Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Queen of Versailles

So I just watched this documentary yesterday and it was honestly so good and so sad. I heard about this movie a couple months ago and it's been receiving amazing reviews. It follows one of America's richest families, the Siegels, and how they basically lost everything after the financial crisis of 2008. They started building the largest house in America (90,000 square feet) and took out a mortgage against it (it was all paid in cash) to finance their business, and the house is now in foreclosure.

One of the most depressing things about this movie is that it shows the process of how Westgate (David Siegel's timeshare business) sell these timeshares to people on vacations. They take a minimum downpayment when these people have hardly any money to their name. The goal of their business is to just sell as much as possible through offering 80% discounts on these properties. It was actually so sad to watch the mindset behind the employees at Westgate, and they're fed the idea that they're "saving lives" by letting people take vacations. And then everyone was laid off because the business collapsed.

Also as if this wasn't already a widely accepted fact, this movie really shows that money doesn't buy happiness. This family is so dysfunctional even before they lost all their money ... I would not wish for their lives in my wildest dreams. No one in this family seems happy. So sad.

Here's the trailer and I seriously recommend it, it's a great look into the mindset of America before the crisis:

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