Those going to see this week’s new release ‘Equity’ will be relieved to know that it’s not about the actors union with a bunch of luvvies bitching about another actor who got cast in a role that they auditioned for but is about an investment banker threatened by a financial scandal and unwittingly embroiled in a corrupt deal – which doesn’t make it sound much better. But wait because the twist here is that the normally perceived male dominated world of financial markets is here led by a nearly all female cast. With women battling both a glass ceiling as well as a recent survey showing that women earn less this attempts to redress the balance with what is, in essence, a Wall Street for Women. Anna Gunn, an actress normally confined to TV series, plays Naomi Bishop looking every inch the hard nosed, battle hardened investment banker and still smarting from a well publicised fall out from a failed deal she looks to retrieve her reputation by brokering the market valuation of an IT security company run by Ed (Samuel Roukin) a reptilian eyeballed, giraffe necked, lion mane who takes a shine to her assistant Erin (Sarah Megan Thomas whose story the script is based on). And it’s the newly pregnant Erin who has been overlooked for both promotion and pay rise and who sets about her bosses downfall. For a film that’s about female empowerment it seems from this that sisters are absolutely doing it only for themselves and absolutely no one else regardless of gender. Thrown into the all the two faced-ness is Naomi’s old friend, Samantha, who renew each other’s acquaintance but it’s a renewed friendship which has been manufactured purely because Samantha is now a financial investigator looking into irregularities in the broker company. And this being a ‘woman’s piece’ has made her character gay for no other reason than to presumably keep the all female theme running.
Looking like Amy Schumer’s older humourless sister Anna Gunn is well cast and James Purefoy oozes his usual greasy charm as her self-centred boyfriend. Sarah Megan Thomas as the undervalued assistant who grabs her moment lends great support although despite her character being pregnant still totters around in a tight dress until she suddenly spouts a baby belly.
With a script written by a woman (Amy Fox) and a nearly all female cast who in turn are directed by a woman (Meera Menon) it wears its credentials on its sleeves despite painting most of the cast as being utterly duplicitous and the far from revelatory fact that women are every bit as ambitious as their male counterparts.
Here’s the trailer: