Bhaskar Chanda |2014 Reading List | 2 of 14

FIASCOFiasco | It is the shocking story of one man’s education in the jungles of Wall Street. As a young derivatives salesman at Morgan Stanley, Frank Partnoy learned to buy and sell billions of dollars worth of securities that were so complex many traders themselves didn’t understand them. In his behind-the-scenes look at the trading floor and the offices of one of the world’s top investment firms, Partnoy recounts the macho attitudes and fiercely competitive ploys of his office mates. And he takes us to the annual drunken skeet-shooting competition, FIASCO, where he and his colleagues sharpen the killer instincts they are encouraged to use against their competitiors, their clients, and each other.

FIASCO is the first book to take on the derivatves trading industry’s most highly charged and risky sector of the stock market. More importantly, it is a blistering indictment of the largely unregulated market in derivatives and serves as a warning to unwary investors about real fiascos, which have cost billions of dollars.

The Grand Budapest Hotel is Another Wes Anderson Success

Bhaskar Chanda The Grand Budapest HotelThe Grand Budapest Hotel is another smash hit from the quirky, peculiar director, Wes Anderson. In typical Wes Anderson fashion, each character has their own unique story that leads them through a series of chaotic adventures. This story takes us back in time, where “the richest man in the world,” Zero Moustafa, tells the story of how he made his fortune to the local hotel concierge.

The story follows an extraordinary concierge, M. Gustave, at one of the most famous European hotels, The Grand Budapest Hotel. M. Gustave is played by Ralph Fiennes. His most trusted ally is the young Zero Moustafa, the lobby boy, played by Tony Revolori. Zero quickly becomes M. Gustave’s assistant, which puts him in the middle of protecting an enormous family fortune when M. Gustave becomes the hair to the most expensive paining in the world. Amidst this time of war and crisis, Zero and M. Gustave are forced to team up and protect what is rightfully theirs from jealous and psychopathic family members.

Throughout the rest of the film, irreverent chase scenes and chaotic calmers of humor fill the time. A more extroverted style taken by Wes Anderson, as while there is still plenty of internal character development, there seems to be a lot more going on outside of each characters little world. There is a broader sense of history and outside forces, while many of his films delve into the interworking’s of a unique character.

Ralph Fiennes plays a spectacular conceded, pompous concierge while Tony Revolori fills the role of the quiet, nervous lobby assistant. Willem Dafoe plays one of the psychopathic relatives to the enormous family fortune. He is great in this role as he does not say much and uses his menacing face to do most of the talking.

Overall, this movie is another must watch, as another one of Wes Anderson’s zany stories is a homerun. 4.5/5 Stars