Who is Watching “Madoff”?

Madoff 3

First of all, the last name is so ironic. Bernie Madoff with a lot of people’s money. Secondly, I just LOVE me some Richard Dreyfuss and he does not disappoint in this role. If he doesn’t win something for this it will be backlash over the #WhiteOut at the Oscars.  I’m calling it now.  And when I try to pull photos for this recap, I am having trouble deciding which pictures are really Madoff and which are Dreyfuss.  The opening is delicious when Madoff says ““Nothing on earth makes people want something more than telling people they can’t have it.” when talking about his “exclusive” Ponzi scam that sucked so many people in. I am much less familiar with this than I am with the OJ trial which I knew inside and out 25 years ago. And because most of are less familiar, this show takes more poetic license (as in the “inspired by true events but we’ve made up some shit” disclaimer) and we are all okay with it.

I have adored Peter Scolari ever since he did Bosom Buddies with Tom Hanks. That was a brilliant sitcom and if it was before your time, you should try and find it on YouTube. I got to meet him once after a Broadway show.  I was starstruck. He made me feel like I was the most important person ever to see him perform. I’m sure I was crying. A lot. I really love this guy.  Maybe that’s why Peter is on the TIPPY TOP of my guy name list. Some names reel me in, some names make me run. Peters, in my experience, are always a good thing. SWIDT? He’s only 60 though and they make him look so old in this movie. Oh! He is the one that died of cancer. :(  Peter plays Bernie’s brother in the movie, Bernie buys his a villa in Provence…. probably to get him out of the eye of the storm.

Blythe Danner is amazing. This is an awesome, cast of acting’s finest.

RHOA Kenya So juicy


This is not a recap. These are things I would tell you if we were watching the show together. So if you didn’t watch, You should turn it on  using your On Demand feature now, if possible. If you aren’t this might make less sense than I usually do. Which granted, is not much sense at all.

I’m not sure if I am falling in love with Bernie or Richard. BTW, Richard is on the REALLY BAD guy name list. Always has been. Peters are GREAT, Dicks are bad. Still following? Good. The young’uns here need to be taking notes. What’s in a name? A LOT in my experience.

OOOH the thing between Mark Madoff and Frank….

Dick Madoff is no fool. This is an incredibly smart man. It took over two decades for him to be caught.

Robert is also high on the bad name list, excluding my numerous family members who bear the name. This is about dating. Don’t date a Bob. That should be self-explanatory.

Sidenote: I need a JDate profile, stat!

Who knew there was even a “Chairman of NASDAQ’?

“After that, you could not stop them from giving them your money if you tried.”

Single people giving BILLIONS to Bernie.

What is this “poor Jewish kid from Queens” stuff. Is there such a thing? I know a really cute “poor Jewish kid from Beverly Hills…” #ShoutOut  to a particular “mayor.”  Though I can’t seem to find her on Twitter. Maybe she bought a  Powerball ticket in Chino Hills?

Who is that who is on to him? Ah, the mathematician at the opposing firm. He exposed him as the fraud.

“Is growth a good thing? Sure, unless it is cancer, and then it can kill you.”

At some point, well before he was arrested, he knew he would go down. He starts distancing people from his business. He starts giving money to people who he liked, family, employees and pushing them away from him.

I’m officially an hour behind. Because I’m really focused on this show, and two hours is a lot to ask of me for that. Considering I’m commenting, I have a dog that needs attention, and other shit that happens. I am back to being mesmerized.

I am having a hard time focusing on NOW and THEN. I am loving this meeting of Eleanor (the secretary) and Ruth (the wife.)  And how Eleanor slips up and calls Mrs Madoff, “Ruth.”  Ruth catches it.

Flash to Dick,  with one of his mistresses.

Meanwhile, Harry Markopolos is onto him! Greek guys are very good with money. Not Greek governments, Greek men.

Why is Peter crying? Roger has leukemia and I have been AFK so long I am not sure who that is.

Oh my! A big time journalist knows Harry has the goods on Bernie! This is all so exciting! IT’s in Barron’s!  But Bernie escapes it because his son spins it and he supposedly has no idea what is really happening.

But Ruth starts drinking a lot.

