When was the last time you watched a movie that motivated or inspired you to do better, to be better? We could all use a helpful nudge on our paths to career greatness and these movies do just that. This weekend, sit back, relax, enjoy the show (and get motivated).
Hidden Figures (2017)
*watch it in cinemas
You’ve read about Russia and the United States’ race to put the first man in space. But did you know that their pivotal achievement was possible because of three women? Hidden Figures tells the untold and incredible story of African-American mathematicians, Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughn and Mary Jackson. The trio worked for NASA as the brains behind the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit against all odds.
Movie Quote: “I will have you know, I was the first negro female student at West Virginia university graduate school. On any given day, I analyse the binomial levels air displacement, friction and velocity. And compute over ten thousand calculations by cosine, square root and lately analytic geometry. By hand. There are twenty, bright, highly capable negro women in the west computing group, and we’re proud to be doing our part for the country. So yes, they let women do some things at NASA, Mr Johnson. And it’s not because we wear skirts. It’s because we wear glasses.”
The Pursuit of Happyness (2006)
Based on the true story of a man who persevered when he was left with nothing and rose from the ashes. Christopher Gardner was a salesman believed in the “portable bone density scanner” he was selling and invested his life’s savings in them. However, these machines aren’t the easiest to sell. As he tries to figure out how to sell them, Gardner’s wife leaves him and their son, he loses his house, his car and runs out of money. Forced to tough it out on the streets and homeless shelters with his son, Gardner is determined to turn his luck and life around. To do this, he enrolled in a 6 month (unpaid) internship program to become a stockbroker.
Movie Quote: “Don’t ever let someone tell you, you can’t do something. Not even me. You got a dream, you gotta protect it. People can’t do something themselves, they want to tell you-you can’t do it. You want something, go get it. Period.”
The Devil Wears Prada (2006)
*watch it on iflix
An aspiring journalist lands a job “a million girls would kill for” at Runway fashion magazine. Andrea Sachs is the junior personal assistant to editor-in-chief Miranda Priestly. She puts up with one eccentric request after another to put her journalism career on the fast-track. If she lasts a year in Runway that is. As Andrea learns the ropes, the lines of her personal and professional life get blurred. Her relationships suffer and in the end, Andrea has to decide if this is the career or the life she wants.
Movie Quote: “Let me know when your whole life goes up in smoke. Means it’s time for a promotion.”
Morning Glory (2010)
*watch it on iflix
Hard-working TV producer Becky is desperate when she unceremoniously finds herself fired. While desperately job-hunting, Becky accepts the position of producer for a struggling morning TV show called Daybreak. In between trying to improve the show’s ratings, weeding out the bad seeds and getting her co-host to do his job, Becky’s resilience and unfailing passion for her job is a sight for sore eyes.
Movie Quote: “You had a dream, you know? Great. When you were eight, it was adorable. When you were eighteen, it was inspiring. At twenty-eight, it’s officially embarrassing. And I just want you to stop before we get to “heartbreaking.”
The Theory of Everything (2014)
The brilliant Stephen Hawking needs no introduction. This movie offers a glimpse into the lives of Stephen Hawking and Jane Wilde in the 1960s. Jane is the arts student he fell in love with at Cambridge. The Theory of Everything sheds light on how Hawking continued to rise above his circumstances: battling the diagnosis of ALS at the age of 21, falling in love, getting married and fathering three children. He defied all odds, became a renowned astrophysicist and continues to change the world with his brilliant mind.
Movie Quote: “There should be no boundaries to human endeavour. We are all different. However bad life may seem, there is always something you can do, and succeed at. While there’s life, there is hope.”
Walt Before Mickey (2015)
*watch it on Netflix
Based on the book of the same name, Walt Before Mickey details the early years of Walt Disney’s life and career. From humble beginnings, coming back from war to starting his animation company, dealing with copyright losses and more, Walt Before Mickey depicts the trials that shaped Walt before he brought Mickey Mouse to life.
Movie Quote: “Let me tell you something about life… always finish what you start and anything worth doing, is worth doing well.”
*watch it and Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps on iflix
If you haven’t heard about stock speculator Gordon Gekko and his “Greed is Good” philosophy by now, you should definitely watch Wall Street this weekend. As far as career advice goes, stay clear of Gekko’s ruthless approach. Wall Street tells the story of a budding stockbroker, Bud Fox in the early 1980s. Gekko takes advantage of Fox’s desire to get to the top by any means necessary. He uses Fox to get insider information. As secret plans unfold and the authorities catch up. Greed, as it turns out, isn’t good at all.
Movie Quote: “The thing with money is, it makes you do things you don’t want to do.”