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Margin Call

Margin Call

2011
Drama
Suspense/Thriller
1h 47m
A thriller that revolves around the key people at a investment bank over a 24-hour period during the early stages of the 2008 financial crisis.
Your probable score
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Margin Call

2011
Drama
Suspense/Thriller
1h 47m
Your probable score
Avg Percentile 53.61% from 1898 total ratings

Ratings & Reviews

(1898)
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Rated 11 Feb 2011
55
39th
The good cast doesn't fully stretch their abilities here. Their acting is like the film itself: sufficient to keep your attention, yet somewhat dull. The best of the lot, as he tend to be, is Tucci. The point about some of the smartest people in the world essentially wasting their talents on jobs in banking was worth making and there are decent attempts to characterize the greedy people in that world but both the message, the characterizations and particularly the dialogue needed to be sharper.
Rated 21 Dec 2011
75
80th
Probably the finest Wall Street ever made, this piece of financial crisis drama delivers a sober tone and a simple book of dialogues to set the first movements of the wave that devastated the world in 2008. This company ruled by Irons and all his sub-chiefs -- Cohen, Spacey, Bettany -- is forced to sell 93% of its assets -- which simply have no value for the future buyers -- in order to just give the apocalypse a fast start and save their own heads. In a way, it's all rawly real.
Rated 21 Dec 2011
80
78th
An uncommonly smart, complex, and extremely claustrophobic look into the early stages of the financial meltdown. I must admit some of the technicalities flew over my head but I got the general picture. What makes this film so good is that it could easily have pandered by making things more digestible. But it didn't.
Rated 24 Oct 2011
84
73rd
Finely made drama, which is distinguished by two extraordinary performances; Spacey as a tired middle-management type and Irons as oily CEO. Film perfectly captures the atmosphere of the Wall Street collapse, and the rest of the well chosen cast bring their characters to vivid life; manages to make potentially dry subject matter fascinating and electric as it examines the personalities involved.
Rated 12 Aug 2011
40
12th
it describes the beginning of a financial crisis that will leave its mark on the whole world for years to come. and at the same time it's the most boring movie i've seen in some time. it's just so dry and delivers no consecutive explanations, only shows how the people involved try to get out of the mess unharmed, knowingly ruining economy. there's almost no struggle, just a bunch of scenes where they talk without any revelations, except that they really like to...talk.
Rated 09 Dec 2011
88
68th
As I read all your reviews, I would say that this movie absolutely hit it's mark... This was one that I caught while out of town, visiting my uncle in SF, and we chose it on the spur-of-the-moment, knowing nothing about it, aside from an internet ad... I was VERY pleasantly surprised! GREAT work from the entire cast, directed with finesse by first-timer(?), J.C. Chandor... My favorite ensemble of the year. (And, the Greek constraint of containing the story in 24 hours, wasn't lost on me...)
Rated 26 Oct 2011
72
68th
If you've seen and enjoyed the documentary Inside Job, you're going to like Margin Call, which captures the atmosphere really well in this dramatization of the financial crisis. Featuring two distinguished performances by Kevin Spacey and Jeremy Irons, Margin Call shines in giving the intelligent people wasting their talents in the banking industry and catalyzing the crisis a face and some depth. Some are more emphatic than others, but they're all trying to cover their greedy asses.
Rated 23 Jan 2012
2
19th
Remember that really eventful and well written scene? Neither do I.
Rated 30 Jan 2012
82
78th
Maybe it's just Kevin Spacey, but I felt like this was trying to be some kind of Glengarry Glen Ross/Wall Street hybrid. There's a lot of speechifying going on here. But it's not Mamet. Some of the dialogue is clunky as hell, but the subject matter is what carries the film. The information presented in this film is relevant and important. I would seriously recommend seeing this at least once.
Rated 22 Oct 2011
20
9th
Awful acting and a gratingly stupid screenplay. Spacey is the only decent aspect of this turkey.
Rated 26 Mar 2024
65
48th
Honestly, it's your call. If you think something like this will be entertaining I can't imagine it failing you but please note that my recommendations have a pretty large margin of error.