Frank who was Bernie’s right hand man was arrested in 2009 and died while awaiting trial in 2015 of lung cancer.

Harry continues to expose Bernie. No one is listening to him. Until they don’t. They’re getting audited. FINALLY.

I love how much they have dumbed this down for all of us.  Because frankly, I can’t deal with all of the details.

Like a DTC account. Whatever that is.

And that could be the downfall.

I love that ABC is playing on our “reality” obsession by giving us REAL reality, not of the Bravo kind, in commercials that I stupidly watched through much of this 2 hours.

Poor Mark really wants to be more involved.  And Bernie keeps distancing him. Mark doesn’t get it.

Bernie’s son Andrew has cancer and eventually dies at age 48. Bernie vows to fund every agency and study when he finds out.

Off they are to Bernie’s niece Shauna’s wedding to a lawyer who was investing Bernie.

Where it all went down.


Filed under ABC, Entertainment News

54 responses to “Who is Watching “Madoff”?

  1. Meredith

    I’m watching this. I don’t know how I missed that this show was coming out but I am mesmerized by it. I just happened upon it while switching channels. Such a stellar cast. I hope Richard Dreyfuss wins something. Always has been an amazing actor.

  2. Aerin

    Tonight’s installment was surprisingly engaging. I guess I shouldn’t be that surprised- Richard Dreyfus is no slouch.

  3. Thank you for the reminder! I had this on my list to see and it’s timely because I just saw a documentary about Madoff and his life as it is right now behind bars.

    Looks like it’s going to be good!

    Thanks again TT! You rock the house <3

  4. Matzah60

    I am a big fan of Dreyfus as well. I haven’t seem him in anything in the past ten years. Maybe I should get out more. That being said, I had no idea a movie was made about Madoff. That also is an incredible story. Many had tipped off the SEC about Madoff, but no one ever acted.

    In the end, look what this man did to people’s retirement funds, charities, savings, etc. I believe his whole family was in on it, especially his wife. Even when he was given something like 150 years in prison, she still wanted to go and visit him and stay a part of his life. Even after her son committed suicide and succeeded on his second attempt. The other son also committed suicide, but lived. Later, after writing a book and going on a book tour along with his mother, it was revealed he had cancer and he later died. The two sons said they’d never speak to their mother again if she continued a relationship and communication with Bernie in jail.

    Even in jail this man is running the show. Madoff has been interviewed in jail and I inadvertently got to watch it while changing the channels. He is viewed as famous by his fellow cellmates in a jail that looks more like a hotel.

    Thanks for letting us know about this movie, TT. Your comments are hilarious. Loved reading this!!!

    • Matzah60

      Oh, how I loved Bosom Buddies along with Hanks and Scolari. How great you got to personally meet him, Tamara. I’ve got to go find this on Comcast and watch now. Thanks again!!

  5. tamaratattles

    I’m very selective about husbands, which is why I only have one imaginary a gay one who I’ve never met. (don’t ask, it’s how I roll) and trust me he would be fine with unloading me if there were anyone worthy.

    But if he were to ever be arrested, which he would never be, because he is perfect in every way, I would visit him daily. Even if he was found guilty of roasting small children and eating their skins. I’d do anything to protect him. He could literally be a killer who killed you l in your sleep, and I would do anything for him. #SorryNotSorry.

    I would have made a great Mafia wife and never gone on a TV show. :

    • Lawstangel

      TT- I have a good story for you. Back when Bosom Buddies was still filming I went to a hamburger joint here in L.A. called “Tommies” its a famous place, that is completely crowded 24/7! My friend and I were sitting in the parking lot eating when Tom & Peter pulled up, parked almost next to us and walked right past us to get their food. We just stared, as they were coming back by, they noticed us (we were giving the “OMG is it them stare”) and said hello as they went back to their car with their food. We were so excited! Loved that show….

  6. Lurker

    I recorded and will watch tomorrow.

    Not sure if there are any NY commenters are on here, but I remember when it all went down. A lot of media and New Yorkers stalked Ruth non-stop. They had blogs that would hourly update when she was at the grocery store, now she’s on the train because she can’t pay her driver, her son hates her, etc. Bernie swindled so many people and they took it out on Ruth.

