Paul Dano stars in Dumb Money.

Dumb Money is Exultant Insanity

Reader Rating1 Votes

Dumb Money is Exultant Insanity. Disclaimer, while I dislike most Hollywood formulas, I still have not grown out of the Smart-Guy-Formula-Hollywood-Movie. (Henceforth forward shall be known as the SGFHM.) You take a new, counter-cultural idea, a total dweeb of a smart guy who sees the stupidity of it all and is out to just play out his logic to its societal illogical conclusion. Movies like; The Big Short, Concussion, Whiplash, Inside Job, Margin Call, Social Network. All with a special, I don’t know… je ne sais quoi.

Dumb Money Walkthrough

Keith Gill, a modest financial analyst hailing from Brockton, Massachusetts, embodies the ultimate underdog story. By day, he grinds away at his job, striving to provide for his family. However, during his precious free time, Keith transforms into the enigmatic online persona known as “Roaring Kitty,” sharing his financial insights via captivating YouTube live streams. Sadly, his own brother, Kevin, can’t resist poking fun at his quirky online endeavors, dismissing them as mere nerdy nonsense.

In the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic’s turmoil in June 2020, Keith spots a golden opportunity. The stock of video game retailer GameStop is plummeting, and he takes a daring leap of faith by investing his life savings into the struggling company. With unwavering determination, he regularly updates his loyal viewers via live streams, even in the face of skepticism from Kevin and his peers. Fast forward to January 2021, and the r/WallStreetBets community erupts with astonishing revelations. Prominent hedge fund firms, including Melvin Capital Management led by Gabe Plotkin, have been short-selling GameStop’s stock, betting on its imminent collapse. Unexpectedly, online buyers like struggling nurse Jennifer, GameStop employee Marcos, and the lesbian college duo, Riri and Harmony, launch a vigorous buying spree, causing a seismic surge in GameStop’s stock price. Plotkin and fellow investment CEOs hemorrhage hundreds of millions in losses, while Keith is suddenly hailed as a financial wizard.

The narrative takes an unexpected twist when r/WallStreetBets is temporarily shuttered due to “inflammatory and vulgar content.” Panic grips the GameStop investors, prompting a frenzied sell-off to preempt a perceived price nosedive. Robinhood, the nonprofit stock purchasing platform, falters in covering the transactions, leading co-chairman Vlad Tenev, influenced by Citadel LLC owner Ken Griffin, to halt GameStop stock purchases in a blatant attempt to manipulate its price downward. Although this maneuver ultimately succeeds, the ensuing backlash triggers a comprehensive investigation by the United States House Committee on Financial Services. Tenev, Griffin, Plotkin, and Keith are all summoned, the first three for their roles in the debacle and the latter under suspicion of exploiting the situation for personal gain. In the face of mounting scrutiny, Keith vehemently denies any wrongdoing, maintaining that he acted in accordance with standard investment practices.

As the dust settles, the aftermath reveals the profound impact on the key players. Plotkin is compelled to shutter Melvin Capital due to catastrophic losses. Robinhood finds itself entangled in a web of lawsuits, resulting in a significant decline in its’ standing in the stock market. Harmony utilizes her newfound wealth to alleviate her family’s financial burdens and solidifies her relationship with Riri. Marcos, on the other hand, chooses to bid farewell to GameStop, having sold a portion of his GameStop stock to pursue his own aspirations. Lastly, Keith opts to step away from the limelight by retiring from YouTube in late April. In a heartfelt gesture, he invests in an extravagant car for Kevin, aiming to put an end to his relentless nagging about borrowing his vehicle for food deliveries.

Thoughts on the Movie Dumb Money

The sentiment behind the movie is that Wallstreet has gamed the system. And it is a fact, that they have. Read the book Flash Boys. It’s all about buying access with speed. And what this movie taps into is the unfairness of how the guys manipulate our transactions 19 times before our buy order even gets to the order window. This is a fact. And if it doesn’t make you angry, or at the very least highly frustrated, then you aren’t paying attention.

Favorite line in the movie: “First, door dash is a job, and I’m a first responder…”

I will say, that the soundtrack (literally stolen from Social Network) sort of got to me. Yes, it was Social Network the soundtrack part 2. But it nailed it in so many brilliant ways. Best part? The soundtrack was crafted by Will Bates! (Wait, who’s Will Bates?) He did the soundtrack for I, Origins and Another Earth, that’s who.

So yeah, head to your local theater, and stick it to the man, by watching this movie. And heck, maybe the stock is due for another pump and dump…

Edited by: CY