‘Equity’ Highlights the Glass Ceiling and Dirty Dealings

GameStop, Inc.

equity-0002

It’s hard being a woman in the workplace. There are issues like the pay gap and sexism so engrained within the minds of men that they don’t even realize that they’re unwilling to give a woman in the workplace an equal shot as other men. These issues are compounded by the fact that many men are simply unwilling to acknowledge that these biases even exist, let alone that they may have some factor within their own judgement. Women in the workplace are front and center in Equity, the new drama from director Meera Menon, a strikingly cynical and uneven piece of filmmaking about high-stakes finance and questionable ethics.

Naomi Bishop (Anna Gunn) works for a powerful investment firm overseeing the initial public offerings (IPOs) of tech companies. Her last one fell through and has left a black stain on her otherwise stellar career in finance, but her boss (Lee Tergesen) is going to use this one error to prevent her from getting a promotion. Naomi is told they want a “rainmaker.” In her personal life, Naomi is having romantic evenings with Michael Connor (James Purefoy), a broker at the same firm. However, the two are forbidden from discussing the details of their work, as Naomi is privy to information that might give Michael an unfair advantage on the stock market. It’s a law they must follow to avoid charges of insider trading. Meanwhile, Naomi’s old college friend Samantha (Alysia Reiner) works for the Justice Department and is investigating Michael and his client Benji Akers (Craig Bierko), an extremely wealthy hedge fund manager.

At present, Naomi is overseeing the IPO of a tech company that specializes in privacy with the help of her loyal assistant Erin (Sarah Megan Thomas). But Erin has to worry about her career, and the fact that she’s just learned she is pregnant could undermine all of the professional progress she’s made. The IPO they are representing has its own set of problems that have been shielded from the public and investors by the company’s CEO (Samuel Roukin), who uses his professional leverage to pressure Erin into an affair. As all of this unfolds, Naomi is trying to maintain her integrity as her lover is sneaking around looking for any possible information that could help him stay in the good graces of Benji. All the while Samantha and Justice Department tries to hold any potential wrongdoers accountable, except this is America.

With Equity, Meera Menon does a good job in keeping all of the film’s moving parts working in service of the story, a number of characters and plot developments bouncing off each other before the film’s resoundingly cynical conclusion. Though Naomi is the front-and-center character, she’s really not the most interesting of the film’s varied women. Naomi is always in the right, a moral beacon in an immoral world; Anna Gunn does a magnificent job as that moral compass as she did Breaking Bad. But the tough decisions and the larger moral quandary at the center of Equity are Sarah Megan Thomas’s Erin and Alysia Reiner’s Samantha. (Megan Thomas is credited with the film’s story while Reiner is a producer.) These are characters existing a world where successful and competent women are pitted against each other for survival, while mediocre men skirt on by never to be held accountable.

If there’s one weak aspect to Equity, it’s the way the film’s male characters have the ability to come across as a cartoonish caricatures. Mind you, this isn’t me mounting a “Not all men” defense of the film’s unflattering characters representing the patriarchy, it’s just a simple reaction to the mustache-twirling villainy that these character embody without much depth. It simply boils down to a dramatic decision from director Menon and writers Sarah Megan Thomas and Amy Fox that highlights a gender dynamic (which should be highlighted) and not a character dynamic that undermines the film’s dramatic weight.

Equity is a good drama geared for adults that just lacks that extra edge to push it into another realm. Sometimes a bit too heavy-handed, Equity highlights a major societal issue that too often seems to be swept under the rug or flat out ignored, and punctuated with an ending of unabashed American cynicism. The glass ceiling hasn’t been shattered and white collar criminal operate with impunity. Movies and art are rarely the direct catalyst for change in large societal issues, but films like Equity make it hard to turn away and deny the double standard that our society imposes upon women in the workplace as well as the thin line between virtuous capitalist and criminal insider trading. It’s not always great or pretty, but Equity packs a socially conscious punch.

Equity
  • Overall Score
3.5

Summary

A socially conscious drama about financial crimes and the inherent sexism in the workplace, Equity nimbly balances its drama and social commentary in a sharp drama geared for adults.

Anytime Costumes

Leave a Reply

Animation/Anime Interviews Animation/Anime News Animation/Anime Reviews Film/TV Interviews Film/TV News Film/TV Review
#ICYMI Kevin Pollak Talks About Playing Jack Adams in ‘Goalie’

San Francisco native and comedic actor, Kevin Pollak co-stars as legendary...

‘Almost Love’ has an 90s Indie Rom-Com-Drama Feel in 2020

Almost Love is romantic comedy about a group of friends figuring...

