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Claudia Puig Shines Again With Her Splendid “Prowls the ‘90s for Fun”

In response to Claudia Puig’s 535‑word review of The Wolf of Wall Street on USA Today

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Claudia Puig’s work has always been appealing and unassuming. She has an all-inclusive style that speaks to everyone in a way so many critics fail to do, and in “‘Wolf of Wall Street’ prowls the ‘9os for fun,” she comes through again. ‘

For one thing, she’s a master of concise writing. Take a look at her first sentence: “From Mean Streets to Wall Street, director Martin Scorcese is fascinated by clever, one-track-minded slimeballs.” Some critics would have taken paragraphs to talk about this director’s previous work before launching into a review of the movie in question, already having lost focus. Not Puig. In that one glorious sentence, the audience knows what she’s talking about, and they’re ready to read about another of this director’s “slimeballs.”

With each new insight and observation she makes, this critic gets to the point and stays on point. “Focused” is the very definition of most of her work, including this piece. Why say in six sentences what can be said  in two? Why use four paragraphs when one is sufficient? For example, “Hailing from working-class origins, Belfort begins his Wall Street career as a decent guy” tells the audience plenty about that character’s beginnings. No need for more. The reviewer trusts that the audience will find out  more if/when they see the film. She knows that her job is to tell them whether, in her opinion, it’s worthwhile doing so.

For yet another example of splendidly concise film critiquing from someone who has made a successful career of them, read ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ Prowls the ‘90s for Fun.   


Quality of Writing Quality of Argument Spoiler Avoidance Presentation