Money Lessons From Movies

For the average person, finance means stock market, currency exchange, and a whole other jumble of obscure words. To be honest, whether it's personal finance or otherwise, it is complicated and sometimes we need other non-educational content to make us understand. That is what movies are for!

The world of money is chaotic, and messy, and makes for great cinema, so here are five money movies that will not let you fall asleep!

1. The Big Short

The majority of us have lived through the 2008 economic crisis and if you weren’t born at that time, you probably heard of it. The movie is based on Michael Lewis’ book The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine and follows the traders who became aware of the housing market crisis and made money out of it. Before you watch any 2008 movie, you better start with this one. It literally explains the ins and outs of how the USA crumbled its own economy.

2. Parasite

It’s not your typical finance movie, but it’s everyman's finance movie. In a capitalist world, greed and class distinction will never cease to exist. So no wonder the Korean movie resonated with most of the world. The movie uses parallelism to show how the lives of the rich (the Park family) and the poor (the Kim family) are intertwined and vastly different at the same time. Not sure if this was intended or not, but the family names reflect the fact that they’re more poor than rich in this capitalist world.

3. The Pursuit of Happyness

This is probably the happiest saddest movie ever. It has shaped an entire generation and affirmed the “chase your dream and never give up” mantra. It’s based on the true story of Chris Gardner who went from being homeless to being the founder of his own brokerage firm ‘Gardner Rich & Co.’ in 1987. It’s a true rags-to-riches story, but it also shows the role of money in making or breaking your happiness, especially in a capitalist world.

4. Wall Street

Of course, Wall Street is on the list. The movie basically shaped our perception of stock brokers in general and not in a good way. Yet, it’s still entertaining! In a way, the movie shows the US as a microcosm of the vicious capitalist world where one would do anything – even if it’s illegal – to be on top.

5. The Tinder Swindler

Speaking of viciousness, the Tinder swindler is a documentary on conman Simon Leviev who swiped right on his Tinder victims as well as their money. The documentary shows how Leviev emotionally manipulated the victims and drained them of money leaving them in an estimated debt of $10 million! Given where he was raised, no wonder he is a criminal!

The documentary is an insightful cautionary tale on the dangers of online dating, the limitless greed of Man, and the obsessive materialism of this world.

Here are some honorable mentions; Inventing Anna (tv show), The Wolf of Wall Street, Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, and Joy.

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