There’s a lot of star power here. Michael Lewis is a fantastic storyteller. Adam McKay is… a departure. The subject matter is important to all of us. But I don’t want to talk about any of that. I want to focus on the hair choices for this film. Because, honestly, why not.
First off, did the costume department consciously decide to turn Brad Pitt into Robert Redford? It’s quite the beard and hair and glasses combo, managing to obscure most of his movie star looks. Steve Carrell, meanwhile, sports an oddly highlighted mop, it’s deflated flopping matching his character’s dejection—it sounds like the self-pitying portion of Crazy, Stupid, Love, only he’s been let down by the greed of corporations and the stupidity of the American people instead of the breakup of his marriage. And what the hell, Ryan Gosling? Somehow his slicked-back, corporate ‘do manages to render one of the handsomest men alive into a predatory looking banker. Which, if that was the intention, well done. He’s oddly tan, looking like a failed projection of beauty, some kind of nouveaux-riche grasp at traditionally good looks. Apparently, money can buy you everything but taste and legit beauty, so he’s become a Jersey Shore extra in a bespoke suit. Finally, we have Christian Bale, whose shaggy, boyish locks are surely meant to convey his outside-the-box approach to finance. They even mention he goes to Supercuts! What horror to the impeccably coiffed bastions of taste inhabiting the doomed banks of the establishment. Hamish Linklater shows up briefly with the same exact hairstyle (and shirt) from “The Newsroom.” Rounding it out are balding establishment types, virile and curly-headed banker bros, and that one guy with the buzz cut in group shots who looks kinda like the muscle.
There are a lot more things to discuss when it comes to this movie, clearly, but right now I’m honestly curious to see if this is the next mainstream hit post-American Hustle to take such bold steps with wigs. I’m going with yes.