Career and Finance Technology Wellness

32 Movies Every Entrepreneur Must Watch

Written by Aaron
Sometimes the best way to capture reality to motivate you in the field of entrepreneurship, finance, marketing, negotiation, ethics, strategy, etc. is through fiction.You are going to need daily motivation to help you overcome all of the obstacles you will face especially in this line of work. Motivational movies are great ways into which you can channel your mindset into becoming a successful entrepreneur.Movies have been, and still are, a source of inspiration for many. Movies have the power to challenge our limits, push our understandings, and invoke powerful emotions.Movies can help you become a better entrepreneur!Wherever you are in your business venture, you can glean some insight from these 30 provocative and wildly entertaining films. 
Note: These movies are not arranged in any particular order.
 

1.The Godfather (1972) 

 

The Godfather is another one of IMDB’s all-time top 10 movies, and it’s also one of the most critically acclaimed films of all time.

When the aging head of a famous crime family decides to transfer his position to one of his subalterns, a series of unfortunate events start happening to the family, and a war begins between all the well-known families leading to impertinence, expatriation, murder and revenge, and ends with the favorable successor being finally chosen. The father and son who run the operation show what it takes to get to the top and stay there.

If  you want to stay on top, this will be a great watch for you to learn how. “Don’t do anything illegal, just find some inspiration in these shrewd business operators.”

Subject: Strategy

 

2. How To Get Ahead In Advertising.

advertising

Even if you’re not looking for advertising advice, How to Get Ahead in Advertising will teach you a thing or two about creative problem solving.

Dennis Dimbleby Bagley is a brilliant young advertising executive who can’t come up with a slogan to sell a revolutionary new pimple cream. His worries affected  all those around him including his wife, his friends, his boss, and also his own body – graphically demonstrated when he grows a large stress-related boil on his shoulder. But when the boil grows eyes and a mouth and starts talking, Bagley really begins to think he’s lost his mind. Whats happening?

This movie has redeemed itself many years back when it was  a flop and is now touted as a brilliantly entertaining irony of the advertising industry. It will make you think different about business in the commercial world.

Subject: Sales And Marketing

3. Catch Me If You Can.

catch me if you can

 High schooler Frank Abagnale Jr. idolizes his father, who’s in trouble with the IRS. When his parents separate, Frank runs away to Manhattan with $25 in his checking account, when his parent separated, vowing to mend  dad’s mistakes and losses and get his parents back together. Just a few years later, the FBI tracks him down in France; he’s extradited, tried, and jailed for passing more than $4,000,000 in bad checks. Along the way, he’s posed as a Pan American World Airways pilot, a Georgia doctor, and a Louisiana parish prosecutor. His primary crime was check fraud. And, from nearly the beginning of this life of crime, he’s been pursued by a tenacious FBI agent, Carl Hanratty. It touches upon important themes like creative problem solving, turning something good out of a bad situation, entrepreneurial funding sources, perseverance, entrepreneurship skills, creativity and innovation, , business vision, and personal sales techniques.

Subject: Entrepreneurship.

4. The Social Network (2010)

social network

 

This is a good movie on learning how to take your dreams and turn them into reality.

On a fall night in 2003, Harvard undergrad and computer programming genius Mark Zuckerberg sits down at his computer and heatedly begins working on a new idea. In a fury of blogging and programming, what begins in his dorm room soon becomes a global social network and a revolution in communication. In six years and a 500 million friends later, Mark Zuckerberg became the youngest billionaire in history… but for this entrepreneur, success leads to both personal and legal complications.

It teaches us a lot on how to scale a company from a dorm room to the the most successful social media platform  the world has ever seen! 

Subject: Entrepreneurship

 

5. Startup.com.

This movie covers topics including; finance for entrepreneurs, capital raising, growth management, entrepreneurship skills, team building and management skills.

Startup.com is a documentary film that with the necessary ingredients to learn a few great lessons about the internet and also examines the rise and fall of the real-life startup GovWorks that raised $60 million from KKR, Hearst Interactive Media,Sapient and the New York Investment Fund. The process of building the business focuses on obtaining venture capital based solely on the idea, with the actual mechanics of the website seemingly almost an afterthought, or at least one left primarily to their hired help.It’s good viewing to better understand the ups and downs of the dotcom period and serves as a cautionary tale on how friendships can easily be threatened by business partnerships.

Subject:Entrepreneurship.

 

6. Rogue Trader

rogue trader

Derivatives, corporate valuation, financial reporting, capital markets, emerging markets and business ethics are some topics covered by this movie.

