Visuals have a longer-lasting impact than words. And if you think that you can learn about the stock market from books only, then you are wrong! The financial world has entered into the cinemas also and has become a hot topic in recent years.
The craze doesn't seem to end anytime soon. In this article, let's know the best movies any stock market enthusiast can't afford to miss.
Must watch Stock Market movies
Do you find college textbooks or investing novels too boring to read? No need to worry, we have got your back. Here’s another fun, entertaining, yet educational way to learn the Financial world.
The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)
Based on a book of the same name by Jordan Belfort, the movie shows his true story, from his rise to a wealthy stockbroker to his fall involving crime and corruption.
It starts in 1987 when Belfort (Leonardo Di Caprio) takes an entry-level job as a Wall Street stockbroker but loses it due to Black Monday. After making some fortunes with the pump and dump scheme in penny stocks, he opened his firm Stratton Oakmunt in 1989.
He becomes successful. Meanwhile, the FBI and US SEC were investigating the firm. To hide his money, he opened Swiss Bank Accounts. Eventually, the FBI arrested him. But his sentence was reduced. After his release, he hosted seminars on sales techniques to earn his living.
Bazaar is a thriller-drama film based on Rizwan's life. He was a stock trader. At an event, he impressed Shakun Kothari (Saif Ali Khan) with his stock advice. And he gets hired by him. His first trade was disastrous, but he covered the losses with insider trading. It made them closer.
Kothari informs him about the government's bids from telecom companies. And tells him that he has bribed a minister to select Skycom. And to become the owner. But Kothari had the last laugh as he cheated Rizwan for his profit. Thanks to the efforts, Kothari is arrested but gets bailed a month later. In the end, he tells his secretary that the Bazaar is open.
The Big Short (2015)
Based on the 2008 financial crash, it has three separate stories.
In 2005, the US housing market was unstable. Michael Burry proposes a credit default swap market, anticipating the collapse due to high-interest rates. It angered his clients. But the market collapses. And his fund's value increased by 489%, which he enjoyed alone.
Jared Venett enters the CDS market. It is discovered that mortgage brokers profited by selling the deals to Wall Street banks. Later, it is found that the CDS market is larger than the mortgage loans market itself. So the world economy is bound to collapse.
Charlie Geller and Jamie Shipley discovered Venett's presentation to invest in CDS. They realised that they could make a profit by shorting. But banks are maintaining values to sell them before the inevitable crash. They informed the press, but it was in vain. As the market started collapsing, they sold their swaps and made 170% profits.
This movie was inspired by the Harshad Mehta scam of 1992. The name is enough to guess the plot. But here is a synopsis:
Just like a typical movie, it features Subodh Mehta as a middle-class guy with limited opportunities. He enters the stock markets. He had high ambitions but got caught in a crime.
Trading Places (1983)
It is a comedy film about a commodities broker and a con artist who find their positions reversed as a bet by two millionaires. This movie describes their adventures and their revenge to be rich while making the millionaires poor simultaneously.
Wall Street (1987)
It revolves around Bud Fox, a junior stockbroker. He wanted to work with Gordon Gekko but could not impress him. So he tells him insider information about Bluestar with the help of his father. Gekko becomes his client and tells him to spy on the moves of British investors.
Bud is promoted and becomes wealthy, but he gains the attraction of the SEC. Gekko plans to dissolve Bluestar. However, Bud decides to disrupt his plans and manipulates the stock price to be up. Gekko dumps his shares. Later, Bud is arrested for insider trading. But he helped in getting evidence against Gekko, which reduces his sentence. After his release, he got a job at Bluestar.
Too Big to Fail (2011)
It focuses on the 2008 crash. It starts with reports about the mortgage industry crisis. It depicts the importance of certain financial institutions, which are so large that their failure would be dangerous for the entire economic system.
Margin Call (2011)
It is a financial thriller film focusing on the financial crisis of 2008. It looks like the crash was an opportunity for film producers to make fortunes.
An investment bank lays off massively. One of them was Eric Dale, head of risk management under Sam and Will. He was on an ongoing project but got laid off in between. Sullivan, one of the risk analysts, discovers that the volatility of the portfolio has exceeded the historical levels, which could cause severe loss. Meetings are held. And they decide to dump all of the toxic assets to limit the risk. It would ruin their reputation. But they decided to go along with it. They were successful in selling all toxic assets but incurred tremendous losses. This way, they were able to survive the crash.
Boiler Room (2000)
It is a crime drama film featuring the life of Seth Davis, a college dropout. He starts a casino and is recruited by Greg in a brokerage firm as a stockbroker trainee. Gradually, he discovers that the firm uses a pump and dump scheme.
After becoming a broker, he deceived Harry but felt guilty and resolved to shut down the firm. But he found that the founders are going to abandon it. So he decides to go public to help the victims. He is arrested by the FBI. But he helps them in gaining evidence and helps Harry in getting his money back.
This financial thriller film revolves around Naomi, an investment banker dealing in IPOs. She faced criticisms after the undervaluation of an IPO. To bounce back, she handles the IPO of Cachet. While analysing, she realised that the company was hackable. But she sold their shares. Then the story escalates to events leading to the downfall of the company.
The Bottom Line
In this article, you may have got an idea about the best stock market movies. So, instead of wasting your time watching the so-called popular shows, it is better to gain knowledge while enjoying these incredible movies.