Vast Wealth

Institute History

  • 1991 January Screenwriters Lab


Jim Alexander—single, in his early thirties—lives without much income but all the same happily as an underachiever. His younger brother, Sandy, however, is just the opposite. Sandy has built one of America’s preeminent personal motivation empires—with nationwide TV spots, a mansion in L.A., a picture-perfect wife and daughter. The two brothers have grown apart, but at the film’s beginning, Sandy has decided to join their destinies once more, no matter what Jim thinks. In one weekend, Sandy uses his personal fortune to eliminate Jim’s job, home and girlfriend—then offers him a high-paying job in the personal motivation empire, which is called VAST WEALTH. For a complex set of reasons (including an essentially philosophical view of the world, a desire for revenge and lack of funds), Jim chooses to hire on. What follows are a series of further complications, involving growing relationships between Jim and Monica (Sandy’s wife) and between Jim and Diana, Sandy’s chief associate in VAST WEALTH. The questionable joys and rather significant drawbacks of being very rich and powerful indeed are examined in what is essentially a cinematic comedy of manners.


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