    • Matzah60

      Both of her sons are dead. They both tried to commit suicide and the youngest son succeeded sadly while his young toddler was taking a nap. He left a note. His wife wrote a book which I never read. I know she has changed her last name to avoid any attempts on her life and has fled somewhere obscure where she is raising her children. The older son also tried to commit suicide, but failed. He met a woman who believed him and believed in him. They were engaged. The older son wrote a book and I saw him on TV in an interview where his mother was present, Ruth. He had cancer and never beat it. Bernie chose not to attend either of his son’s funeral, not just because of the likelihood of someone trying to kill him, but because he showed little interest in being there for his sons, even in death. Like OJ, a piece of shit.

      Bernie was brilliant but got greedy. Hello, he created the friggin’ Nasdaq.

  7. Rose

    I am! I love Richard Dreyfus and Peter Scolari and this is a stellar cast. Madoff really worked this scheme to the nth degree. I still feel sorry for all who got swindled by him. Can’t wait for tomorrow.

  8. Sequoia

    In my experience, you can’t go wrong with a Bob.

  9. Sean/Shawns are usually bad in my experience.

  10. The Countess from AHS said she lost all of her money due to Madoff.

  11. Dish Roy

    Thanks for posting about this. I’m absolutely fascinated by it. I agree that the acting is superb – casting was well done for this. You can actually suspend disbelief…Dreyfuss totally embodies Madoff. It’s crazy to me how no one will listen when you have evidence against the rich, powerful – from Madoff to Sandusky, etc. I find that fascinating. I need to read more about how he actually pulled this off. When you have brilliant minds working all around you on Wall Street — what work was his entire company doing if there were no trades and the whole thing was a Ponzi scheme. It would seem obvious, you would think. The fake portal – unbelieveable. Does anyone know how the DTC account works? Is it like with you do a debit card transaction and it goes from the payor bank to the federal reserve or government first to verify funds – then to the payee bank? Can anyone recommend good documentary on Madoff or best books to read?

  12. I LOVED it. I will definitely be watching the whole thing. I’ve always liked Blythe Danner. There is something about her that always makes me wonder why she’s not in more movies. Richard Dreyfuss has been a favorite since, forever. I’m glad you’re watching too TT.

  13. Cat

    Darn. I wanted to watch this. And I started to. Then, I turned it off.

    I was exhausted, and HAD to get some sleep. Even though it was early.

    Maybe I can catch it later. The casting was exceptional.

  14. Loved Bosom Buddies and Peter’s role as Michael on Newhart. I had the pleasure of working for Julia Duffy’s mom in the late 80’s when I was just starting out in real estate.

  15. It was very good. Heather Thompson from RHNYC’s mother in law was a victim too. Rabbi Alexander invested everything with Bernie and his widow was left with nothing. She had to sell the family home and other heirlooms. He ruined so many lives including those of his sons.

    • Let me try posting this again…..It was very good. Heather Thompson from RHNYC’s mother in law was a victim too. Rabbi Alexander Schindler invested everything with Bernie and his widow was left with nothing. She had to sell the family home and other heirlooms. He ruined so many lives including those of his sons.

  16. It was the best network TV movie that I have seen since Roots. Love watching Madoff.

  17. In My Opinion

    Totally with you on this one Tamara, PVR’d both OJ and Madoff, deleted OJ after 12 min as this remake is so old that it’s like you’re watching a repeat, plus all I saw was Ross not Robert :) Whereas Madoff although also covered in the past is a more compelling mini series for me because this situation could happen to anyone, 64 Billion dollars of hardworking people up in smoke.

  18. Spilledperfume

    I’m going to have to look for this on demand. It sounds like they did a good job.

  19. RebeccaBartholow

    Loved this–the casting is perfection. I think Kyra Sedgewick and Kevin Bacon lost a ton of money because of this. Oh–and War and Peace mini-series on Lifetime is pretty spectacular.

  20. Just me

    There’s another Madoff film coming out soon – “The Wizard of Lies”.
    It will be interesting to compare the two.
    There was also a good movie made in 2010 – “Chasing Madoff”.

