Both The Wolf of Wall Street and Citizen Kane show
men accumulating wealth, acquiring mistresses, divorcing their wives
and succumbing to decadence and power. But where Scorsese significantly
differs from Welles’ vision is in the ending. Welles may have lamented
Kane’s loss of innocence by materialising it in a sled, but Scorsese
exposes materialism itself. His film closes with an image of Jordan
Belfort’s captivated audience wishing to learn his secrets of success.
That final image is an unflinching mirror of us, the audience secretly
wishing for our own Belfort-scale wealth.
Steven Benedict is a writer, producer and director of multi-award winning films. He is also a contributor to several shows on Newstalk106. Having lectured for several years in
University College, Dublin, the National College of Art and Design
and the National Film School, he recently graduated with First Class
Honours from the Staffordshire University MSc in Feature Film Production