In Review

WeCrashed review: glossy new drama about a flawed Silicon Valley unicorn

Jared Leto and Anne Hathaway star in this eight-part series on Apple TV+

Apple TV+’s new eight-part series charts the rise and “partial fall” of WeWork, the office space company that was once valued at $47bn, said Nick Hilton in The Independent. As the title rather gives away, the company came crashing down – though it still exists, but without its founder and original CEO, the charismatic Israeli ex-naval officer Adam Neumann. Neumann is played here with “mesmeric zealotry” by Jared Leto, while Anne Hathaway stars as his wife Rebekah, who seems to have matched him “pound-for-pound” in the ego stakes. For all the talk of rental leases and IPOs, the Neumanns’ “oddly sympathetic love story” is the focus of the drama – which is just as well, as WeWork’s story isn’t as exciting as, say, that of Facebook or Theranos. 

Like “every other Apple show”, this drama is slick, finely crafted and cool, said Camilla Long in The Sunday Times. “Overhauling office space” was never going to make scintillating TV; that WeCrashed is quite compelling is largely down to Leto’s “exciting and unpredictable” performance. They’ve done something weird to his face, so he looks as though he is wearing a death mask; and he’s assumed a strange “high-pitched” accent, which lends the character a “fabulously loopy edge”. Much as I enjoyed this tale of “rags to riches to (relative) rags”, said Lucy Mangan in The Guardian, it is all rather shallow. It panders to the viewers’ taste for schadenfreude, but it would have been more interesting if it had taken a proper look at how WeWork became so big. 

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