Rated 20 Jan 2012
85
78th
Weird, I almost empathized with a Kevin Spacey character for the very first time. Irons was unbelievably good in this, although in general it was hard to shed too many tears for any of the characters here, with the exception of the compelling Tucci. Also, Demi Moore does a fine job as well.
Rated 26 Feb 2012
60
79th
Margin Call is both a disaster film more terrifying than 2012 and a human drama on par with Up in the Air where a Lehman-esque firm sits already on the brink of ruin, with a constant ebb of fresh layoff leaving the building and a sudden discovery of a cataclysmic inevitability that will test your faith in humanity. Probably the best film that we'll see on the 2008 market collapse, thanks in no small part to the human focus and leaving all of the political finger pointing to documentarians.
Rated 25 Dec 2013
60
54th
I liked this film for two reasons. First, it proves that women in film are obsolete ( another example being, Lawrence of A). Second, without having to relate to such unnecessary things as characters it can focus on plot, and plot only!
Rated 12 Feb 2012
90
90th
Its amazing what can happen when great actors are working off of a great script. Not to mention a director who adds style to the film without being overbearing.
Rated 19 Nov 2012
73
39th
The depiction of a corporation as an avaricious entity, relentlessly pursuing its own interests at the expense of others, is excellently detailed by the human cogs in a faceless machine. Irons in particular delivers a performance that perfectly characterizes the business elite's sociopathy. Devoid of any establishment on the wider historical context the fire sale is rendered in microscopic examination, which for astute viewers creates a beautiful tension in the knowledge of the ultimate outcome.
Rated 30 Mar 2022
87
35th
Great actors and stunning visuals. And enough suspense to keep you watching to the end. However, in my opinion, this movie is saddled with two big flaws - over-reliance on dramatic pauses, and too many characters muttering "fuck me!" to hint at the enormity of whatever financial disaster is being depicted on the off-screen monitors - neither helping us understand what is going on. The writers could have done a lot better with those instrumental parts of the script.
Rated 27 Dec 2011
80
37th
Boring stock market things turned into a successful thriller with some cool performances from Kevin Spacey and Jeremy Irons. I like how it doesn't dumb down its jargon for audience members who don't know shit about the stock market (me).
Rated 15 Sep 2019
63
58th
it feels more of an episode of a low brow tv show, but somehow the cast includes irons, spacey, tucci and bettany. it leans heavily into the performance of the actors and their charisma, and it's fine to a level, though it doesn't change the fact that in the end, it's kind of a mediocre movie with some glimpses of good dialogue. "fuck normal people" was the highlight for me. it's hard to imagine a movie where the whole cast is the villain, but there you go.
Rated 21 Jan 2012
30
9th
A documentary like Inside Job does a much better job at (1) educating you about the causes of the 2008 financial collapse, and (2) keeping you emotionally invested in the story. This dramatization fails at both of these points by only focusing on the major players of a single financial firm, whom are all reprehensible because their decisions in the film are all driven by money. The film is dangerous because by not providing the full context, some will think Irons' character is an ideal CEO.
Rated 16 Dec 2011
76
78th
It accomplished what it was trying to do. Of course it would have been better if there was a deeper, emotional message to it all...but it was simply trying to provide a look into how it would all go down. It did that, and it was fair and showed it from multiple angles. Not sure why it was flown so much under the radar.
Rated 13 Jun 2015
84
55th
This is a modern day Glengarry Glen Ross: a bunch of white business guys getting pushed around when their workplace goes to hell, a storyline that barely jumps any amount of time ahead (oh and it happens overnight to boot), and as if that wasn't enough Spacey is in this too! Solidly acted, even better writing -- this somehow takes an inaccessible concept and makes it engaging enough to sit with for nearly two hours.
Rated 29 Jan 2012
76
55th
if you manage to get your eyes off of Zachary Quinto's out of this world, ridiculous eyebrows its a pretty solid movie with great acting from Kevin Spacey and specially Jeremy İrons...however lacks the full dramatic structure the topic deserves
Rated 10 Sep 2021
71
61st
A deliberately unspectacular and realistic portrayal of the events where a number of key individuals at an investment bank realise they are going to need to act morally reprehensibly if the company is to survive. Margin Call is probably easier to watch if you know the stock market or have seen The Big Short which explained a lot of the foundations this is built on. The performances are suitably understated, solid and contribute to a worthy insight into the ruthless nature of Wall Street finance
Rated 12 Feb 2012
88
52nd
Intensely soft spoken and realistic tale of personal struggles between the forces of greed, survival, loyalty and betrayal. Each of the protagonists are given equal time in a script that doesn't follow the Hollywood play book of good guys, bad guys and redemptive vengeance. Only money wins.
