It was 13 years ago this month when news broke that the Wall Street investment firm Lehman Brothers collapsed, setting in motion the financial crisis that devastated the world’s economy.
For all the misery the financial meltdown caused, Americans have never balked at opportunities to relive the crisis through hundreds of films, books and even plays. But while greedy investment bankers have become a staple archetype of recent movies like The Wolf of Wall Street, The Big Short, and Margin Call, Hollywood hasn't always portrayed Wall Street with such cynicism. In 2018 Brooke spoke to Per Hansen, professor of business history at the Copenhagen Business School, about his study examining cinematic depictions of big business and financial institutions. Hansen sifted through 81 films to understand how America's volatile attitudes on capitalism have evolved through other periods of boom and bust. He and Brooke discussed how classics like Wall Street, It's a Wonderful Life, and The Apartment have reflected and actively shaped the way we feel about money.
This segment is from our September 14th, 2018 episode, Doomed to Repeat.