Julian Lowenthal appears yet again with her another American drama, Money Game. Though Lowenthal’s portfolio in filmmaking is quite fictitious, this new film is already creating buzz. Money Game is an American drama slated for release in 2023. It describes the brokenness of the current economic system where massive amounts of capital are misallocated. The film emphasizes the importance and need for a monetary system change.
Franklin County’s local director, producer, and writer Julian Lowenthal has chosen Franklin County for the movie’s filming location. The film is based on Chris Galizio and Moses Grader’s white paper called “the $340 Trillion Problem”.
The film, starring Daniel Washington, portrays the current state of the economy, in which companies are no longer growing due to the system’s continuous funding of failing businesses. The crime fiction story is about a young widowed father, James (played by Daniel Washington) who has two daughters. He works as a medical technician during the COVID outbreak but fails to make enough to make ends meet.
The film starts with a conversation between James and one of his close friends, Bryson Hill. James discusses his precarious finances with Bryson, who is a successful business owner and makes millions. Over the course of the discussion, James comes up with a solution and joins college to navigate the broken global economic system. This is where he discovers the “money game,” through an unorthodox professor, Mr. Gardner.
The lead cast members include Daniel Washington, who also happens to be one of the writers of the film, as James; Terrance McFadden Jr. as Bryson; Krishna Mitchell as Imani; Kris Sidberry as Christine; and Stephanie Bisono as Camila. All the scenes were filmed in Turners Falls, Greenfield, and Deerfield, except one shot in Amherst. Venues include Shea Theater, the former Hubie’s Tavern, Greenfield Garden Cinemas, and local parks.
“When the Fed intervened in bond markets (removed risk), they broke the ecosystem of capitalism,” Professor Gardner says to students during a lecture. The intervention of the Fed in the bond market only drives interest rates down and asset prices up. The lecture completely changes James’ perception.
According to Lowenthal, this ultra-low-budget film looks to showcase “a very supportive town for family businesses and community” in Montague, as well as Greenfield and Deerfield. Directing Money Game won’t be too much of a learning curve, Lowenthal said. He added that the cast members — many of whom have worked with him on previous films — have helped to build a team that can effectively execute his creativity on a grand scale.
Since the film uses the Big 5 from the African savannah to represent the ecosystem of capitalism, every cast member in the movie is represented by an animal. The lion represents active managers (the investors trying to set market prices), the gazelle represents passive managers (the investors mirroring stock market indexes and holding them long term), the wildebeest represent Professor Gardner, and the rhino represents gold, a coin in the CNDC commercial, encouraging everyone to “Save the rhinos as they are not dinosaurs yet.”
The long-term damage to capitalism from the current period of slower economic growth and crushing debt is likely to be significant. These effects will be long-lasting, and the stock market will need to clear in order to resume its traditional and powerful role as a productive pricing mechanism for individual stock risk.
The economic system of the world is in a state of flux and a lot of people are looking for answers. A lot of people are looking to movies like Money Game to offer a better understanding of the state of the current global economy. Lowenthal’s work is intended to parallel real-world economic events as they occur.