Top 10 Movies That are Related to Stock Trading

29/06/2021

Financial markets have always been an attractive topic for the cinema industry. A lot of movies have been released in Hollywood that portray the life of investors with their stories of risk-taking, wins, or losses. However, the trading scenery sometimes can go even more intense with its dramas and not very happy endings but this is what makes those movies even more interesting.

Traders should remember that those movies will not help them truly understand what real stock trading is like because in most cases, the stories shown in these films are too exaggerated and dramatized. However, people who are interested in investing in the stock market may find them very entertaining and interesting.

There are top 10 movies that are related to the stock market including

  • The Big Short
  • Margin Call
  • The Wolf of Wall Street
  • Boiler Room
  • Wall Street
  • Floored
  • Trading Places
  • Barbarians At The Gate
  • Inside Job
  • Too Big to Fail

This article will analyze how each of these stories expresses the sense of trading in the stock market and how authentic they are.

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Top 10 stock trading movies

If you are a stock market trader then you would probably be interested in watching movies related to the financial markets. Those types of films have been a hot topic in Hollywood because in most cases, a lot of drama is going on in this field. This means that there is always some exciting trading story to tell.
 
Some of these trading movies have even become Academy Award nominees and even winners such as The Big Short and The Wolf of the Wall Street.
 
There are 10 important movies that you could consider watching when it comes to stock trading such as The Big Short Margin Call, The Wolf of Wall Street, Boiler Room, Wall Street, Floored, Trading Places, Barbarians At The Gate, Inside Job, and Too Big to Fail.
Let’s take a look at each of them in a detailed way.
 

The Big Short

 
The movie The Big Short was produced in 2015 according to the book by Michael Lewis. The movie is directed by Adam McKay and it tells the story of the 2008 US market crash which has been the biggest crash in the history of the US stock market. Even if you don't know a lot about this mortgage crisis, you will probably guess the high level of quality of the movie and might want to find out more information about the international economic collapse after the film is over.
This movie portrays the history of some of the professional investors who predicted the potential financial market crash and consequently gained a big amount of money from this collapse. This is a real-life story of real individuals. Their characters are played by Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling, Steve Carell, and Brad Pitt.
 
The director wanted to give detailed insight to the public with his portrayal of those people who benefited from the 2008 collapse. This story tells the traders that foreseeing the upcoming events and knowing how the market performance can go in the future is a key thing in trading in the stock market that can cause an investor millions of dollars in their potential payouts.
The Big Short is an Academy Award-winning film for the best writing and adapted screenplay. It plays an enormous role in understanding how complex and risky the financial markets are in the world.
 

Margin Call


 
Margin Call is a movie that was released in 2011, directed by J.C Chandor. It depicts the story that was happening in the investment bank during the economic crisis in 2008. The movie portrays the events that occurred at this period of time, leading to a near-collapse of the investment bank based in New York. Margin Call shows how huge the financial institutions are and what is the inspiration and goals of the traders who work in them.
The movie scenery takes place at a Wall Street firm in 2008 when the leaders realize that the potential market movements will crush them if they do not stop selling the assets that made them a substantial amount of money. A senior risk analyst like most of his colleagues could not see that the financial market is a risky business and it can collapse at any minute.
The important thing about the movie is that it is not necessary to know all about this market in order to understand what is the main point of the film. Margin Call is mainly about how the characters are worried about the welfare of their company only and they believe that the well-being of the public is something that should be taken for granted. Companies at the stock market are not acting in a moral way, they only exist in order to generate a big profit and they do not worry about what human cost it might have.
The movie was nominated for the Academy Award for the best writing and original screenplay. It already gives us the clue about how truly amazing the movie was and how good it depicts the reality of the financial markets.
 

The Wolf of Wall Street


 
The Wolf of Wall Street is one of the most popular Wall Street movies ever created in Hollywood. It was directed by Martin Scorsese and the main character was played by the Academy Award-winning actor Leonardo DiCaprio.
 
The movie is about the famous broker Jordan Belfort, who makes a lot of money by tricking many investors. After a big reduction in the market, he lost his job and started selling penny stocks. After that he discovered that there was a higher commission on penny stocks, so he founded his company called Stratton Oakmont, where he continued selling penny stocks and had substantial returns. He managed to become rich and one of the largest parts of the Wall Street market so he was living his best life.
 
However, the glory did not go on for so long. The main character discovered the negative side of success and met some ethical problems in life. It is not surprising that the movie is full of crime and corruption as it is a major characteristic of almost all movies about this industry.
Martin Scorsese successfully managed to portray the true events that were going on in the late 80s and 90s. Probably the major point of this movie is how easily success can turn into a failure when it comes to trading in the US stock market.
 
This Hollywood movie was extremely successful as it was nominated for five Oscars including the best achievement in directing and best motion picture of the year. Even though it did not manage to win any of the nominations, we can say that it is one of the best films ever created about the financial market industry.
 

