Drama Movie

The Queen of Versailles The American Dream backlash is impossible to defend.

This award-winning documentary, released in 2012 , chronicles the lives of the mega-rich Siegel family.The main characters are the man, David A. Siegel, and the woman, Jaqueline Siegel, with their children, maids, family and friends as “green leaves” in the background.Both the hero and the heroine have very ordinary origins. The hero David’s fortune is a typical American dream. Business opportunities are sent to the door, the hero has the courage and vision and drive, coupled with a determined effort to struggle, so that David quickly among the influential rich group . Of course, the most crucial thing is always his own efforts, from his own interviews and descriptions, his hard work is amazing, such as his own words “if it takes 150 years to get the company back to the top, I will fight until 150 years old”. His subsequent wife Jackie  also said “He owns it. The business concept is “time-share resorts”, where traditional hotels are upgraded to resorts with prepaid or installment payments, enabling ordinary people to enjoy wealthy family vacations with a few days of credit per year. This is in line with the new concept of credit card, installment payment, mortgage for house/car purchase, which is called “overspending” . David liked the concept so much that he declined the offer and found his own investment, which coincided with the speculative phase of real estate in the U.S., so it’s not surprising that he made a fortune.

David has had a special fondness for the Miss America pageant since he was a child, and he just happened to meet Jackie when he was divorced… The age difference between the two is 30 years… But also married. (To my subjective judgment Jackie is a very typical gold digger, Gold digger).

If you say the documentary is just showing off (show off) the lavish life of the rich. The construction of the largest freestanding home ever built in the United States began in 1990 and is worth US$100 million after completion. When the director asked the hero why he wanted to build this Versailles-style oversized house, he simply said, “Because I can (have the strength),” which is at the peak of his career, his main business (resort) to his company to bring annual sales of USD $ 1 billion, so, borrowed from the bank to build the There was nothing obviously wrong with borrowing money from the bank to build this ultra-luxurious home not far from Disneyland. However, the fate of the United States has always been in the hands of the bankers, with a mini-crash on Wall Street about every 10 years and a Great Depression every few decades. Catastrophes always happen in a flash, and when a financial crisis occurs, even a smart businessman like David could not have predicted the final outcome. From the beginning to the end of the interview, you can see David’s shrewdness from the talk, and he always has a very clear understanding of all things, including the relationship with his current wife (interested parties can pay special attention to the male lead at various stages of the interview, several comments on the wife / husband relationship). But from the initial still optimistic open high price of selling houses, to the company’s big layoffs, and even consider cutting their own family expenses including electricity, children from private schools to public schools, etc., it is clear that the man is also gradually aware of the seriousness of the problem. This time, the U.S. subprime crisis, like a bubble blowing bigger and bigger, the speed of bursting is also devastating. The destructive power is enough to make the entire United States die, the global economy backwards for decades. If the U.S. government had not forcibly intervened and had to take extreme measures (crazy money printing, direct injection into private enterprises/private banks, and partial state control) to preserve the poor credible economy, the consequences would have been a long period of future weakness of the dollar (still not ruling out the possibility of the dollar turning into scrap paper). It’s a pity that the Chinese government didn’t take advantage of the situation to fall on its sword. As long as China sells U.S. debt on the international market, countries will also follow the crowd, the actual value of the dollar can instantly become scrap paper, the national debt can not be repaid, the credibility of the U.S. country will instantly be swept away, the solution can only be a world-class war, of course, the U.S. civil war split into numerous small countries, the possibility of debt cancellation is not small, recently after Obama’s re-election, Texas began to have a number of people referendum, seeking independence.

The most remarkable thing about the documentary is that the Siegel family was at the peak of its glory when it happened to meet the financial crisis, and the whole process of the family’s life became difficult, and it is true that the director of the film did not anticipate when he first interviewed David. The coincidence of God has made this wonderful documentary.

When the crisis first began, David already knew that once the bank was frozen, his business would be ruined. Four months after the completion of the PH Tower WestGate in Las Vegas, he was sued by the construction company because he could not pay the balance of the project, and he had to lay off employees to cut expenses and sell his own “Versailles Palace”, which was not yet completed, to meet the bank’s demands. When the bank asks David to sell the WestGate, which he is in debt to, to ensure that he can resume his luxurious life, David refuses with the words “Over my dead body”. Father and son tried to hold on to the last bastion of their business at all costs, even if it offended family, friends and relatives (aside: in November 2011, Resort Finance America LLC financed WestGate, the details of the contract are unknown, but it seems that David was satisfied that the sovereign was held). The family’s original 19 maids and nannies have been reduced to four, even saving on the family’s electricity bill. Of course, the mistress “Versailles” Queen is not very concerned, the main man David also knows, she likes to buy several sets of things, a group of dogs, raising children is also a group. Even in the most difficult period of the family economy, she did not know thrifty to buy toys for their children, still to do cosmetic surgery (Botox injection), even if the reduction of some of the expenses, but another part of the increased consumption. At the end of the interview, David also analyzed the reasons for getting into financial trouble, he said everyone was at fault, it was a whirlpool, he was swept in together, if he could do it all over again, he would slow down the development and use the money he earned to develop, instead of borrowing money from the bank to expand wildly. He also advised everyone to spend the same amount of money they earned instead of “overspending”. It can be said that David’s success is indeed the standard of the American dream, opportunity + hard work. But in the American economy, with the leverage of finance, success and failure are magnified exponentially. Jackie also believes that bankers are like vultures, hovering in the air, they don’t want to help you, but eat your flesh when you’re weak (I think that’s the message from David). David’s message). The heroine’s old friend got $5,000 from Jackie, but still couldn’t save her house from being foreclosed by the bank, and she actually only borrowed a small amount from the bank ($1700, if I heard correctly).

The main character, David, said, “I’m a victim of career success (or failure), and my career and I are one thing. He treats his family with relative indifference, but also financially supports his children appropriately, living with his ex-wife for seven years before divorcing, paying for all their education and keeping them decently dressed despite not paying for them. His own son Richard became a senior executive at WestGate, but also maintained only an employer-employee-like relationship with David, not being close in private, and only discussing business when they were together. David Sr. treats his children well, attending his son’s school events and having dinner with his family even when he is busy.

The relationship between husband and wife is a subplot of the documentary.

He treats his wife Jackie as his children equally (or even worse) and even jokingly says that when Jackie reaches 40, he will replace her with 2 20 year old girls. Obviously this family’s spousal relationship is not normal, David faced the camera and did not shy away from saying so. And for Jackie, she needs to make sure her marriage with David doesn’t break up. So she kissed David several times in front of the camera, trying to show a seemingly harmonious marriage. From the beginning David Sr. said of his wife, “She has a forgiving heart, is a good mother, a good person ….” . In the middle, when the interviewer asks David, “Does he get strength (help) from the marriage?” David clearly said “no,” and after a half second of contemplation, confirmed “no.” And when financial difficulties are at their worst, David tries everything to try to finance his career, and at this time also dislikes anything at home, threatening to black out the home and even threatening to suspend payment of his wife Jackie’s credit card spending (and the heroine is very clever to use the children to detour, this hand is very powerful). Near the end of the film summary, Jackie said she used to talk to her husband for more than an hour a day before, but never mention the economic problems, and now there is no communication, she does not know the status of life at home, only to watch the documentary perhaps to know the specifics of the home. And David is always the only master of the home, as the nanny said, any receipts bills, David is very clear, he gave the maid nanny’s salary is not very high, the driver is also calculated by the number of times the salary. Keep an eye on his study/office room, where he is personally in charge of all kinds of bill texts.

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