Nick Leeson (ambitious and wild eye) is determined to rise in the world and be more than a simple bank clerk. When his employers, Barings Bank, offer him the opportunity to go to Jakarta to sort out a problem that nobody else wants, he seizes the opportunity with both hands. In Jakarta he meets and marries Lisa and together they go to Singapore when the bank offers him the job of setting up their future options trading operation. To save money the bank allows Nick to operate both the floor trading and the back office facilities and force him to employ cheap, unskilled staff.

His first year of trading is a big success and he makes large profits for the bank even though he has illegally broken trading rules and secretly covered up losses. Given more freedom, even more money and continuing unchecked, Nick starts to make losses and again attempts to trade out of them but this time he comes unstuck as his illegal trading generates even bigger losses. After the death of his unborn child …

Subject: Finance

 

7. The Devil Wears Prada.

 

the devil wears prada

In New York, the simple and naive just-graduated in journalism Andrea Sachs is hired to work as the second assistant of the powerful and sophisticated Miranda Priestly, the ruthless and merciless executive of the Runway fashion magazine. Andrea dreams to become a journalist and faces the opportunity as a temporary professional challenge. The first assistant Emily advises Andrea about the behavior and preferences of their cruel boss, and the stylist Nigel helps Andrea to dress more adequately for the environment. Andrea changes her attitude and behavior, affecting her private life and the relationship with her boyfriend Nate, her family and friends. In the end, Andrea learns that life is made of choices.

This movie will motivate you to take the plunge and pursue your dream job, teach you to work your way up the cooperate ladder, introduce you to fashion, remind you how hard work pays eventually and how to navigate your boat in an unfavorable wind to to reach your destination  successfully.

Subject: Sales And Marketing

 

 

8. Twelve Angry Men

 

The defense and the prosecution have rested and the jury is filing into the jury room to decide if a young man is guilty or innocent of murdering his father. What begins as an open-and-shut case of murder soon becomes a detective story that presents a succession of clues creating doubt, and a mini-drama of each of the jurors’ prejudices and preconceptions about the trial, the accused, and each other. Based on the play, all of the action takes place on the stage of the jury room.

This is a must watch, and will leave you thinking about the way you make important decisions, negotiations techniques, persuasion methods, conflict resolution and consensus building

Subject: Negotiation

 

9. The Merchant of Venice.

Venice, 1596. Melancholy Antonio loves the youthful Bassanio, so when Bassanio asks for 3000 ducats, Antonio says yes before knowing it’s to sue for the hand of Portia. His capital tied up in merchant ships at sea, Antonio must go to Shylock, a Jewish moneylender he reviles. Shylock wraps his grudge in kindness, offering a three-month loan at no interest, but if not repaid, Antonio will owe a pound of flesh. The Jew’s daughter elopes with a Christian, whetting Shylock’s hatred. While Bassanio’s away wooing Portia, Antonio’s ships founder, and Shylock demands his pound of flesh. With court assembled and a judgment due, Portia swings into action to save Bassanio’s friend.

Merchant of Venice is based on Shakespeare’s play and is one of Al Pacino’s greatest films. This is a pleasurable period piece with lessons on business partnerships, risk assessment and mercantile law that still hold value today.

Subject: Law

 

 

10. Office Space

office-space

This is a motivational movie which will help you to get out that awful lifestyle.

In the Initech office, the insecure Peter Gibbons hates his job and the abusive Division VP Bill Lumbergh that has just hired two consultants to downsize the company. His best friends are the software engineers Michael Bolton and Samir Nagheenanajar that also hate Initech, and his next door neighbor Lawrence. His girlfriend Anne is cheating on him but she convinces Peter to visit the hypnotherapist Dr. Swanson. Peter tells how miserable his life is and Dr. Swanson hypnotizes him and he goes into a state of ecstasy. However, Dr. Swanson dies immediately after giving the hypnotic suggestion to Peter.

He dates the waitress Joanna and changes his attitude in the company, being promoted by the consultants. When he discovers that Michael and Samir will be fired, they decide to plant a virus in the account system to embezzle fraction of cents in each financial operation into Peter’s account. However Michael commits a mistake in the software and instead of decimals, they steal a large amount…

Subject: Group dynamics and leadership

 

 

11. Lord of War.

This film charts the rise and fall of Yuri Orlov, from his early days in the early 1980s in Little Odessa, selling guns to mobsters in his local neighbourhood, through to his ascension through the decade of excess and indulgence into the early 90s, where he forms a business partnership with an African warlord and his psychotic son. The film also charts his relationship through the years with his younger brother, his marriage to a famous model, his relentless pursuit by a determined federal agent and his inner demons that sway between his drive for success and the immorality of what he does.

