A trio of acting dominates the storyline with Leonardo DiCaprio (Inception, The Departed, Titanic) at the helm. Leo's portrayal of Belfort balances on a tightrope of lovability and immorality. Even with his wishy-washy character, Leo leads the film in what is his best performance to date. Don't get me wrong, The Revenant is another great film in his filmography, but nothing beats the authenticity of this role. The other two screen-dominating roles are Jonah Hill (21 Jump Street, Superbad) as Donny Azoff and Matthew McConaughey (Interstellar, Dallas Buyers Club) as Mark Hanna. At a time when Jonah Hill was starting to take off, he plays the perfect henchman for Belfort to work with. Azoff is an oddball character that is shrouded in mystery. No actor could have been a better fit for this role. Alongside Hill and DiCaprio, McConaughey shines bright as a mentor for Belfort. Even though his role is short-lived, he is iconic and exciting to watch.
It still amazes me that this film is directed by Scorsese. The Wolf of Wall Street is not for all ages, but geared toward a specific audience. Anyone who is interested in economics might take offense with the film and its display of Wall Street crookedness. However, at a time when everyone dreamed of being rich, the film played well to young adults. Honestly, who doesn't dream of a life with the comfort of Jordan Belfort's. Of course there were clear flaws with living this sort of life, but you have to admit that being able to buy a yacht and go wherever you want in the world has an appeal. Scorsese's character study is able to appeal to wannabe millionaires even with a story as immoral as Belfort's.
The Bottom Line: Fine acting and a quick pace push this drug-filled film forwards, creating a piece of art that will be remembered by anyone who dreams of being rich.