Boiler Room


 
Boiler Room is an American movie directed by Ben Younger. Its main issue is about financial crimes that occur through a lot of stockbroker companies around the world. The movie depicts the true story of stock trading. It is important to note that there are no specific trading terms used in this film or any NYSE scenes because the main point is to show the results of trading in this financial market. 
 
The movie gives people a good explanation of how people generate big amounts of money by trading in stock markets. There are a lot of famous actors in this movie including Ben Affleck, Vin Diesel, and so on who had an amazing acting performance that made the movie even more exciting.
 
It is essential to note that the movie is not too dramatized with romantic moments and it truly depicts the real side of the financial world which is probably the greatest advantage of this movie. The Boiler Room is like an alert to the US stock market investors to be very cautious about the broker firms who trick them in order to generate big amounts of money. 
Even though the movie was produced almost 21 years ago, the major topic is still relevant in today’s world so people who are interested in investing in the US stock market might want to watch this amazing movie.
 

Wall Street


 
Another important movie that needs to be mentioned while talking about the top 10 stock trading movies is Wall Street which is probably the oldest movie about this industry. The film was produced back in 1987 and is directed by Oliver Stone.
 
This Hollywood movie truly depicts the real situation that is happening in the US stock market. The main character of the movie is the stockbroker who wants to succeed and does almost anything to reach the highest points. He is attracted to power and money and at last, he becomes a very influential person in the Wall Street market. However, he soon realizes that this power and success comes at a price that needs to be paid. This is because the main character selected the wrong way in achieving success in this industry.  He tried to gather illegal information which became the reason why he eventually ended up in prison.
 
This movie is probably the classic case when it comes to the portrayal of stock trading. The quality as well performance of this movie is very high, this is why it is a winner of an Academy Award.
 

Trading Places


 
Another important movie to discuss is Trading places which is also one of the oldest Hollywood movies. It is directed by John Landis and is considered to be a comedy, however, it depicts one of the most serious issues related to trading in the US stock market.
 
The main characters are Mortimer and Randolph Duke who are brokers in the financial market. The movie depicts a lot of sad truths. This is depicted When the main character was going from the top of his US stock market trading career to the bottom in a surprisingly short period of time which is something to be astonished at and something that makes people think a lot about the drawbacks of the financial industry all over the world. The method in which the director conveys the story is very indifferent which makes the movie even more real and scary at the same time.
 
Even though there are a lot of funny moments in the movie we can freely say that the main point is too serious to think about and it is one of the hottest topics even in another decade of the 21st century.
 
The main characters are played by Denholm Elliott, Dan Aykroyd, and Eddie Murphy who showed us the amazing performance which played a big role in making this movie even more exciting to watch. Trading Places managed to reach a big success, as it was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Music, Original Song Score, and Its Adaptation or Best Adaptation Score. So we can highly recommend this movie to all the stock market lovers or people who are just interested in what is going on in the financial markets worldwide.
 

Barbarians At The Gate


 
Barbarians At the Gate was released in 1993 and is directed by Glenn Jordan. The major thing about this movie that needs to be mentioned is that it is based on the true story of F. Ross Johnson, the CEO, and president of the leading food and tobacco corporation called RJR Nabisco. The movie is mainly the story of greed extraordinarily played by an actor James Garner.
 
The main character takes control of the firm and makes himself extremely rich at the cost of other company employees. The director is concentrating on making a rather funny movie in order to make other people laugh. There is a very ridiculous and comic tone maintained throughout the whole movie. However, we can easily guess that the film is dedicated to satire, to depict the ugly face of the financial world and to show how aspiring for power and money can turn into something very unpleasant. The details play a huge role in this movie in almost every scene so people need to take a closer look at every dialogue in order to understand every important point of the director.
 
Barbarians At The Gate is another very successful movie that shows what it is like to be involved in the financial world. The movie managed to get two golden globes in Best Performance by an Actor in a Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television and in Best Performance by an Actor in a Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television by James Garner.
 

Inside Job


 
Inside Job is another successful movie about the well-known crises that took place in 2008. The movie was produced in 2010 and is a good portrayal of what happened on Wall Street at this period of time. This movie is about how the careless actions of Wall Street resulted in the crush of the whole financial world.
The scenery of Inside Job starts in Iceland where the wrong financial system in the 1990s led to three banks generating securities 10 times the country's overall GDP.
 
The movie is simply one of the most disappointing documentaries ever created. And this is probably what the director’s main goal was. The film is dedicated to depicting the ugly face of Wall Street members, credit agencies, and specifically regulatory bodies for the financial crisis that occurred in 2008. The good thing about the movie is that there is no comic tone maintained throughout the whole script and the performance of the actors is extremely good. The actors include Hollywood stars such as Matt Damon and Gylfi Zoega.
 
