Opening

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—— Innocence Sep 05
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Margin Call Reviews

Ben Walters
Time Out
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Chandor proffers a cross-section of a Lehman Brothers-esque company as the realisation dawns that sub-prime speculation has brought the market to an ominous tipping point.

Full Review Source: Time Out | Original Score: 3/5

January 10, 2012
Laremy Legel
Film.com
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Carefully crafted performances and taut pacing carry the day.

Full Review Source: Film.com | Original Score: A-

November 29, 2011
Stephen Farber
Hollywood Reporter
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Topical drama about the financial crisis lacks the visceral punch to grab an audience.

Full Review Source: Hollywood Reporter

November 11, 2011
Justin Chang
Variety
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A methodical, coolly absorbing boardroom thriller.

Full Review Source: Variety

November 11, 2011
Stephen Cole
Globe and Mail
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Spacey is mesmerizing as Sam, a weary, aging lion losing his appetite for antelope. And Irons plays the villain with magisterial ease.

Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Original Score: 4/4

November 11, 2011
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
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It's a realistic take on what happens when high-flying money speculators suddenly hit ground. It's also a great calling card for J.C. Chandor, the writer/director making his feature debut.

Full Review Source: Toronto Star | Original Score: 2.5/4

November 11, 2011
Tom Long
Detroit News
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That Chandor manages to find the blood in each character is accomplishment enough; that he manages to make his drama both relevant and timeless portends a bright future indeed.

Full Review Source: Detroit News | Original Score: B+

October 28, 2011
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
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Margin Call is the movie Oliver Stone tried to make with Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, only a lot less flashy and melodramatic -- and sharper, smarter and with a much stronger cast.

Full Review Source: Miami Herald | Original Score: 3/4

October 28, 2011
Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
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A terrific piece of entertainment.

Full Review Source: Arizona Republic | Original Score: 4.5/5

October 27, 2011
David Denby
New Yorker
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Margin Call is one of the strongest American films of the year and easily the best Wall Street movie ever made.

Full Review Source: New Yorker

October 24, 2011
Christopher Orr
The Atlantic
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Chandor's film is not a tale of the plots and counterplots of conniving bankers. It is a disaster movie, in which even the Masters of the Universe are running for their lives.

Full Review Source: The Atlantic

October 21, 2011
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
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Writer-director J.C. Chandor then plunges us into a dark night of quietly nasty reckoning as it becomes clear to the firm's honchos that the calamitous risk assessments one of their own was working on might well be true.

Full Review Source: Denver Post | Original Score: 3.5/4

October 21, 2011
Dana Stevens
Slate
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This may be the first post-2008 feature film to dramatize the crisis itself, rather than using it as a backdrop for an outraged harangue against the banks.

Full Review Source: Slate

October 21, 2011
J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
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The real strength of '[Chandor's] debut feature is how persuasively it depicts the fishbowl world of high finance, whose executives seem incapable of seeing past their towering salaries and privileged lives.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

October 21, 2011
Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
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It's all fairly entertaining but also confusing for anybody who doesn't get the Wall Street lingo.

Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor | Original Score: B

October 21, 2011
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
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It sees its characters not as villains but, simply, as business people - with all that means.

Full Review Source: Newark Star-Ledger | Original Score: 3/4

October 21, 2011
Michael O'Sullivan
Washington Post
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A smart, harrowing and mordant drama set inside a fictional Wall Street firm at the trip-wire moment just before the 2008 financial collapse.

Full Review Source: Washington Post | Original Score: 3.5/4

October 21, 2011
Lou Lumenick
New York Post
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Though fictionalized and understated, "Margin Call'' effectively voices the same outrage that the Occupy Wall Street movement is so loudly proclaiming.

Full Review Source: New York Post | Original Score: 3/4

October 21, 2011
Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News
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How good is J.C. Chandor's debut? So good I was ready to buy what he was selling even though I didn't entirely understand it.

Full Review Source: New York Daily News | Original Score: 4/5

October 21, 2011
Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
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A taut, smart and remarkably timely thriller...

Full Review Source: Seattle Times | Original Score: 3/4

October 20, 2011
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
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It opens with a bloodbath, builds to an apocalypse and ends with a gravedigger doggedly excavating the earth. By the time the story is told, the blood -- sorry, red ink -- is surging down long corridors like a tidal wave.

Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune | Original Score: 3/4

October 20, 2011
Mary F. Pols
TIME Magazine
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Margin Call might have lost me completely if it weren't for Spacey, who delivers his meatiest, most nuanced work in years.

Full Review Source: TIME Magazine

October 20, 2011
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
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Chilling and enjoyable in unequal measure. Entertainment predominates, but entertainment with smarts, and a well-honed edge.

Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal

October 20, 2011
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
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Margin Call is rife with smart, sharp performances.

Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer | Original Score: 2.5/4

October 20, 2011
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
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"Margin Call" takes ripped-from-the-headlines events and dramatizes them for all they're worth. Which turns out to be quite a lot.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times | Original Score: 3.5/5

October 20, 2011
Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
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The severe imbalance between argot and emotion makes it impossible to care much about most of what we see.

Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Original Score: 2.5/4

October 20, 2011
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
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Margin Call is an explosive drama that speaks lucidly and scarily to the times we live in.

Full Review Source: Rolling Stone | Original Score: 3/4

October 20, 2011
Leah Rozen
TheWrap
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There are a lot of sharp performances here, a chief pleasure of the film.

Full Review Source: TheWrap

October 20, 2011
Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
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Chandor's impressive debut film does indeed capture its cast of high-powered bankers as human beings, and features one of Kevin Spacey's best screen performances as the firm's middle-aged ace salesman.

Full Review Source: Salon.com

October 20, 2011
A.O. Scott
New York Times
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It is a tale of greed, vanity, myopia and expediency that is all the more damning for its refusal to moralize.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 4/5

October 20, 2011
Joe Williams
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
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Within the artful fluctuations of heroism and villainy, Spacey stands out with a performance that evokes memories of "Glengarry Glen Ross."

Full Review Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch | Original Score: 3/4

October 20, 2011
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
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"Margin Call" is on the facile side, but it's well-crafted and smartly acted.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 3/4

October 20, 2011
Scott Tobias
AV Club
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[It] brings this dangerous numbers game back to the trading-floor desktops and mahogany-covered conference tables where it belongs.

Full Review Source: AV Club | Original Score: B

October 20, 2011
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
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"Margin Call" employs an excellent cast who can make financial talk into compelling dialogue.

Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Original Score: 3.5/4

October 20, 2011
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
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It captures how our financial institutions became secret havens to a selfishness so undiluted it was sociopathic. You watch this drama of big money with a tingle of toxic fascination.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: A-

October 19, 2011
Rex Reed
New York Observer
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As a movie, it's so tightly framed you gasp from claustrophobia. As a film of cryptic boredom, I cannot believe the actors were able to say their lines without cue cards.

Full Review Source: New York Observer | Original Score: 1/4

October 19, 2011
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
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Margin Call may not be telling things exactly as they were, but it's close enough to provide an uncomfortable glimpse behind the curtain. And it's an engrossing "thinking" thriller as well.

Full Review Source: ReelViews | Original Score: 3.5/4

October 19, 2011
Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out New York
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Escalation is the main thing Margin Call has going for it, as more substantial actors are trotted out to have their way with Chandor's realistic-sounding boardroom dialogue.

Full Review Source: Time Out New York | Original Score: 3/5

October 18, 2011
Melissa Anderson
Village Voice
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Chandor's debut feature audaciously asks us to empathize with obscenely overpaid risk analysts and their bosses, a gambit that fails... largely because his characters are little more than mouthpieces for blunt speechifying and Mamet-like outbursts

Full Review Source: Village Voice

October 18, 2011
Glenn Kenny
MSN Movies
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The atmosphere is evocative and the story reasonably tense, but the movie as a whole is surprisingly dry...

Full Review Source: MSN Movies | Original Score: 3/5

October 18, 2011
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
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Spacey does some of the best work we've seen from him in a while as a once-confident man who's now questioning everything upon which he built his cushy life.

Full Review Source: Associated Press | Original Score: 3/4

October 18, 2011
David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
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A hell of a picture. And shrewd.

Full Review Source: New York Magazine/Vulture

October 17, 2011
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