Since there was a lag before this review would run, I focused on the role of the ratings agencies. An excerpt:
The Big Short leads viewers to believe that shortsighted greed is the ultimate explanation for why the ratings agencies gave their blessing to dangerous products. In one scene, a woman working for a major agency says that if her company doesn’t grant a triple-A rating, the Wall Street bank (which is their customer) will simply take the financial product in question down the street to a competitor to get a high rating from them.
This can’t be the full story. After all, why doesn’t every financial product get a triple-A rating? Why doesn’t every company bring its corporate bonds to, say, Moody’s, and demand a triple-A rating or else they’ll walk down the street to Fitch?