We all know that a lot of movies have been produced about this issue, however Inside Job is truly one of the best as it gives people a clear understanding of the overall picture including How We Got Here, The Crisis itself, the Accountability, and What happened after the crisis. Deep analysis of the historical events gives watchers an opportunity to better understand every aspect of the 2008 financial crisis and to consider a lot of other influential factors that were related to this collapse.
 
It is not surprising that the movie was nominated for the Academy Award and even became the winner for the Best Documentary, and Features.
 

Too Big to Fail


 
Too Big to Fail was released in 2011, directed by Curtis Hanson. This is another movie that is focused on the 2008 financial crisis as the main theme. The words Too Big To Fail was one of the frequently used terms at this period.
 
Probably every investor in the stock market can relate to the main point of this film as it is the most accurate depiction of the economic and financial condition that took place in the last decade. The term Too Big To Fail represents the idea that specific corporations and financial institutions are so huge in their scopes that their collapse would cause a big crisis in not only local but the international economy as well.
 
This movie is a documentary that is based on the book with the same title by Andrew Ross Sorkin. The main characters of the movie- William Hurt, and Paul Giamatti predicted the possibility of a potential crisis in the 21st-century called The Great Depression.
 
Even though the movie has a lot of bad reviews, it is still considered to be one of the best films that were ever created about the issue of the 2008 crisis. Too Big to Fail managed to gain big success as it was nominated for three golden globes including Best Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television as well as the Best Performance by an Actor in a Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television by William Hurt and Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television by Paul Giamatti.
 
So if you are interested in what bad consequences the stock market trading might have, you should definitely watch this movie to find out.
 

Floored


 
Another important movie that needs to be mentioned in this article is Floored that was released in 2009 and was directed by James Allen Smith. This movie is considered to be a financial classic as it clearly depicts the environment of the trading floor and gives people an opportunity to find out a lot of important features of floor trading. This is why it is a very informative documentary movie that tells a lot about how chaotic trading in the stock market can be.

However, the good thing about the movie is that it is not too dramatic and romanticized, it is quite entertaining to watch. Besides, another noticeable feature of the movie is that it is based on a true story. The movie is about a time when millions of people lost a big amount of money in the stock market and there was a big fear about the collapse of the financial system. We can freely say that Floored may be a detailed glimpse behind the curtain of the trading floor that probably no one has ever seen before.

If you are an investor then you know how intense the dynamics of the stock market are. This is what the movie Floored expresses. To be a part of this industry requires a lot of risk-taking capabilities as well as the ability to withstand stress.  The movie has very positive feedback and a lot of people believe this is one of the best films ever created about the stock market trading with Wall Street and Boiler Room and many others. Probably one of the best parts of Floored is that James Allen Smith and Andrew McAllister both managed to create the scenery where the traders and financial market, in general, would not be romanticized. This is why Floored reached its success and remains the accurate movie about this issue even today.
 

Final thoughts on top 10 stock trading movies

We discussed that the financial markets have always been an attractive topic for the cinema industry. There have been a lot of movies released in Hollywood that portray the life of traders with their stories of risk-taking, wins, or losses, and their career life in general.
 
Even though in most cases those movies are based on the true story, it does not mean that traders should treat them like the guide to success or use them for educational motives. The reason for this is that every story in the stock market is an individual story with its own dramas and failures or winnings.
 
The real trading in the stock market is probably way different from the movies because in most cases, the stories in Hollywood movies are too exaggerated and dramatized. However, people who are interested in investing in the stock market may find them very entertaining and interesting. Some of these trading movies have even become Academy Award nominees and even winners.
 
There are 10 insightful movies that you could consider watching when it comes to stock trading such as The Big Short Margin Call, The Wolf of Wall Street, Boiler Room, Wall Street, Floored, Trading Places, Barbarians At The Gate, Inside Job, and Too Big to Fail. We have analyzed each of these movies in a detailed way so if you are interested in watching stock market-related films they indeed are the top picks for you.
 
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FAQ on the stock trading movies

What television shows or movies related to investing?

There are top 10 movies that are related to stock market investing including The Big Short Margin Call, The Wolf of Wall Street, Boiler Room, Wall Street, Floored, Trading Places, Barbarians At The Gate, Inside Job, and Too Big to Fail.
 

What should I watch after Wolf of Wall Street?

There are a number of films related to the main idea of Wolf of Wall Street. Such types of films include The Big Short, Margin Call, Boiler Room, Wall Street, Floored, Trading Places, Barbarians At The Gate, Inside Job, and Too Big to Fail. However, if you do not have time to watch every one of these movies, probably the best pick for you would be The Big Short.
 

What to watch to learn about stocks?

There are several films to watch if you want to learn more about the stock market including The Big Short Margin Call, The Wolf of Wall Street, Boiler Room, Wall Street, Floored, Trading Places, Barbarians At The Gate, Inside Job, and Too Big to Fail. But remember that these movies will not help you truly understand what real stock trading is like because in most cases, the stories shown in these films are too exaggerated and dramatized.
 

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