Martin Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street, based on Jordan Belfort’s memoir of the same name, is a film that I am both very excited for but also a bit skeptical of. Allow me to explain.
Firstly, for those who haven’t read the novel, know that it is one hell of a story. It’s outrageous, over-the-top, completely nuts and often hilarious. It really is an unbelievable tale and I’m eager to see how it translates to the big screen, especially with such a talented group of people behind it.
Unfortunately, there have been some problems with the film. For one, the original cut was in danger of receiving an NC-17 rating, which forced Scorsese to remove some of the more explicit material. Furthermore, the director originally planned for the film to be three hours (with rumors of a four hour cut lying around somewhere as well). Of course, the studio wasn’t too happy with this and they asked him to cut it down. Now, it’s at 165 minutes, according to THR, who also tell us that the rumored Christmas release date has been confirmed.
I don’t know about you, but I’m getting the feeling that the film will basically be a trimmed down, and more tame version of the book. Now, while I’m still hoping that the four, or at least, three hour cut, makes it onto the Blu-Ray, I do understand why Paramount asked Scorsese to shorten the runtime. Not many films run for three hours and to put something that long into theatres is a risk. It’s been done before, but I think most studios would ask a director to trim their film if it ran for three hours or more.
What I’m not happy about though is the fact Scorsese is going to have to hold back a bit. As I said above, the book is pretty wild and some of the stuff that happens is just nuts. I can easily see how the film got an NC-17. An R rating isn’t the worst thing in the world, but it does mean that the film won’t be as explicit and as crazy as the novel, which isn’t a good thing. Part of the reason the novel works so well is because it’s just such an unbelievable story. Much of its humor comes from the fact that you are literally shocked that some of these things actually happened. If the film chooses to play it safe, it may lose that effect.
All that being said, with Scorsese behind the camera, and DiCaprio leading a cast that includes Jonah Hill, Matthew McConaughey, Kyle Chandler and Jean Dujardin, I’m going to remain cautiously optimistic that things will turn out alright for this one.
The Wolf Of Wall Street hits theatres on December 25th, 2013. Be sure to check back later tonight as a new trailer for the film will be released, which we’ll have for your viewing pleasure.