Full disclosure: I was already sold on Best Picture Oscar nominee The Big Short when it first came out because (a) it's directed by Adam McKay (Talladega Nights is a go-to cheer-up movie) and (b) I'm in the process of buying my first home.
But no one else I know had any interest in seeing the true-story housing-crisis dark comedy, saying, "I don't think I'd understand it."
Fear not, film fans. The Big Short is not some esoteric economics thesis. It's a razor-sharp-witted ride following a few folks who saw the 2000s real estate crash coming and made mad money as a result. It's also a movie everyone should see—and enjoy. Here's why:
1. It's Clever About Our Cluelessness: Any technical banking term or situation is explained, brilliantly, by breaking the fourth wall, often with special guest stars (Hi, Selena Gomez!). I don't want to spoil anything else, but trust me, if I could understand it, anyone can. I mean, I write about the Kardashians all day.
2. Funny Business: Like I mentioned before, the movie is co-written and directed by Oscar nominee Adam McKay, Will Ferrell's creative partner in crime, who recently scored a DGA Award nomination too. The Big Short isn't goofballs like Anchorman, but it still has hella hilarious moments. Like star Ryan Gosling told The Wrap, "I think [McKay] has a great quality of being able to be outraged by something without losing his sense of humor about it."
3. The More You Know: The Big Short is a big lesson on personal responsibility and why no one should live on credit trying to keep up with the Joneses. The housing bubble burst led to our recent Great Recession, and another crisis like this could be headed our way. Why not educate yourself on how we can best avoid this, and laugh out loud at the same time?
4. Wolf-Whistle of Wall Street: If the reasons above weren't enough, have you seen this film's cast? It's a prime, AAA-rated bundle of Hollywood hunks: Ryan Gosling, Brad Pitt, Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Finn Wittrock (American Horror Story), John Magaro (Orange Is the New Black), Hamish Linklater (The Newsroom), Jeremy Strong (The Judge), Rafe Spall (What If), Max Greenfield (New Girl), Billy Magnussen (Into the Woods) and Byron Mann (Arrow). In other words, a solid investment.