If you like dark comedy with a good bit of action,entrepreneurship skills, emerging markets, creative problem solving, crisis management, negotiation techniques, building customer loyalty, competitive strategies and geopolitics.Lord of War is a must-watch.

Subject: Entrepreneurship

 

12. Boiler Room (2000)

boiler-room

Seth Davis is a college dropout running an illegal casino from his rented apartment. Driven by his domineering fathers disapproval at his illegitimate existence and his desire for serious wealth, Seth suddenly finds himself seduced by the opportunity to interview as a trainee stock broker from recent acquaintance Greg (Nicky Katt). Walking into the offices of JT Marlin, a small time brokerage firm on the outskirts of New York – Seth gets an aggressive cameo performance from Jay (Ben Affleck) that sets the tone for a firm clearly placing money above all else. Seth’s fractured relationship with his father and flirtatious glances from love interest Abbie (Nia Long) are enough to keep Seth motivated in his new found career.

As he begins to excel and develop a love for the hard sale and high commission, a few chance encounters leads Seth to question the legitimacy of the firms operations – placing him once again at odds with his father and what remains of his morality. With homages to Wall..There are some great salesman tips to inspire you and also, it’ll help you stay true to your spirit and not become morally corrupt.

Subject: Sales and Marketing

13. Nightcrawler (2014)

nightcrawler

NIGHTCRAWLER is a thriller set in the nocturnal underbelly of contemporary Los Angeles. Jake Gyllenhaal stars as Lou Bloom, a driven young man desperate for work who discovers the window of opportunity after witnessing a crime and decides to become a crime journalist in L.A. Finding a group of freelance camera crews who film crashes, fires, murder and other mayhem, Lou muscles into the cut-throat, dangerous realm of nightcrawling – where each police siren wail equals a possible windfall and victims are converted into dollars and cents. Aided by Rene Russo as Nina, a veteran of the blood-sport that is local TV news, Lou blurs the line between observer and participant to become the star of his own story. This ,movie tells you that  with persuation drive, you can achieve greatness. It also teaches you tthe act of limitlessness. It is a must watch for people with vision.

“I will never ask you to do anything that I wouldn’t do myself.”

Subject: Strategy

 

 

14. The Usual Suspects.

the-usual-suspects

Following a truck hijack in New York, five professional criminals are arrested and brought together for questioning. As none of them are guilty, they plan a revenge operation against the police. The operation goes well, but then the influence of a legendary mastermind criminal called Keyser Söze is felt. isWithout the idea of who kerser Söze  is, it becomes clear that each one of them has wronged Söze at some point and must pay back now.  The movie  serves as valuable insight for established and aspiring entrepreneurs which explores themes like power and influence, leadership consolidation, long-term business strategy, innovative and creativity, marketing strategies and execution.

Subject: Strategy

 

 

15. Joy

 

joy

 

Joy has always loved creating things, this pursuit was always supported emotionally by her maternal grandmother, Mimi. She felt that lack of practical support has led to others making fortunes on ideas she came up with years ago but could not act upon manufacturing. Despite being broke, she is the person in her extended family to whom everyone has always turned, in the process forgoing her own life, including not having attended college to help see her parents through their divorce. She works in an unsatisfying job as an Eastern Airlines ticket clerk; and lives with her mother; her ex-husband; and their two children.

Since all hopes were on her, she forced her way to a self-made millionaire who created her own business empire despite the many failures she encounter ,and loans she owed.All those with dreams out there must watch this movie. it motivates you to push on and be yourself in the sea of mediocrity.

Subject: Sales and Marketing

 

 

16. Glengarry Glen Ross.

 

Glengarry Glen Ross is based on a real story behind the world of four estate salesmen whose jobs are on the line when the corporate mobbed-up corporate owners announces that in one week all except the top two men will be fired. This movie is filled with fun which showcase competition and manipulation. It teaches about customer relationship management, sales techniques, and negotiations.

Subject: Sales And Marketing

 

17. The Pursuit of Happyness (2006)

pursuit for hppyness

 

Based on a true story about a man named Christopher Gardner(Will Smith). Gardner has invested heavily in a device known as a “Bone Density scanner”. He knows he has made these devices and they will sell. But however, they do not sell as they are marginally better than the current technology at a much higher price. In the process of Gardner trying to figure out how to sell them; he loses his house; his bank account; credit cards and his wife leaves him. Forced to live out in the streets with his son, Gardner is now desperate to find a steady job; he takes on a job as a stockbroker, but before he can receive pay, he needs to go through 6 months of training, and to sell his devices.

It gives us the message of never giving up . “The world is your oyster. It’s up to you to find the pearls.”