Rated 21 Jan 2012
60
29th
The movie could have been significantly better than what it turned out to be. The part of the movie which could have been nail biting was just portrayed as insignificant. The movie over all turns out to be a below par considering the actors it has.
Rated 20 Feb 2012
79
59th
Intriguing in its broad ideas but lackluster in its minutia. I understood the general ideas and moral quandaries the film posed, but what about the details? What EXACTLY was going on? What does this company even DO? I understand that in the grand scheme all of that doesn't really matter, but it leaves the film feeling too opaque. Nevertheless, I was entertained. Spacey and Irons give Oscar-worthy performances and the whole thing is quite well made. I just needed the movie to meet me halfway.
Rated 08 Oct 2014
50
49th
Stupid name as it has nothing to do with a margin call. Great cast and the acting is good, but it is full of confusing wall street trading details, although the general point gets across. There is not much special, in fact it is mundane, bordering on boring most of the time. The side stories and side story ending made no sense. Mostly people losing their jobs, and a few making big money selling bad investments. I enjoyed the performances but the subject matter is pretty dry. Not enough action.
Rated 23 Apr 2015
68
70th
A lovely debut from J.C. Chandor who would become one of the decade's finest new filmmakers. I was half-expecting Margin Call to focus on procedures, an unraveling mystery, suspense and perhaps good guys and bad guys. Chandor isn't interested in any of that. He gives a deserved gawk to the absurdity of a business that sells nothing but speculation, and he creates an effective psychological thriller based purely on the human drama surrounding a workplace crisis.
Rated 06 Jan 2024
65
45th
Many such Big True Story films would benefit from the approach taken here, narrower in narrative scope with greater intimacy of setting. There's an intriguing sense of something like Mills' power elite at play, words with the weight of nation states from the slightly hurried lips of the untethered rich. The framing is so claustrophobic I had to check to make sure Netflix didn't have it in the wrong aspect ratio. Chandor probably has a great film in him, but none of us are getting any younger...
Rated 31 Aug 2016
74
68th
Effective and pleasing to watch, with great performances from the ensemble cast - Tucci, Irons and Spacey were particularly solid. The forthcoming financial horror is only hinted at, and we're only seeing a small, nameless chunk of it here, but the amoral stance taken by the company can be assumed to be replicated all over. Bastards, the lot of 'em. It doesn't go for over-dramatization or noise; the quiet, efficient grimness of it all works well. Also "Jeremy Irons Miracle Visa Team" - nice.
Rated 07 Dec 2011
60
17th
Not bad, but very forgettable.
Rated 16 Nov 2013
40
5th
I can't believe this film got even mediocre reviews. There is certainly an important story to be told about the financial crisis, but this self-important, meandering mess does a horrible job of it.
Rated 17 Feb 2012
73
81st
An excellent thriller-drama that manages to really get you sucked into the crime scene of Wall Street without overloading you in incomprehensible details, but still giving you enough to understand what's going on. A brilliant cast does the rest and makes this as good as a thriller can be.
Rated 10 Dec 2011
40
30th
the story with the bridge was inspiring, the rest was average
Rated 04 Feb 2024
80
77th
Having worked in this industry, this movie gets a lot of moments very close to real life. Especially the calls between traders at the very end.
Rated 08 Mar 2015
80
89th
Margin Call, a film about the final few hours before a pending financial crisis, is an intelligent, gripping film. It's filled with wonderful performances from its ensemble cast, feels incredibly realistic, and makes you think. This is a great film.
Rated 29 Nov 2013
71
55th
Slick, raw and real. Considering the focus of the movie is not action packed this 107 mins flew fast.
Rated 09 Jan 2012
70
60th
Well done film but for some odd reason Demi Moore is in it. What's the matter guys? Couldn't afford Rachel McAdams?
