Sundance Channel contributor Wendy Todd delivers her Top Ten Films About Hating Your Job.
Not loving your J.O.B.? For anyone who's ever wanted to enact the Jet Blue escape plan, open up a hatch and slip down a rubber slide to flee a nine-to-five, here's a top ten list of movies about people that feel the same way. Misery loves company so make sure to check out these films before going all "Steven Slater" and clocking out once and for all.
10. Willard (2003)
This remake of the 70's movie BEN is about a socially awkward young man, Willard Stiles who feels more comfortable with his pet rats than with people. After being forced out of his deceased father's company and repeatedly humiliated by his co-workers, his anti-social back is broken by the final straw of one of his rats being killed at work. Now, it's on! Stiles, unleashes his deadly army of rodents on his ex-coworkers to exact his revenge and commit horrific murders. This movie should tell you that no matter how much you hate your job, it's better to let it go!
9. Set if Off (1996)
Francesca "Frankie" Sutton (Vivica A. Fox) gets shafted at her job at the bank after a robbery. She joins Cleo (Queen Latifah in a breakout role as a lesbian gone gangsta), who convinces her and some of her homegirls to ditch their jobs cleaning offices for a belittling supervisor, and become bank robbers. They become successful until yep, they get caught (all except for one). Watch and pretend you're the one who gets away.
8. Training Day (2001)
In an Academy Award winning performance Denzel Washington portrays a bad cop on the take that partners with a rookie undercover officer, (Ethan Hawke) and makes his first day on duty absolute torture. Getting set up for murder and being set up to be murdered is all in a day's work for Hawke when riding with this shady veteran who shakes people down to pay off the Russian mob! No matter how much you hate your job, the bright spot is that your boss probably won't take a hit out on you!
7. Clerks (1994)
Called to fill in at the Quickstop, Dante Hicks (Brian O'Halloran) is in slacker heaven as he plays golf with a buddy on the roof, complains to customers, and leaves work to attend a his ex-girlfriend's funeral (where he inadvertently knocks over the casket). This Kevin Smith classic shows how one can have a full day at work without actually working! If you have creative ways of killing time at a job you hate, this is the flick for you!
6. Working Girl (1988)
Melanie Griffith stars in this comedy about a woman, Tess McGill who suffers a thankless secretarial position until she is paired with a new executive in the company, Katherine Parker (Sigourney Weaver) who she believes will be her first mentor. Unbeknownst to her, Parker begins stealing her ideas and plans to present them as her own. McGill turns the tables on this tricky VP and pretends to be Parker while she's incapacitated with a broken leg from a ski trip. This is the perfect movie to help you strategize your takeover!
5. The Devil Wears Prada (2006)
Andrea Sachs (Anne Hathaway) is a recent college grad who scores a juicy job working as the assistant to Miranda Priestly, (Meryl Streep) editor-in-chief of Runway magazine. This film, allegedly based on Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of Vogue magazine, shows Sachs paying her dues as she's eaten up and spit out (no one in the fashion world actually swallows their food do they?) by the superficial and cut-throat world of fashion, all while in competition with Priestly's right hand girl, Emily Charlton (Emily Blunt). If you think staying late to make a million copies is bad, at least you don't have to take care of your boss' dog in five inch heels!
4. Fight Club (1999)
Ed Norton plays a burnt out auto company employee who, in an attempt to address his aggressive unhappiness unknowingly develops an alter ego who likes to fight. His alternative persona, played by Brad Pitt creates an underground club of yes, fighters who engage in pit brawls to cope with their hum-drum lives. The fight club morphs into a group of corporate marauders who try to take down "the man" and subsequently (to put it mildly) get way out of hand. On those really bad days this David Fincher film can serve as a substitute for punching out your boss and blowing up the building!
3. American Beauty (1999)
Lester Burnham (Kevin Spacey) rebels against a dead-end job and passionless marriage by developing a mid-life crisis crush on his teen age daughter's friend, Angela (Mena Suvari) whose mere existence motivates him to change his life. This change comes in the form of financially extorting his boss, quitting his corporate job and working at a fast food restaurant. In a tangled web of romantic affairs Burnham meets an untimely demise. This movie will probably help inspire you to avoid unnecessary drama and just go and get a better job!
2. Nine to Five (1980)
Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin and Dolly Parton star in this classic 80's flick about three women working for a misogynistic manager (Dabney Coleman) who makes their lives hell. While the ladies commiserate with some "herbal" comfort, each fantasizes about bumping off the boss. Later, in a strange and hysterical string of events they nearly get their wish! After finding he's been embezzling, the trio of revenge seekers plots to turn him in. They instead wind up getting him promoted and sent away to Brazil where he's captured by Amazon natives and disappears! This is the perfect film to sweep you into the fantasy of workplace revenge!
1. Office Space (1999)
Peter Gibbons, a software engineer, (Ron Livingston) and his workplace cronies have reached their limit with the suck fest they call work. Together they create a computer program that siphons off their corporations finances penny by penny. The object of Gibbons affection, played by Jennifer Aniston, is also a dissatisfied worker, a waitress disgusted with her boss and the mandatory practice of donning excessive "flare" pins. This is a cult classic that turned the sentiment of the song, "Take This Job and Shove it"; into a full length feature film. So if you really hate your job this movie will at the very least help you laugh about it.