Subject: Strategy

 

 

18. Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb.

Dr-Strangelove-

 

Dr. Strangelove is a brilliant Cold War irony, a movie which will keep you entertained from start to finish.

Paranoid Brigadier General Jack D. Ripper of Burpelson Air Force Base, believing that fluoridation of the American water supply is a Soviet plot to poison the U.S. populace is able to deploy through a back door mechanism a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union without the knowledge of his superiors, including the Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Buck Turgidson, and President Merkin Muffley.

Only Ripper knows the code to recall the B-52 bombers and he has shut down communication in and out of Burpelson as a measure to protect this attack. Ripper’s executive officer, RAF Group Captain Lionel Mandrake , who is being held at Burpelson by Ripper, believes he knows the recall codes if he can only get a message to the outside world.Meanwhile at the Pentagon War Room, key persons including Muffley, Turgidson and nuclear scientist and adviser, a former Nazi named Dr. Strangelove, are discussing measures to stop the attack or mitigate its blow-up into an all…

It will get you thinking about leadership and loyalty. And you’re guaranteed to have a good laugh with topics on geopolitics, influence and leadership.

Subject: Law

 

 

19. Thank You For Smoking.

thank you for smoking

Satirical comedy follows the machinations of Big Tobacco’s chief spokesman, Nick Naylor. Who creatively spins arguments on behalf of cigarettes in most challenging ways while trying to remain a role model for his twelve-year-old son. This is a great watch for those wanting to learn a few things about public relations; advertising campaigns; crisis management; corporate communications; PR and negotiation tactics.

 

Thank You For Smoking is the perfect film for a marketing savvy entrepreneur or someone who wants to learn a few tricks on how to sell just about any product. The film tells the story of tobacco industry lobbyist Nick Naylor; who creatively spins arguments to defend the cigarette industry in the most challenging of situations. Topics covered include public relations, marketing and advertising campaigns, crisis management, corporate communications and effective negotiations skills.

Subject: Sales and Marketing

 

20. The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

the_shawshank_redemption_catch_in_the_prison_yardthe_shawshank_redemption_catch_in_the_prison_yard

This movie tells the experiences of a formerly successful banker as a prisoner (being imprisoned for a false murder) finding solace and eventually redemption through simple acts of decency with an inmate named Red.  The protagonist Andy Dufresne  manages to make the best out of a very bad situation  through perseverance. He manages to achieve more than he ever thought possible.

Subject: Ethics

 

 

21. The Rainmaker.

The_Rainmaker

The Rainmaker is the story of young jobless attorney who takes on a corrupt insurance company in order to fight for the life of a boy with terminal leukemia. However, he is also the only hope of an elderly couple whose insurance company will not pay for an operation that could save their son’s life. The film portrays social relationship, bussiness ethics and laws, exemplifying the power of determination and social responsibility.

Subject : Ethics

 

 

22. Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room.

 

Enron dives from the seventh largest US company to bankruptcy in less than a year in this documentary film. The emphasis is on human drama. From suicide to 20,000 people sacked: the personalities of Ken Lay , Jeff Skilling, Lou Pai, and Andy Fastow dominate. Along the way, we watch Enron game California’s deregulated electricity market; get a free pass from Arthur Andersen; use greed to manipulate banks and brokerages; and hear from both Presidents Bush what great guys these are. It covers some top topics as; consolidation of report, accounting report, off-balance sheet accounting,agency problem and business ethics.

Subject: Strategy

 

 

23. Pirates of Silicon Valley (1999)

pirates of silicon valley

 

Pirates of silicon valley is a well crafted movie depicting the success of Bill Gates’ Microsoft Inc. and Steve Jobs Apple.  This is a semi-humorous biographical film about these two men who made the world of technology what it is today. Their struggles during college, the founding of their companies, and the ingenious actions they took to build up the global corporate empires of  Microsoft Inc. and Apple Computer Corporation.

Subject: Entrepreneurship

 

 

24. Forrest Gump (1994)

forest gump

 

Forrest Gump is a beautiful story about a simple man with a low I.Q. but good intentions. He is running through childhood with his best and only friend Jenny (the only person she thinks about). His ‘mama’ teaches him the ways of life and leaves him to choose his destiny. Forrest joins the army for service in Vietnam, finding new friends called Dan and Bubba; he wins medals; becomes a professional ping-pong player; takes up running; owns a huge shrimping company; write bumper stickers and song; meets the president several times; donates to people and inspires people all across the country. In all, he wants to prove that anyone can love any person. He also teaches that you don’t have to be genius to achieve something. All you have to do is try.