Faruq Tauheed Gets to the ‘Roots’ of Things

Beginning April 4, 2020, NBC will be launching their three hour...

Event News Event Reviews
‘A Black and White Cookie’ A Play About Racial Harmony Hits NYC

Press Release – (New York, NY) – Ego Actus Theatre Company...

Katee Sackhoff Receives Vanguard Award at SOVAS – Interview

Katee Sackhoff has become a television and voice over icon in...

Adam Rocha Celebrates the Silver Anniversary of the San Antonio Film Festival

The San Antonio Film Festival (SAFilm) is celebrating 25 years of ...

Enabled Gaming Gaming News Gaming Reviews
Marvel United Funded
Marvel United Funded – Only Hours Left to Back Marvel United

Marvel United funded in the first 31 minutes! Now you only...

Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary Available Now for PC

Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary Available Now for PC with The Master...

Marvel United
Marvel United – The First-Ever Marvel Game on Kickstarter

Marvel United, the first-ever Marvel game on Kickstarter brought to us...

Comic Creator Interviews Comic/Graphic Novel News Comic/Graphic Novel Reviews Manga News Manga Reviews Novel/Novella Author Interviews Novel/Novella News Novel/Novella Reviews
Sci-Fi Writers’ Roundtable and What We Can Learn from the Genre During These Trying Times

Sci-Fi writers Lexy Wolfe, Robert Davies, Caytlyn Brooke and Gary Morgenstein...

9/10
Batman: The Adventures Continue Chapter One – Review

Title: Batman: The Adventure Continues #01 Writers: Alan Burnett and Paul...

9/10
Shazam! 10: The Gingerbread War! Review

Title: Shazam! 10 Writer: Geoff Johns Pencils: Dale Eaglesham and Scott...

Apparel/Personal Maintenance News Apparel/Personal Maintenance Reviews Entertainment Product News Entertainment Product Reviews Food/Beverage Reviews Hardware News Hardware Reviews Mystery Box News Mystery Box Reviews
McCafé Frappé
McCafé Frappé in a Bottle is a Great Way to Start the Day

McCafé Frappé in a Bottle is the best way to start...

Consumable Gift List 2019
FBN Consumable Gift List 2019

Our Consumable Holiday Gift List 2019 – The best gift to...

LS50X Snoop Dogg Limited-Edition Headset
LucidSound Announces LS50X Snoop Dogg Limited-Edition Headset Pre-Order

LucidSound announces LS50X Snoop Dogg Limited-Edition headset pre-order opening November 19...

Automotives Football MMA, Kick Boxing & Boxing Professional Wrestling
LA Wildcats Fall to the Dallas Renegades in the Home Opener

Sunday, February 16, 2020 – In the second game of the...

Houston Roughnecks to Host XFL Championship Game

From the XFL – HOUSTON, February 13, 2020 – The XFL,...

Jeff Martin Opens Dream MMA School and is Set to Fight at Lights Out XF on March 13

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) veteran, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt and now...

Adult Continuity Comics on the Can Cultural Junk Drawer Future Comic Rock Stars Is That Racist? Revisiting the Reviled THAT'S NOT ROTTEN! The B-Reel The Cantina Scene This Week in Crowdfunding What the HELL Did I just...?
Fantoy Comics Presents: Harry Potter and the Wizard Rumble pt: 7

Cedric is surprised at the Dark Lord's new digs.

Fantoy Comics presents: Harry Potter and the Wizarding Rumble pt:6 – stakes!

Comics on the Can: The Highwaymen Issue #4

COMICS ON THE CAN   The Highwaymen Issue #4   Writers:...

Gaming Uncensored Toon-In-Talk
Toon-In Talk Episode 36: Rob Paulsen

Rob Paulsen takes some time from his busy voice acting schedule...

Toon-In Talk Episode 35: Michael Dooley

Oh, dear!  I did it again!  I went on an unintended...

Episode 34: Chris Prynoski

Whitney Grace is digging through her queue of old new stock...

Music Interviews Music News Music Reviews
Comedy Duo Ben Giroux and Jensen Reed Take Us, ‘Back To The 80s’

Two of the funniest men in show business, Ben Giroux (Hart...

James Maslow ‘Rush’es the Stage to Perform at Super Girl Surf Pro on Sunday

James Maslow is an American singer, actor and songwriter best known as the star of...

Jason Lazarus Talks about Composing the Music for ‘Teen Titans Go! vs Teen Titans’

Jason Lazarus is a Los Angeles based composer for film, television, and...