7 Best Stock Market Movies of All Time

The stock market is often glamorized and portrayed as a fast-paced and high-stakes world where fortunes can be won or lost in the blink of an eye. It’s no surprise that Hollywood has quickly capitalized on this image by creating movies about it. From tales of greed and corruption to inspiring stories of triumph over adversity some genuinely memorable films have been made about the financial markets throughout history. Here are the seven best stock market movies worth watching at least once!

The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)

The Wolf of Wall Street is an action-packed and entertaining movie that will appeal to everyone, even those who just play on crypto casino sites or are not avid stock market enthusiasts. Directed by Martin Scorsese and featuring Leonardo DiCaprio in a career-defining role as Jordan Belfort the film tells the outrageous and unbelievable true story of a stockbroker who made millions by manipulating penny stocks in the 1990s.

The Wolf of Wall Street is not only entertaining but also serves as an important cautionary tale for investors. The film illustrates how easy it can be to fall into temptation when money, drugs and power are involved while showcasing the real consequences such decisions lead upon oneself with time.

The Big Short (2015)

The Big Short is directed by Adam McKay and based on the book of the same name by Michael Lewis. It is undoubtedly one of the best stock market movies ever made. The film follows a group of financial experts who predict that the housing market will collapse in 2008 leading to an economic recession.

What sets apart The Big Short from other stock market films is how it effectively explains complex concepts like subprime mortgages and credit default swaps without losing its audience’s attention. Characters break down walls throughout conversations with the viewers making it feel like a conversation rather than being lectured on financial jargon. The pacing is also noteworthy because it is fast-paced and engaging despite focusing mainly on finance.

Wall Street (1987)

Oliver Stone directs the iconic stock market movie, Wall Street and features Michael Douglas in his Oscar-winning role as the ruthless financier Gordon Gekko. The film follows a young, ambitious stockbroker, Bud Fox (Charlie Sheen) who becomes entangled in Gekko’s corrupt dealings.

Using memorable quotes like Greed is Good, the movie reflects on morality vs success showcasing how far one might go to climb the ladder of success. The film vividly portrays life on Wall Street in the 1980s where insider trading and corporate raider tactics were rampant.

Despite being made over three decades ago it still holds up well even today with its themes remaining relevant to modern-day society especially as income inequality remains an issue in most countries globally. 

Trading Places (1983)

Trading Places is a classic stock market comedy that stars Eddie Murphy and Dan Aykroyd. The movie revolves around the lives of two men from opposite sides of the economic spectrum who are forced to switch places.

The film’s humor comes from its satirical take on the stock market and its characters’ outlandish behavior. Murphy and Aykroyd give unforgettable performances that showcase their comedic talents, later serving as a launching pad for them in Hollywood.

Trading Places is not only funny but astute at revealing how economic systems work by satirically highlighting social inequalities along with traders’ greed and overconfidence still relevant today.

Inside Job (2010)

Inside Job is a provocative documentary that delves into the inner workings of the 2008 financial crisis. The film explores how investment bankers and politicians contributed to causing one of America’s worst economic downturns in recent history.

Through interviews with financial experts and insiders, Inside Job takes viewers on a sobering journey to what exactly went down behind the scenes in motivating players to privatize gains while socializing losses.

The documentary reveals how greed drove some of Wall Street’s top executives’ actions leading to this infamous economic crisis. It is well-researched, provides comprehensive insights into the 2008 market crash and sheds light upon similar practices continuing today and affecting millions globally. 

Boiler Room (2000)

As one of the first films about stock market trading Boiler Room is often overlooked but remains one of the most competent depictions ever made. Directed by Ben Younger and starring Giovanni Ribisi, this movie showcases a group of young brokers running an illegal boiler room operation selling artificially inflated stocks.

Boiler Room expertly depicts the greed-driven mindset that often pervades such trades as these brokers sell lies to potential clients unaware of being scammed. This serves well in its portrayal and valuable takeaways for audiences particularly new investors or amateur traders stepping into this arena.

Margin Call (2011)

For a movie that revolves around a single day in the life of an investment bank as it faces impending financial ruin, Margin Call packs one powerful punch. Directed by J.C. Chandor and starring several big-name actors including Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Irons and Paul Bettany, among others; this film shows how top-level executives face tough decisions during times of crisis.

Margin call takes you inside Wall Street’s heart to examine what goes on behind closed doors when a company is on the verge of collapse. The characters are well-developed and layered, with each one representing different elements of trading that escalate due to risky indulgence.

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