Rated 18 Feb 2018
80
89th
Seen this some time ago. I loved it for the cool atmosphere and the sustained feeling. Especially Kevin Spacey ties the film together.
Rated 04 Feb 2012
7
57th
"Margin Call" brims with a competent script that offers a singular look into the players and machinations behind last decade's most upsetting financial event. I wasn't however fully enraptured by the calm before the storm tone that underlies the film; The whole thing could've used some tighter direction, some parts move at a snail's pace only to reach some speed soon after. The performances on the other hand are uniformly excellent with Spacey in a (surprisingly) standout role. Worth a watch.
Rated 04 Dec 2011
60
41st
i found it fairly engaging. bettany and spacey were good, irons was pretty over the top but he's always enjoyable. That zachary quinto, though, I just can't take that face seriously. It works when he plays Spock, but I think that's pretty much it.
Rated 03 Jan 2013
65
48th
ikinci izleyiş. oyuncu performansları ve senaryo ön planda ve olması gereken de bu. iyi yazılmış, iyi oynanmış, problemsiz yönetilmiş bir iş gibi daha çok. filmin krize yönelik tavrı diğer birçok finansal dramayla denk düşse dahi onların aksine karakterlere odaklanıp tutarlı bir anlatı sunuyor, bu her ne kadar siyaseten tartışmalı olsa da.
Rated 03 Jun 2013
80
77th
Helps explain a lot about the crash. Everyone involved does great. Makes me think, makes me wonder.
Rated 29 May 2018
81
57th
80.00+.50 = 80.50.
Rated 05 Aug 2012
67
57th
Although it is obviously a competent cast, it suffers from a more compelling focal point for the delivery of the doomsday. Worth a watch for historical reference and the performances though.
Rated 14 May 2012
90
93rd
Excellent generic Wall Street drama. No real connection to the mortgage crisis. In fact they don't really go into any of the nuts and bolts, just that the firm overextended itself, thus the title. Perhaps the best job of ensemble casting ever.
Rated 23 Dec 2012
70
90th
I need the money.
Rated 22 Apr 2017
80
20th
Awesome dialog! Great Movie!
Rated 03 Nov 2011
73
70th
A nice actor story. I liked the tense and pretty good pacing. The theme of the plot was also fine since you can place it anywhere. The American financial crisis is not the only around the world. Just recent.
Rated 18 Aug 2014
24
14th
Drab, star-studded attempt at Wall-Street tension based on the 2008 Global Financial Crisis. It would have been far more interesting to examine the events the film refers to as happening around 40 months earlier, and then attach some of this as an 'Afterword' or 'Epilogue'. Office politics has considerable dramatic potential, but this effort doesn't help make that clear.
Rated 25 Jan 2012
64
37th
Decent story and acting, but the director isn't quite up to the task.
Rated 29 Mar 2012
47
6th
Can't anyone atleast try to make this film watchable?
Rated 22 Oct 2011
74
22nd
New drinking game: whenever someone says "tell it to me in plain english" or "leave the jargon out, what does it mean" in a childish method to explain the financial crisis to the audience, take a shot.
Rated 28 Nov 2011
83
47th
Money or moral? Intelligent film. Quite heavy on economic terms, but I liked the actor play. No real preaching, but still made me wanna stay down-to-earth for the years to come.
Rated 22 Aug 2012
77
47th
A star-studded cast is in this film about Wall Street and the financial collapse but it wasn't enough to really make a good movie because of one flaw, too much Wall Street jargon that wasn't explained well to the audience. I thought that Spacey, Quinto, Baker and Tucci were all just great in this. It has an interesting and historical context but it just didn't blow me away. Don't get me wrong, it kept my attention but by the end of the movie I really didn't care much about the whole situation.
Rated 03 Dec 2012
75
63rd
Energetic and thoroughly entertaining, Chandor's talky "thriller" is fascinating and sleek.
Rated 29 Dec 2015
80
68th
This is a film which manages at once to offer an entertaining and tense viewing experience while simultaneously giving a sense of real insight; both a stony and (presumably) accurate depiction of the real world of high finance and also brimming with style and intrigue.
