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Westside Steve

Billionaire Boys Club review

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Billionaire Boys Club
Vertical entertainment
R.                               108 min
If the BILLIONAIRE BOYS CLUB sounds familiar it probably should. That was the nickname of a fiduciary scandal back in the 80s and those types of crimes have been a relatively popular subject for films somewhat recently. THE WOLF OF WALL STREET, THE BOILER ROOM, WALL STREET and many others have been exposes  of the excesses and dirty dealings of high-powered financial wizards. The Great unwashed loves to hate the rich but just can’t keep their eyes away from the outrageous debauchery that goes hand-in-hand with unbridled greed and excessive wealth that we all secretly long for. 
Politics and art seem to go hand in hand too often, this genre of film seems to pop up whenever Hollywood decides a little wealth shaming is in order. That has nothing to do with whether or not this film is good; it’s just that it really carries the feel of ‘well it’s been done before.’
Whether it’s because of redundancy of topic or over the top political correctness this flick opened on a relatively tiny amount of brick-and-mortar screens, but it is available on Amazon Prime and other streaming services should you decide not to take a drive.
Here’s a little bit of a spoiler coming so  make your decision now. 
Despite the common theme of poor boy makes it rich swindles a bunch of people does a lot of blow and gets the girl it does have its own distinct storyline.
Taron Egerton  and Ansel Elgort play high school classmates Dean and Joe, a hustler and a bright but honest financial guy, who hook up again after a few years and put together a scheme to attract investors. These investors are the aimless sons of  wealthy Beverly Hills scions many of which yearn to prove themselves to their fathers. The investment group, dubbed the Billionaire Boys Club, gets underway by means of an accidental Ponzi scheme. With potential millions to be made the boys take the idea to hot shot entrepreneur Ron Levine (Spacey) who has faith in the boys and hooks them up with access to a  250 million dollar swindle. When they quarter-billion dollar boondoggle comes crashing down the kids find out that there good buddy Levine is actually a crook. The BBC’s world of glamour comes tumbling down in a flurry of murder and panic. As it was with the original story it’s never 100% clear exactly who kills who but when one of the friends turns rat we know who takes the fall.
BBC is certainly not an actual clone of any of the other Wall Street flicks, as it eventually morphs into a crime flick and becomes somewhat more interesting. Unfortunately, except for Kevin Spacey, it doesn’t have a very strong cast which is exacerbated by second-rate writing. The rise to the top and the eventual crash all seem to be performed with a noticeable lack of emotion. I’m guessing that could have been helped at least a little by director and co-writer James Cox. I really wanted to like this one more, but…

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