Subject: Ethics

 

 

25. Erin Brockovich.

 erin brock

 

Erin Brockovich-Ellis is an unemployed single mother, desperate to find a job, but is having no luck. This losing streak even extends to a failed lawsuit against a doctor in a car accident she was in. With no alternative, she successfully browbeats her lawyer to give her a job in compensation for the loss. She began to investigate a suspicious real estate case involving the Pacific Gas and Electric Company.

As she digs deeper, Erin finds herself leading point in a series of events that would involve her law firm; in one of the biggest class action lawsuits in American history against a multi-billion dollar corporation.It covers topics as; corporate social responsibility,gender biases in business, and sustainable business models.

Subject: Ethics and social responsibilities

 

 

 

26. Moneyball (2011)

moneyball

General manager of Oakland A’s, Billy Beane (Brad Pitt) was hamper with the lowest salary constraint in baseball. If he ever wants to win the World Series, Billy must find a competitive advantage without spending much on players. With statistical data to analyze and place value on the players he picks for the team, Billy finally turns his team around. With little to no money, this movie shows; how every entrepreneur can take an innovative approach to an existing way of doing business and beat out the competition.

Subject: Entrepreneurship

 

 

27. The Call Of The Entrepreneur

the call of the entreprenuer

The main subjects of the documentary are Brad Morgan (a failing dairy farmer from Evart, Michigan); Frank Hanna ( a merchant banker in New York City who originally hails from Georgia); and Jimmy Lai (a refugee from communist and also a twelve year old boy at the province of Hong Kong)

Morgan discusses his journey from a struggling dairy farmer to the owner and operator of a million-dollar composting operation. Hanna explains how financial engineering not only makes credit more widely available to entrepreneurs today; but also played a crucial role in the discovery of America. Lai talks about his childhood in Communist China and his move at twelve years old to Hong Kong. There, he founded Giordano, a retail outlet, and later Next Media. Lai explains that entrepreneurs, when taking risks, are “dashing into hope.”

Subject: Entrepreneurship

 

 

28.Ctrl+Alt+Compete

ctrl-alt-compete

 With Nolan Bushnell (Atari); Felicia Day (The Guild); Tony Hsieh (Zappos); Mike Maples Jr (Twitter); Tim O’Reilly (Web 2.0 Summit); Veronica Belmont (Tekzilla); and Cliff Bleszinski (Gears of War) as casts, Ctrl+Alt+Compete documents young tech-entrepreneurs seeking to solve problems and change the world.

Subject: Entrepreneur

 

 

29. Something Ventured (2011)

something ventured

SOMETHING VENTURED uncovers the ups and downs of the building of some of the greatest companies of the twentieth century. And the hidden dramas behind some of the most famous names in business. Behind some of the world’s most revolutionary companies are a handful of men who  saw opportunity where others did not. They are the original venture capitalists. Its  show you how to push through innovative ideas in a market that always likes to be self-satisfy. It also teaches you how things get fund.

Subject: Sales and Marketing

 

30. Jerry McGuire (1996)

 

 jerry-maguire

Jerry Maguire (Tom Cruise) is a successful sports agent. Until one night he questions his purpose. His place in the world, and finally comes to terms with what’s wrong with his career and life . Recording all his thoughts in a mission statement Jerry takes a big leaps of faith. Slowly , he identifies the best path for him to follow; and ultimately ends up being successful in both life and business. He faced rejection and people turned their back on him. But he still followed his chosen path till it rendered him victory at last. This movie shows you what it takes to stay at the top.

Subject: Entrepreneur and Ethics

 

31. Wall Street

wallstreet

Working for his firm during the day, Bud Fox spends his spare time working on an angle with the high-powered; extremely successful  broker Gordon Gekko. Bud Fox is a Wall Street stockbroker in early 1980’s New York with a strong desire to get to the top. Fox finally meets with Gekko; who takes the youth under his wing and teaches them his philosophy that “Greed is Good”. Taking the advice and working closely with Gekko. Fox soon find himself swept into a world of “yuppies”, shady business deals, the “good life”, fast money, and fast women; something which is at odds with his family including his estranged father and the blue-collared way Fox was brought up.

Subject: Finance

 

32. The Wolf of  Wall Street

WolfOfWallStreet

 

Based on the true story of Jordan Belfort, from his rise to a wealthy stock-broker living the high life to his fall involving crime, corruption and the federal government.

This movie tells the story of Jordan Belfort who is a Long Island penny stockbroker who served 22 months in prison – with shoe designer Steve Madden- for defrauding investors in a massive 1990s securities scam that involved widespread corruption on Wall Street and in the corporate banking world.

Subject: Finance