Wall Street is the best of the genre for pure entertainment's sake, Margin Call is much deeper and wholeheartedly gripping.
The film leaves the viewer asking questions every step of the way and serves as an analogy for how greedy the 1 percenter executives are and how helpless the 99 percent investing public.
Kevin Spacey shines as his usual unlikeable, slightly creepy, yet somehow sympathetic self as the boss of his floor of mortgage-backed traders at an investment firm patterned after the likes of Lehman Brothers. Demi Moore, Paul Bettany, Simon Baker, and Jeremy Irons as fellow executives doing their parts to cover-up a scheme that will leave potentially millions destitute are also wonderful. And Zachary Quinto (pictured) is a young star-in-the-making as the brainiac numbers-cruncher who helps his boss, played typically well by Stanley Tucci, figure out the internal crisis that is already underway at the firm. Incidentally, Quinto also has a role in one of my favorite new TV shows, American Horror Story.
This is certainly a sleeper as one of my finalists for movie of the year.
****1/2 out of ***** stars