January 11, 2012

Margin Call

I saw the movie Margin Call yesterday night. It was a pretty suspenseful movie that dramatized the recent financial crisis of 2008. At the very least, the cast was very well selected and every actor was incredibly professional.

While I don't fully understand the financial crisis, nor am I claiming to be an expert on economics or finance, but the movie made me feel a little weird--especially at this point in my life where a lot of my peers in school do in fact go off in search of finance jobs.

One particular scene struck me--the scene where the character Seth Bregman (portrayed by Penn Badgley) is crying in the bathroom stall because he's afraid of getting fired. A little background info on Seth before I tell you how I felt. He's a 23 year old working in the Risk department at a large unnamed corporation who made $250,000 last year in bonuses and salary.

I was a bit annoyed as to why he was crying. Here's a young fresh graduate making six figures with an absolutely beaming future ahead of him. The crisis wasn't completely his fault nor does he probably even understand what's happening around him. So he just cries? He made five times the national median of a 25 year old male with a Bachelor's Degree and he's crying?

As a college undergraduate, I don't even know what I would do with $250,000. Pay off my student loans? Pay off my credit card? What then? I have no clue. Which is why the following scene really shocked me.
Seth Bregman: Will?
Will Emerson: Yeah?
Seth Bregman: Did you really make two and half million bucks last year?
Will Emerson: Yeah... I did.
Peter Sullivan: What do you do with all that money?
Will Emerson: I don't know really. It goes pretty quick.
Will Emerson: Well the tax man takes half of it up front. So now you got what... million and a quarter. Mortgage grabs another 300K, I gave 150 to my parents to live off, so now you got what?
Peter Sullivan: Eight hundred.
Will Emerson: I bought two cars last year for 150 total. Probably another 100 eating... 25 on clothes, put 400 away for a rainy day...
Seth Bregman: Smart.
Will Emerson: And what's that?
Peter Sullivan: 125 left.
Will Emerson: I spent $76,520 on booze, dancers, and whores.
Pretty amazing if you ask me.


On a side note, Zachary Quinto is so cool.

1 comment:

Jeffrey Shiau said...

still obsessed with Zachary Quinto?

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