  21. Dee

    Tamara!! Thanks for the memories, I loved Busom Buddies. I remember everything you mentioned. Coming here after a day from hell is like walking through a light rain, or sitting on the beach listening to the waves. Bless you!

  22. BeetsWhy

    I watched last night and am watching again tonight. I love the casting, it’s very well acted.

    My problem is with the writing. They showed a flashback of Bernie when he was just starting out, he weathered the crash of 1929 by using his own money to cover he investors losses thus beginning the Ponzi scheme…problem is he wasn’t born until 1934. They also can’t go ten minutes without almost outright saying that Ruth and the sons had no idea what he was doing. Ruth? Maybe. But the boys? Seriously doubt it.

    Poor Ruth has to make do today on a measly 2.5 million, how DOES she manage?

    • BeetsWhy

      So fun fact, I went in to IMDB to see who plays the investor from Palm Beach that I could not place (Charles Grodin) and noticed the guy who plays young Bernie is Dreyfuss’ son. Pretty cool!

    • Amy V

      BW…it was the biggest crash SINCE 1929.

    • Margarett

      What a great show! I’ve thoroughly enjoyed every minute. Like everyone, I think the casting was genius. Dreyfus is just great and Danner is no slouch either!

      As for Ruth, I don’t think it matters as much what she received as what she has lost. Which of us would give up a husband and child for a couple million dollars. (I am not counting her loss of a child to cancer only the huge losses for which Bernie is responsible. Nor am I given any value to material losses.)

      Berny’s time in prison has probably been the longest stress free time he’s ever had since his penny stock days. To me it is just a sad story all around. It does sound as if many of Madoff’s victims are getting at least some recompense even if not being “made whole”.

      • tamaratattles

        I agree Margarett, I don’t think Ruth deserves all the hate. She didn’t commit any crimes, she just married a sociopath. I don’t think she should have been turned out to be a bag lady at her age. There had to be some legitimate money earned at some point. They took every stick of everything she owned. She lost her husband and both sons in a very short amount of time. I doubt she is allowed to see her grand children, she’s living all alone cut off from everyone drinking Trader Joes wine. I’d say she is suffering mightily for events she had no control over.

      • Pip

        I didn’t watch the show, but I have read a couple books and I did watch the documentary on ABC after the show. I concur with you both 100%. Ruth Madoff does not deserve any of this. I feel terribly for this poor woman. I do not see guilt on her part. Just tons of loss.

  23. tamaratattles

    I so engrossed in this movie I have forgotten to type anything in the post I opened an hour ago. Let’s just talk here !

  24. Toni Lee Gildea

    Loved the movie!

  25. Powell

    LOL. Made-off. ?

  26. Loved it. I love Richard Dreyfuss so much I felt sorry for Bernie. So unlike me. Mark Madoff’s widow didn’t hold back in her interview in the “Aftermath” segment. I think his wife knew more than we will ever know, but I do believe he deliberately kept his sons out of it. Maybe he didn’t trust them. Or maybe he realized he and Ruth had reared and educated two decent young men.

    • BeetsWhy

      Lizbeth, I am also on the fence with the very finance-educated boys–did they or did they not know how their father managed to get such lucrative returns?

      I feel like the boys may have gotten their just rewards in the end…both dead (cancer and suicide) and Bernie gets to live with their hate and individual deaths in jail.

      Oh, Ruth gets her 2.5 mil to tide her over for the rest of her life, money that we would all kill for at age 70+!

      • I believe Madoff walled off his sons from the fraudulent fund management by setting them up in an independent legitimate funds management/trade/investment business. Of course, the money that Madoff used to set his sons up was generated through his fraud, but I don’t think the sons knew it. Madoff’s clients only thought they were earning great returns on their investments; their statements were fraudulent – the returns were on paper. When clients decided to close their accounts and move the balances or cash out, the money wasn’t there. Madoff could absorb and cover only so much, after that…too bad, sucker.
        Regardless of what Madoff did and who knew what, I would never consider cancer or suicide just rewards. I can’t bear the thoughts of what either does to family and friends or to the victims themselves. But the scenes of poor Ruth having to shop for her own groceries, bereft without household staff, and scuttling around in a black puffy jacket did not elicit sympathy from me. I think we could live quite well on 2.5 million dollars, Beetswhy, for the rest of our lives. (My money’s in real estate and in the bank; I’m so not a financial wizard.)

