Posted on Monday, December 30th, 2013 by Germain Lussier
The biggest debate over Martin Scorsese‘s current hit The Wolf of Wall Street hasn’t been its quality. Its been its ethics. The film shows stockbrokers lead by Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio) abusing the legal and financial systems to ridiculous gain, only to blow it all on lavish possessions and parties. Some have said the film glorifies these actions. Others, and I’m in this camp, think it paints Belfort as a terrible person and ends up being a harsh criticism of America’s economic character.
Another reason for the controversy is the film features a cameo by Belfort himself, a convicted criminal and informant who is presumably profiting from both the movie and increased sales of his book on which Scorsese’s film is based. Since Belfort has failed to make the restitution payments mandated by his 2003 conviction — he’s got almost $100m to go — that’s been a huge sticking point for some.
However, Belfort has taken to social media to explain where his new money is going. While he will profit from the film, all of the money is being turned over to the government as continuted restitution for his years of criminal activity.