Rated 21 Apr 2012
87
74th
I wish they hadn't needed to have so many characters ask to be explained the mortgage crisis as if they were stupid, because it made me feel like the filmmakers assumed that's how the audience felt.
Rated 23 Dec 2014
80
68th
The pacing in the middle section is a little too slack, and there's too much "explain it to me as if I were a child" but it is for the most part tightly written, chillingly beautiful to look at, and morally complex. It's very impressive for a first feature.
Rated 11 Feb 2012
54
28th
They are sooo afraid of making 1 Million $ in a single day. Yeah, you heard me.
Rated 02 Nov 2012
80
74th
A fascinating and effective thriller which was released at just the right time to capitalise (haha, capitalise, geddit?) on the public consciousness and curiosity about the widely misunderstood economic crisis of 2008. The film also digs into the human side of its protagonists, and the acting, pacing and editing are also spot-on throughout. Comes a close second to The Social Network as best topical business-related drama of recent years.
Rated 12 Jan 2016
65
64th
dog :(
Rated 17 Nov 2011
70
50th
I'm not trying to be mean here, but Demi Moore's face and her awful plastic surgery were a distraction. Cruel of me to criticize her appearance, I know, but she was pretty badly miscast. That aside, I actually liked this movie. Not a whole lot is asked of the actors, and the visual style isn't very strong, but the script is compelling. I was on board.
Rated 22 Oct 2011
50
23rd
Not sure what to think of this. If I knew more about economics or the stock market and how it works, I'd probably have enjoyed this more. But unfortunately a lot of the plot went completely over my head. I had trouble staying awake, probably because of that, but nevertheless I can't give this a very high score. Acting is great though.
Rated 19 Jan 2015
83
79th
Points for being Cronenberg cold (that should be a grey shaded crayon colour) & casting Jeremy Irons to boot.
Rated 26 Sep 2011
30
9th
boring
Rated 31 Oct 2011
65
44th
Uneven but good.
Rated 10 May 2018
75
33rd
just ok, not much story, but little story
Rated 12 Nov 2015
37
28th
Decent script, good actors, yet the whole thing feels somehow... embalmed. A totally different directorial approach would have been in order, methinks.
Rated 27 Oct 2020
55
29th
Rather stupid writing and straight to dvd style directing but I have weak spot for anxiety inducing ticking timer movies
Rated 15 May 2012
76
64th
Far better than I was suspecting. It has a really impressive cast, with Spacey and Jeremy Irons clearly the highlights, and an impressive script as well than manages to do the unthinkable: humanize people that were instrumental in a global economic downfall. I didn't think it would be possible and now that I remember how many homes were lost and how much tax payer money was wasted helping banks recover from horrendous practices the sympathy once again gives way to rage.
Rated 14 Nov 2011
20
15th
The writing is so bad that it undermines the whole film. Spacey does a decent job, but the rest of the characters are basically oversimplified lazily-acted caricatures which are not remotely believable. Apparently the 'heroes' of the dealing room are engineers and the 'villains' are the non-engineers? What a joke, who writes this shit? The climax of the film doesn't even attempt to show the crucial day of trading; all we get is a short, weak voice-over instead. Go re-watch Wall Street instead.
Rated 13 Sep 2013
60
57th
Promising plot, though disappointing ending...
Rated 01 Sep 2013
81
68th
80.500
Rated 12 Apr 2013
74
74th
La faillite de Lehman Brothers liée à la crise des subprimes en 2008
Rated 05 Nov 2019
60
58th
ger; [Der große Crash; margin call]; in einer investment bank finden die mitarbeiter ein verlustbringendes risikoinvestment - und suchen nach möglichkeiten die krise abzuwenden.; (geeignete spannung zum einmaligen ansehen);
Rated 10 Sep 2012
41
13th
A bit stupid.