      • Calipatti

        Lizbeth SC, I agree with your conclusion the Madoff sons knew nothing.
        The Ponzi scam was up and running before the boys joined the company.
        There would be no way Bernie could have brought his sons into that scam.
        A Ponzi scam has a ending time.

        I can’t imagine how that conversation would had went. ” Hey sons, here is how I am stealing from your friends and your family.” No, did not happen.

        The fights Mark had with his dad over what was happening on the 17th floor and his rebuffing of his Mom leads me to believe in the boys innocence.
        I recall the headlines of the boys refusing contact with their mother at the time.
        How horrible for those two men. Reputation was everything to them.

      • Lawstangel

        Seriously???? If they did know about it then it is just fine that they died? You do not get to make that decision and neither does anyone else on this earth. What Madoff did is awful, but we do not kill people for financial crimes in this country.

        I have empathy for the boys (quite different from sympathy). The fact that Mark killed himself shows just how difficult it was to live in the shadow of what their father did. Dreyfus, who I saw interviewed a couple of times leading up to this, said he believes Madoff was a complete sociopath who wove a path of destruction not only through his investors lives, but through his families lives as well. According to his research for the role, the family did not know, the people who were on the 17th floor that did know went to jail and/or died and Madoff cannot stay in jail long enough.

        To this day Ruth is required to account for every single penny she spends with weekly expense reports to the Feds. People strike plea bargains all the time, she was given money to survive on, otherwise we (taxpayers) would be paying for her upkeep. Since none of us knows the exact details of her deal, maybe she was able to show some or all of that money was legit, who knows. Had you seen her? She is not enjoying any part of her life, she is paying a price for her/his sins.

  27. Dee

    Im going to watch! Thanks so much!!

    • Kiyoshigirl

      @Lizbeth SC, if your money’s in real estate and the bank, you ARE a financial wizard. Compared to the 10 year market, you are probably outpacing its returns.

      To date out of the 17 billion stolen almost 11 billion has been returned to victims. Of course the big boy lawyers have eaten up 1 billion in fees….the rich are still taking from the victims. I had wondered where Bernie spent/hid all the billions.Turns out there was a co-conspirator in Palm Beach. When he also died of cancer in the past year or two his wife turned 7 billion over to the trustee. Madoff’s scam fully exposed the ineptitude of the SEC and regulatory agencies. So Chase Manhattan bank has a savings account with up to 23 billion dollars in it at one time and Chase isn’t wondering why? Also shows how the IRS doesn’t do shit to the rich. The interest accumulating on that account was astronomical and you KNOW Madoff wasn’t reporting that on returns. He couldn’t or he would have been exposed. They cross reference my dinky 1099’s for subcontractors, but they let Chase Manhattan and Madoff slide on 23 billion??? Dreyfus knocked it out of the park. I was laughing with tears when he impersonated Madoff’s back problems.

      • Matzah60

        You are so right. So many tip offs to the SEC.. Many suspected or were smart enough to know what Madoff was doing. They turned a blind eye. The rich get richer!

  28. Thank you, Kiyoshigirl. I’m fortunate that I haven’t had to sell anything while the real estate market has been down. I agree: how is it I’ve been audited twice and billionaires and their banks can advance massive frauds for decades before regulatory agencies/the IRS/government oversight notice? Financial Fuckery.

  29. T

    This was such a great film! Loved it.
    Blythe Danner is an incredible actress. I’d really like to see more of her acting.

  30. crampina

    Haven’t watched this show but I’m going to go to On Demand and catch it after reading Tamara’s recap. Now I’m interested. Also, before reading this I didn’t know about it. I worked for a bank that is now Chase Bank in the legal dept. for two and a half years . Yeah, they are evil. We had a file on Enron for two years before it broke in the papers. They knew. They just protected themselves. Their money, their self interest. Basically they would run over your grandmother who is dying with cancer if it meant a $20, 000 loss for them. Or drag her into a lawsuit in which she was only a third party and make the last year of her life miserable.

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