Double Dose of 2008 Financial Crisis

Documentary: The Flaw (2011).  This documentary by David Sington takes a look at the recession and financial collapse of 2008, offering opinions of the causes through interviews with noted homeowners, economists, financial reporters, and Wall Street bankers.  While some critics believe it does not give a fair accounting of all the causes and the forces behind those causes – I will let you be the judge of that – it serves as another look at the recent financial crisis and serves as one more tool that SavvyInvestors can use to plot their own course. The Flaw

Available for streaming on Netflix, Hulu, Hulu Plus, iTunes, Vudu, Amazon, and YouTube.

Documentary: Inside Job (2010).  Narrated by Matt Damon, this 2010 Academy Award winner for Best Documentary Feature looks at the deep-rooted corruption that left millions of middle-class Americans jobless and homeless while major corporations got bailed out while paying millions in bonuses.  Split into five parts (how we got here, the bubble, the crisis, accountability, and where we are now), director Charles Ferguson speaks at length with journalists, politicians, and financial insiders in order to offer a picture of the economic crisis that hit America starting in 2008.

Inside Job

Available for streaming on iTunes, Vudu, Amazon, and YouTube.

Blogger-in-Chief here at RetirementSavvy and author of Sin City Greed, Cream City Hustle and RENDEZVOUS WITH RETIREMENT: A Guide to Getting Fiscally Fit.


  1. Watching “Inside Job” was eye-opening. This was an example of greed, corruption, selfishness & lack of integrity all rolled into one.
    There was a time when I would not believe our government capable of such deceitful actions. That time is long gone.
    It is not merely coincidence that individuals work at passing laws and then make loads of money working for one of the companies said law benefited. It is an abuse of power to act in such a way that benefits ones pocket book at the detriment of the public which elected you.

    • You are right. It really is an eye opener when you get a better understanding at the greed, and incompetence, that played a part in the crisis. Keep your eye out for the new SavvyRecommendations on Friday. The subjects of money and greed are explored again in two fictional movies.

      • By the end of Inside Job I was LIVID! A corporate executive can break the law, then the committee responsible for being sure he doesn’t break the law gives him a one year period to “address the problem” & coincidentally the law is changed- within that year- which then makes what he did completely legal. Power has gone to these people’s heads. More than ever I agree with Warren Buffet who stated that congressmen should serve only two years then go back to being a regular citizen without all the perks they enjoy now. I bet they’d be a lot more responsible if they had to deal with the consequences of the laws they passed, like us ordinary folks do.

  2. Thanks – not seen either, but both sound right up my street. Will watch them soon and let you know what I think.

    • Great. I think you will find that they both, particularly taken together, provide context to the who, what, why, and how to the 2008 financial crisis. Looking forward to your feedback.

  3. I definitely need to check out these documentaries, thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks for stopping by, DC. I think you will find that both documentaries are interesting as they give some good insight into the who, what, and why of the crisis. I am looking forward to getting your feedback on both.

  4. Thanks for the recommendations, SavvyJames. The Inside Job is a film worth watching. The Flaw is one that I have only just heard about from you and it sounds very interesting. I have just added a new movie to my “Movies I want To See” list.

    Cheers, Froogalist

    • Both are pretty good movies and they make an interesting pairing. At the risk of going to the well too often with recommendations related to the 2008 financial crisis, I am strongly considering a movie – fictional – that is about the crisis as one of next week’s recommendations. It is actually one of my favorite movies from the last year or so and I’m a little surprised I’m finally getting around to recommending it. Tune in next Friday to check it out. Always good to have you visit, Froogalist.

  5. I have seen the documentary “Inside Job” that was given to me by one of my clients. It’s quite sad what happened to the country because of the greed of major corporations. We are still recovering and it will definitely take a while!

    • It is absolutely true that greed was a significant factor in the 2008 crisis. Unfortunately, a lot middle-class Americans suffered the most – and as you note – are still suffering as the recovery is still ongoing. This latest crisis should serve as a lesson for Savvy individuals. There has to be a recognition that while some things are out of your control, numerous things are (e.g. establishing an emergency fund, being more frugal, contributing to defined contribution plans, attaining education in multiple disciplines, and developing multiple streams of income, etc.) and now is the time to act, not as the crisis is occurring. Rest assured, another crisis is inevitable, the only real question is, “will individuals do what is necessary to prepare themselves?” Thanks for dropping in, Elena. I hope to see you here on a regular basis.

  6. Thanks for sharing, I will check it out, Have a great weekend !

    • Will do and thanks, Rita. You do the same and enjoy this long Labor Day weekend!

  7. I just added The Flaw to my Netflix queue. Thanks for sharing.

    • Taz, I believe you will enjoy it. In fact, both movies provide a lot of food for thought with regards to the 2008 financial crisis. Follow up once you have viewed it and let me know what you think.

      • I’ll definitely follow up with ya.

      • Well SavvyJames, you said you believed I’d enjoy “The Flaw”….enjoy is not the word I’d use. lol. This is another documentary that had my mouth open for almost an hour straight. The lengths that certain folks were willing to go to in order to make money is nothing less than insane.

        There is actually a handbook in which it is written that a deed restrictions which keep people of certain races out of certain neighborhoods is partly what makes a loan “a good loan”. Seriously? I could write about 15 blogs on this documentary alone. The titles would include, “How Bankers Keep Us Enslaved”, “America: No longer the Land of Equality”, “Conspiracy Theories- Non Longer Just Theory”, etc.

        All I can say is what I’ve been saying for a while now: It is ultimately important for us to be financially literate in order to achieve financial freedom in an effort to insulate ourselves from the actions of the greedy few at the top!”

        And I mean it now after watching both “The Flaw” and “Inside Job.”


        • My guess is that you will REALLY enjoy a Bill Moyers/PBS FRONTLINE documentary that the wife and I watched last night. It is actually four parts; whereby two families are profiled over 23 years, 1990 – 2013 in the four segments: Minimum Wages-The New Economy (1990), Living on the Edge (1995), Surviving the Good Times (2000), and Two American families (2013). It will likely be a SavvyRecommendation in the near future. Unfortunately, they are only available online as far as I can tell. I used my iPad/Apple TV/AirPlay to stream to my TV for a more enjoyable experience.

          • I’ll definitely check it out SavvyJames

            • You won’t be disappointed. It really provides insight into how the move from an industrial to information (computer) economy and globalization has impacted some American families trying to keep their heads above water.

            • I look forward to it SavvyJames. I was actually discussing the switch to the Information Age and it’s consequences at my Toastmasters meeting a few weeks ago. It should be interesting.

            • I did a paper a few years ago, while pursuing my MBA, in which I discussed the transition through the last three major ages: agrarian, industrial, and information. It is an interesting topic, particularly with regards to how some people/groups can get caught on the wrong side of the transition.

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