ABC Film Challenge – Thriller – Z – Margin Call (2011)

This is going under Z because of Zachary Quinto.

Director: J.C. Chandor

Writer: J.C. Chandor (Screenplay)

Starring: Kevin Spacey, Paul Bettany, Jeremy Irons, Zachary Quinto, Penn Badgley, Simon Baker, Mary McDonnell, Demi Moore, Stanley Tucci

Plot: Follows the key people at an investment bank, over a 24-hour period, during the early stages of the 2008 financial crisis.


Tagline – Be first. Be smarter. Or cheat.

Runtime: 1 Hour 47 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Tense Financially Thriller

Story: Margin Call starts on a normal day in an investment bank, today is going to be different though, because today the company is going to be facing massive layoffs, with Eric Dale (Tucci) being the first to go, leaving just 20% of the work force of his floor left.

Sam Rogers (Spacey) learns that Eric has discovered something that could ruin the company, Peter Sullivan (Quinto) proves it to be right and must turn to his risk manager Will Emerson (Bettany), which brings the boss John Tuld (Irons) in to cover up, the situation which could change the market forever.

Thoughts on Margin Call

Characters – Eric Dale is the man that is let go first, he has managed to discover something which will change the company forever, he doesn’t get to finish or expose this before leaving, with everyone looking for him. Sam Rogers runs the floor and is needing to move quick to get the truth to the boss, trusting the few employees that he has left. Peter Sullivan is the one the proved the problem, he goes to his bosses and needs to explain the problems the company will be facing. Will Emerson is the connection between the employees on the floor and Sam, he advices the younger members of the team and shows how to break down the money he has made through his career. Sarah leads part of the team that is investigating what is happening, while John Tuld is the owner of the company that will demand answers in the simplest form and make the big decisions about the future of the employees.

PerformancesWe do have an all-star cast here with stars from different levels of their generations, Jeremy Irons is the true star, making such a big impact once he appears, Paul Bettany is great to watch with the truly confident performances and Zachary Quinto stepping into the film world never looking out of place. Everyone is great to watch throughout everything that unfolds.

StoryThe story here follows 24-hours in the world of an investment bank company as they look to cover up an error that will destroy their reputations and they look to cash in before it is too late. We do get to see just how heartless the financially world can be, with the people involved will do to save their own backsides. We do get to dive into a lot of the world, though we don’t learn everything about the deal which is going wrong, which is meant to be around a true story, we will be engaged in everything unfolding because we don’t know who will give the most important information along the way.

ThrillerThis is an interesting thriller that does keep us on edge of your seat as we wait to see how everything will land once the storm is done on the company.

SettingsThe film is set inside the main building as we see the meetings taking place, that will be dealing with different ideas, while the people around the floor will be leaving.


Scene of the Movie – John Tuld’s first appearance.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Not learning about the actual deal that is causing the problems.

Final Thoughts This is a tense thriller that shows us how quickly the banking world can be turned upside down.

Overall: Keeps You Guessing.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.