Who would think a documentary about the collapse of a mammoth corporation could play out like a drama with the emotional power of Greek tragedy? But that is the impact of enroll:the smartest guys in the room, the inside story of one of history greatest business scandals, in which top executives of america,s seventh largest company walked away with over one billion dollars while investors and employees lost everything.
Based on the best selling book the smartest guys in the room by fortune reporters Bethany McLean and peter Elkind, and featuring insider accounts and incendiary corporate audio and videotapes, the tale of greed, hubris and betrayal reveals the outrageous personal excesses of the enron hierarchy and the moral vacuum that led CEO Ken lay - along eith other players including accounting firm Arthur anersden, chief operating officer Jeffrey skilling and chief financial officer Andy fastow - to manipulate securities trading, bluff the balance sheets and deceive investors. The film comes to a harrowing climax as audiences hear enron traders own voices as they wring hundreds of mill in of dollars in profits out the the California energy crisis. As a result, we come to understand how the avarice of enron traders and their bosses had a shocking and profound domino effect that may shape the face of our economy for years to come.
The story begins in 1985, with the merger of Houston natural gas and Omaha. Nebraska natural gas company, inter north, to form the natural gas pipeline company called enron. By2000, the company has grown unto the largest natural gas merchant in north America,eventually branching out into trader other commodities, such as water, coal and steel. As the pioneer behind this strategy to switch from a pipeline company to trading, Jeff skilling i named CEO, and the company stock skyrockets.
Meanswhile skilling " black fox" accounting results in declared earning of 53million dollars for a collapsing deal that doesn't profit a cent. And enron's west coast power desk has it's most profitable month ever, as california citizen become casualties of enron scheme to artificially increaser demand for electricity, resulting in rolling blackouts and two deaths. When enron sleight of hand accounting and unethical trading eventually meet the realities of balance sheets that don't balance and products that don't exist, unwitting employees who have anchored their financial futures to the enron ship watch in horror as water rushes in overhead. With lifeboats gone, stocks and retirement accounts worth nothing, enron employee max exerts recalls, " it was kind of like being on the Lusitania. The torpedo had hit with 20minutes to get out"
A fascinating exploration of corporate culture and epic misdeeds, enron: the smartest guy in the room takes viewers from the heyday of soaring profits through the prolonged fallout, including the collapses of Arthur Andersen, the 2006 convictions of lay, skilling and fastow, followed by lay's death two months later, which vacated his conviction.