Marla Gottschalk on “The Top Workplace Movies of All Time: Part 2”

WorkingHere is a brief excerpt from a terrific article by Marla Gottschalk for LinkedIn during which she briefly discusses another ten top workplace movies: Working Girl (1988), Broadcast News (1987), Clerks (1994), Wall Street (1987), Glengarry Glen Ross (1992), Network (1976), The Apartment (1960), The Devil Wears Prada (2006), Norma Rae (1979), Horrible Bosses (2011), and Mr. Mom (1983).

Here are her comments on the first three of the ten, accompanied by a brief film clip. To read the entire article and watch all of the film clips, please click here.

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We all love a great movie set in the workplace — and there are so many worthy titles. (I’ll admit freely, that I’m a bit obsessed with films that depict work life.) After speaking with fellow Influencer Dave Kerpen, we knew that we wanted to compile and share a list of some of the best workplace-inspired movies. (Hope you caught Dave’s post “The Top 10 Workplace Movies of All Time.”) In Part 1, Dave has included such favorites as Office Space, 9 to 5 and You’ve Got Mail. We continue here with more great flicks.

Movies are the perfect vehicle to reflect all of the passion (and in some instances, the distaste) that we have for our work lives. It’s interesting to note how workplaces have subtly changed in film over the years. Yet, certain themes such as power, leadership and camaraderie remain central. Classics such as Wall Street and Broadcast News, tackle these iconic themes masterfully. However, some of the more recent films, such as The Devil Wears Prada and Up in the Air (covered by Dave) are also great additions — skillfully representing current Zeitgeist and the evolving nature of workplaces quite well.

Ultimately all of these films are stellar in their own right, and a joy to watch.

So, here are 10 more great titles — along with the reappearance of my personal all-time favorite for good measure. Both comedies and dramas are represented, and the movies are listed in no particular order.

Are any of these titles on your “favorites” list?

Working Girl (1988). This movie has it all — big business, high stakes, romance and the added interest of a truly awful boss. But, rest assured there is one satisfying scene, where this obnoxious (and might I add, despicable) boss is put in her place. She is shut down so succinctly and so completely by the protagonist (Melanie Griffith as Tess McGill) that you’ll find yourself shouting, “Yes!” (See Siskel & Ebert’s 1988 review here.)

Look for this quote: “Trask, Radio….Trask, Radio.”

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Broadcast News (1987). The pressures of a Washington, DC newsroom, set the scene to explore one of the longest-standing workplace questions: Does image trump hard work and integrity? Holly Hunter gives a remarkable multi-faceted performance as the talented (and somewhat neurotic) producer, Jane Craig, who faces her deepest fears about work and her own character. Don’t miss Albert Brook’s wonderful supporting performance — as her loyal (and smitten) colleague Aaron Altman, who can’t seem to catch a break.

Memorable quote: “This is more than Nixon ever sweated.”

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Clerks (1994). Shot in black & white on a shoestring budget of $27,000 — Clerks offers a “slice of life” view of two young men manning the video and convenience store counters of middle America. As communicated quite well by Roger Ebert, “The movie has the attitude of a gas station attendant who tells you to check your own oil.” I’ll have to admit, there are more than a few moments that are cringe-worthy.

Memorable quote: “I’m not even supposes to be here today!”

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To read the complete article and watch the film clips, please click here.

Dr. Marla Gottschalk is an Industrial/Organizational Psychologist and consultant who specializes in workplace success strategies and organizational change. She helps teams and organizations develop intelligently—through customized diagnostics and a deep appreciation of the importance of work in our lives. You can find more of her posts at The Office Blend. To read all of her posts, please click here.

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