Forget The Godfather and Glengarry Glen Ross. When it comes to valuable insights and sound bites that apply to the financial services world, Wall Street is the only movie that counts.
Nothing else comes close, and few movies have even dared tread on its turf — 2000's Boiler Room being one unfortunate exception. The June issue of Fortune stands as testament to Wall Street's long-standing influence, sporting a cover headshot of “Michael Douglas as Gordon Gekko” almost two decades after the movie's original run in theaters.
In fact, there's so much wisdom to be gleaned from Wall Street — on topics from interior decorating (go easy on the gold leaf) to dating (you have to be rich to afford a girl like Darien) — that Rep. would like to offer a refresher quiz.
Correct answers are worth two points each.
Which blue-chip companies did Lou Mannheim (Hal Holbrook') mention as role models when he told Bud Fox to “stick to the fundamentals”?
A. Marriott and Hewlett-Packard
B. General Motors and McDonald's
C. IBM and Hilton
What firm employed Bud Fox?
A. Thudder, Wicks
B. Jackson, Steinem
C. Morgan Stanley
What does DK stand for?
A. Didn't know
B. Devastating knockout
C. Don King
What did Gordon Gekko shred while Bud Fox was in his office?
A letter from the CEO of Teldar Paper
B. A 10-Q from Teldar Paper
C. A birthday card
At which landmark New York City restaurant do Bud Fox and Gordon Gekko have lunch on the day Gekko hands Fox a check for $1 million?
B. The Rainbow Room
C. Tavern on the Green
What board did Gordon Gekko pay $1 million to get on?
A. The Metropolitan Museum of Art
B. The Guggenheim
C. The Bronx Zoo
Which of the following was not on Darien Taylor's list of wants?
A. A perfect canary diamond
B. An original Rothko
C. World peace
What was one of the biggest attractions for Gordon Gekko in his intended liquidation of Bluestar?
A. A new set of private jets for his personal fleet
B. The opportunity to lay off hundreds of workers who trusted him and screw over Bud Fox in the process
C. $75 million in cash in an overfunded pension
Why did Gordon Gekko tell Bud Fox he was wrecking Bluestar?
A. Because I never liked you.
B. Because it's the most profitable path.
C. Because it's wreckable.
What, according to Mannheim, does man find when he looks into the abyss and there's nothing staring back at him?
C. The realization that it's time to get out of the financial services game
Bonus Question: (5 points)
One of the most oft-quoted lines from Wall Street is “Greed is good.” But that isn't exactly what Gordon Gekko said. What, exactly, did he say?
25 points: Sir Lawrence Wildman
20-24 points: Gordon Gekko
15-19 points: Lynch
10-14 points: Mannheim
5-9 points: Bud Fox
0-4 points: Marv
Writer's BIO: Christie Matheson, a former investment banker, is an editor at Boston magazine.
1. C; 2. B (Though Bud Fox did have a fling with an analyst from Thudder Wicks.); 3. A (As in “Didn't know who I was when the options he bought took a bath.”); 4. C (He asked Bud to surprise him, because “it's my birthday.”); 5. A (Gekko suggested the steak tartare, off the menu.); 6. C (It was so desirable, according to Gekko, because WASPs love animals, but can't stand people.); 7. B (She did, in fact, want world peace…in addition to the diamond, a Turner and “the best of everything.”); 8. C; 9. C (But his ultimate reason for that? “It's all about bucks, kid. The rest is conversation.”); 10. B (And that's what keeps him out of the abyss.)
Bonus : “Greed, for lack of a better word, is good.”