Trading Places

Tonight, after completing our season 1 Law & Order: SVU marathon, Daniel and I watched 1983’s Trading Places, a comedy starring Dan Aykroyd and Eddie Murphy.  Two brothers named Duke (who happen to be millionaires and deal in the stock market) make a bet regarding nature versus nurture.  Dan Aykroyd plays a wealthy commodities broker named Louis Winthorpe III who is very well-educated and engaged to be married.  Eddie Murphy plays a poor street hustler named Billy Ray Valentine.  After Valentine is arrested for an attempted robbery of Winthorpe’s briefcase, the Duke brothers decide that these two men will switch lives and see what happens.  They call it a “science experiment”; they are eager to discover if Winthorpe will resort to lying and stealing in order to survive, or if he will still come out on top because of his upbringing and Ivy League training.  They also want to see if Valentine can give up his life of stealing and lying and take over Winthorpe’s job, despite a poor upbringing and a lack of higher education.  So the brothers have money and drugs planted on Winthorpe right after they have Valentine bailed out of jail and give him Winthorpe’s former position at their company.  A man hired by the Dukes also pays a prostitute (Jamie Lee Curtis) to approach Winthorpe immediately after his fiancé bails him out of jail and offer him sex for drugs.  Naturally, the fiancé calls off the engagement, and leaves Winthorpe on the street with no money.

Neither of these men know that they are pawns in this experiment, until Valentine overhears a conversation between the two brothers in the bathroom.  He informs Winthorpe, and they devise a plan that will make themselves very rich while putting the Duke brothers in the poor house.  The Duke brothers are expecting to get a crop report that will determine how certain commodities should be traded in the stock market.  They have bribed a man to give them the crop report two days before the government announces it to the rest of the country.  Winthorpe and Valentine devise a plan to steal these reports and replace them with false papers, thereby giving the Duke brothers incorrect information regarding the crops.  This causes the Duke brothers to buy when they should be selling, causing them to lose their entire fortune while Winthorpe and Valentine become rich.

It’s a very funny movie with Dan Aykroyd and Eddie Murphy in their prime.  Also, there are a lot of boobs so if that’s what you like, by all means, go watch this movie.

Edit:  I know this question is often asked, but if you could trade places with anyone, would you?  And who would it be?

Daniel pretends to switch places with a spy, and stalks me in his parents' kitchen.

I found these pictures on my camera one day while we were at the beach.  Interesting.

The whole scheme may have been Nicole's idea.


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