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Peter Canavese Over-Pads “The Wolf of Wall Street”

In response to Peter Canavese’s 553‑word review of The Wolf of Wall Street on Groucho Reviews

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Grandiose in scope, “The Wolf of Wall Street” goes to excessive lengths to present its thesis. And this excess, like the subject it is based on, comes back to haunt it.

The enjoyment factor is high here. This piece engages the reader from the outset and tickles their fancy like a natural stimulant. One will no doubt get swept up in the world the author creates, as it is as bewitching as that which the premise inhabits. There is also a fair amount of humor thrown in for good measure, which alleviates the serious tone usually dominating a work of this type. So the reader will definitely not strain their brains here.

However, there are a few flaws with this piece that prevent it from being legendary. One that manifests repeatedly is Canavese’s insistence on citing completely inconsequential and ultimately irrelevant background aspects of the subject’s creator. Although fascinating and probably unbeknownst to many readers, it has no bearing on the premise before the author. Thus, he should stick to the facts and refrain from cluttering the reader’s mind with frivolous details.

The other is the length. Now granted, this is not a long piece by any means. However, given the author’s persuasive ability and the amount of evidence presented, it could have been cut down considerably. If critiques such as this were budgeted like feature films, the cost would over-justify the content by tens of millions. And in movie therms, that would result in box office failure. Fortunately, the expectations are far lower in this genre and the budget a drop in the well. But the point remains valid regardless.  

At the end of the day, the reader may not care about these two flaws. After all, entertainment is a pivotal factor in a field so competitive… and this piece certainly has no shortage of that. But one cannot help but speculate how much better it could be with just a little more “budgeting”.    

Quality of Writing Quality of Argument Spoiler Avoidance Presentation