Why ‘Wolf Of Wall Street’ Is Giving Us ‘GoodFellas’ Flashbacks

Trailer for Martin Scorsese's corporate greed flick bears more than a passing resemblance to the crime classic.

One day after locking in a December 25 release date, Martin Scorsese’s “The Wolf of Wall Street” got a spectacular trailer to celebrate the occasion.

Scorsese’s film about corporate greed in the early ’90s — like many of his other looks at different aspects of the criminal lifestyle — clocks in at an epic three hours. And judging by the latest “Wolf of Wall Street” trailer, it uses his signature kinetic style. MTV Movies also spotted some of the tell-tale signs that this is a big, bad Scorsese flick. Read on as we break down five of the most important.

Voice-Over
It’s the biggest giveaway: One of the most iconic style signatures of “Goodfellas”-era Scorsese is the use of voice-over to lay down some expositional detail. “As far back as I could remember, I always wanted to be a gangster”— those lines open Scorsese’s crime classic, and we get a similar version here.

“At the tender age of 22, I headed to the only place that befit my high-minded ambition,” explains Leonardo DiCaprio’s stockbroker Jordan Belfort. And suddenly, we have our new Henry Hill .

The American Dream
What is a Scorsese crime epic without the self-starter? In “The Wolf of Wall Street,” Jordan takes his firm from an abandoned auto-body shop to the very center of New York City’s financial district. It’s like how Henry Hill started selling cigarettes out of the back of a truck, and before you know it, he’s walking through the back entrance of the Copacabana.

Smart-Ass Sidekick
While Scorsese can never replace the manic psychosis of Joe Pesci (the actor hasn’t appeared in a movie since 2010′s “Love Ranch”), thankfully, the director has found Jonah Hill take to on the role of the sidekick who eggs on all the criminal activity. As Donnie Azoff, Hill balances out the dynamic duo of corporate greed and can argue that taping money to a woman’s breasts is a form of employment.

Greed
As with most of the criminal enterprises that Scorsese depicts, it’s greed that leads to a character’s undoing. Once the money starts rolling into Belfort’s operation, things like spending $26,000 on one dinner don’t seem that outrageous. (Even if the sides can cure cancer.) Naturally, to be this greedy requires some illegal activity, which leads to the final Scorsese standby.

The Downfall
Here’s a tip: Don’t get on Kyle Chandler’s bad side. What’s the point of watching a spectacular (and criminal) rise to power if the fall isn’t equally extravagant? Of course, Belfort’s going down, and a big part of enjoying his rise will be anticipating the fall — and the fall is certainly coming. It might not be the National Guard, but when Belfort goes down, it will be great.

Writer/editor for MTV. If it involves cowboys, spies, or hitmen, I'm there. All three would be ideal.
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