Rated 06 Apr 2015
60
40th
For a movie that's talk talk talk from start to end, it gets you hooked and intrigued the whole time. Very well acted and decently shot. An interesting watch and a good look at capitalism
Rated 24 Apr 2022
87
79th
This and the Big Short are the best two movies about the financial crisis I've seen, but both are very different. Margin Call is heavy on the tension of the moment it all came crashing down rather than the specifics of how they got there. Pretty lean movie, but they could have cut out the extra scenes with Kevin Spacey's dog. Good performances from all the major actors though including Spacey
Rated 24 Jun 2012
80
73rd
The cinematography, sound design and editing go hand-in-hand to create a steely cold countdown of financial disaster. The feeling of a story progressing over one night is engaging, and the film otherwise succeeds in discussing the ethics surrounding the financial collapse without becoming heavy-handed and awkward.
Rated 02 Jan 2014
40
24th
Paper cutout characters written by people with a child-like understanding of what investment bankers and CEOs must talk like. Falls apart in the second half.
Rated 01 Sep 2013
75
54th
Nice acting, gives some nice little insights.
Rated 30 Jan 2012
58
12th
Downbeat, well-acted but curiously flat depiction of the start of the 2008 meltdown. And the industry gets off way too lightly: according to this telling, the only bad guys in the 3rd Reich were Hitler, Goebbels and Goering. Watch "Inside Job" for the real deal; better still, Marc Isaacs' "Men of the City".
Rated 05 Jun 2012
50
33rd
NO content, NO excitement, could be better .
Rated 06 Apr 2011
25
61st
"Avoids fantasyland boardroom heroism while lucidly assessing the indomitable persistence of unchecked greed." - Nick Schager
Rated 08 Aug 2020
84
75th
Less technical than big short. Less cheesy than Wall Street. Same message. But more realistic and better acting.
Rated 25 Nov 2011
70
82nd
Very good.
Rated 12 Sep 2012
80
84th
This has an insanely good cast. Tucci, Bettany and Spacey all bring their A-game. The focus change work well throughout the film and it is an interesting look throughout the entire hierarchy of a major firm.
Rated 13 Oct 2022
78
85th
Deliberately paced, well shot, featuring good performances and enough character moments to make you appreciate them, while wisely letting the viewers draw their own conclusions. There's really little not to like.
Rated 13 Feb 2012
85
50th
A great, slick Wall Street movie supported by a brilliant cast. Spock shone.
Rated 30 Nov 2012
80
80th
With its restricted one-night timeframe and a setting that rarely expands beyond the walls of the firm, Margin Call can feel like a dramatized version of those ubiquitous 2008 news photos of white men staring in horror at numbers on a screen. But in its best moments, this film reminds us that every one of those pictures contained its own story of compromise, corruption, and ruin.
Rated 08 Nov 2014
90
93rd
Peter : Are you sure it's the only ... or the right thing to do ? Sam : For who ? Peter : I'm not sure. Sam : Neither am I. A riveting film about the subprime crisis!
Rated 20 Jun 2022
79
75th
Even a decade-plus from the Great Recession, it's difficult to summon pathos for these kinds of characters. But Chandor's background in the financial world lends authenticity to this behind-the-headlines thriller, and it's worth watching just for the colorful and devastating monologues about The Way Things Work.
Rated 17 May 2021
75
50th
This movie shows that a film can typically only ever have a star cast or a star script, but rarely both for the two are at odds. I will say that it could have been much, much worse. And that it does succeed in the middling ground that it sets itself in.
Rated 09 Jul 2012
89
89th
A wonderful take on the 2008 financial meltdown. I expected a great movie because of the cast and I was not disappointed. The uniqueness of this unlike many films and series that have covered or are covering this topic is how it is all from the point of view of one firm and everyone in it. This makes for meaningful story-telling. A lot many filmmakers could learn a thing or two about creating that depth in a story and how it bears on the audience.
Rated 09 Oct 2011
76
49th
I feel like the movie was actively trying to say as little as possible. Kind of an accomplishment.
Rated 19 Dec 2012
80
96th
Hands-down the best of the recent 'economic crisis' films, Margin Call utilises a great ensemble giving spot-on performances (particularly the leads, Spacey and Bettany) to humanise the bankers involved, making sage points on both sides of the argument. It aint perfect but a 'talky' as captivating as this - especially when you already know the outcome - must be worth a recommendation. The dog-burying finale really wasn't needed but there you go.
Rated 29 Nov 2015
81
88th
Very well played, underrated
Rated 12 May 2017
74
57th
A little disappointed of the non-ending, but still a good movie.

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