Hollywood pat.

Movieline said that “‘sell’ seemed to be the general consensus among critics and journalists as they walked out, and calls the acting and writing “solidly mediocre.”

The occasionally cranky Jeff Wells reports that the film is,

an intelligent, briskly paced, rat-a-tat financial tale that moves along nicely for the first 75% to 80% of its running time — not brilliantly but sufficiently, offering a more-or-less decent ride. And then it blows itself up during the last 25 minutes or so.Or so it seemed to me. Some have told me they disagree, but I know (or think I know) when a film is gutting itself emotionally.

Finally, THR calls the film “One of the better sequels in a long time,” saying that it,

not only advances a story but also has something new to say. The film overheats now and then but blame this on filmmaking passion. One senses a fully engaged filmmaker at the helm, driving the movie at a lightning pace as if in a hurry to get to the next scene or next aphorism that further illuminates this dark world.

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