The Company Men
In America, we give our lives to our jobs. It's time to take them back.
Bobby Walker is living the proverbial American dream: great job, beautiful family, shiny Porsche in the garage. When corporate downsizing leaves him and co-workers Phil Woodward and Gene McClary jobless, the three men are forced to re-define their lives as men, husbands and fathers.
The decline and fall of the American Male, I guess? I don’t know. This movie is so caught up in a particular form of male vanity, it doesn’t seem to realize how foreign it makes itself to anyone outside that experience. Not that I don’t recognize these characters; a lot of men I’ve known throughout my life subscribe to this definition of manhood: you, and you alone (or, at least, you primarily) provide for your family, you keep moving up and up and up, and if you fail at that, regardless of why, you’re not a man. It is intrinsic to their identity, and it is destructive.
There’s a feint toward the virtues of what only a lifetime middle-class white-color…
John Wells means well and his heart is in the right place, but some sequences in this film are just laughable. It's tough to not roll your eyes while Wells tries to make a scene where a character has to get rid of his club membership emotional or when a scene involving Affleck playing football with his coworkers is played out as if the king has finally decided to acknowledge the peasants. Having said that, Wells views are hard to be against and the cast all bring some humanity to otherwise dull characters. Chris Cooper's performance and storyline is the best thing about The Company Men. Everything else falls somewhere between "eh" and "pretty good".
Solid drama, but it never manage to hit the cord. It just flows where it's supposed to. Well, easily forgotten then! :)
Chris Cooper, Ben Affleck and Tommy Lee Jones discuss why they are no longer relevent to the busines.
Whole thing accidentally filmed and released as a movie
A moving film, gripping at today’s uncertainty and fear of our nation’s economic stability, and the idea that at any moment everything can be taken away, The Company of Men deals with this in a sincere and yet not overly dramatic way. The film follows three different men, each working for the same company at different points in their careers, as they deal with the loss of their jobs and the consequences of its affect not only on themselves but also with their loved ones, as they search to find “new “ meaning in their lives. It’s a touching film that reveals our sometimes false sense of security, buying and spending, forgetting the essentials that truly make our lives significant…
Not even the great Roger Deakins behind the camera can elevate this beyond being a dull, underwritten episode from one of John Wells’ small-screen ventures — the frenetic pace of ER wouldn’t have suited the subject matter, but there was ample room for the same sparkling, walkie-talkie dialogue that made The West Wing so fervent.
In the department of small mercies, the acting is uniformly good and Kevin Costner delivers some of his best character work almost without opening his mouth.
A superb cast and a script that scores some rather easy points in its dissection of the disease spread from corporate greed, absurd leader salaries and bonuses, and the successful sale of the corporate version of “The American Dream” - only the way outdated Wild West US weapons laws seems more insane from the outside.
Rewatch-probability: 2 - Not likely
story, reviews, cast!
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
A rather saccharine tale of unemployment not helped by the lead character being a total a*hole
Totally forgetable. It's called inciting incident, and this movie doesn't have one. The layoff in the first five minutes? No. Why would anyone want to watch a movie about a situation the entire workforce lived through in some way or another? What is this movie about?!
And just once I want to see a big business movie where the actors know how to act as artificial and sterile as these elitists act in real life. The actors think they're playing a person--wrong. To be convincing they should play it as soulless humanoid--the acting should be pretentious and insecure, yet overconfident, smiling, and selling, perhaps even obnoxiously oblivious, almost coming off amateurish or strangely empty like glass, or an alien mimicking…
Kellemes csütörtök esti meglepetés egy kanapéra borulós nap után. Tomy Lee Jones még mindig istenkirály monológokban.
This directorial début from veteran TV producer John Wells has a cast that includes Ben Affleck, Tommy Lee Jones, Chris Cooper, Maria Bello and Kevin Costner. Three corporate high fliers have to deal with the affects of the recession on their company and losing their jobs.
Given all the talent involved it is not surprising that this is a well made film but it ends up falling rather flat. There are plenty of important and contemporary issues raised in this film but the script seems to lack any real depth or detail to fully explore what went wrong and how men in particular struggle with suddenly being unable to support their family. Another side issue of the film is that it is a little harder to empathise with rich people losing their jobs when the affect on the less affluent is much harsher.
john wells commentary
workers pointing to stuff they built, executives pointing to possessions
John Wells' The Company Men is the first film I've seen since Jacob Aaron Estes' The Details that makes a bold, commendable attempt at penetrating the interworkings of the male psyche. It shows diminishing feelings of a male's self worth and value after being fired from his job, using the 2007-08 economic crisis in the United States as the backdrop for this story. Considering how timely and significant this material is, it's unfortunate how forgotten and ignored this film is.
The film follows the impact the crisis had on the fictional, multi-billion dollar business Global Transportation Systems ("GTX"), which is facing large and prolific downsizing after the market plummets. One of the men let go is Bob Walker (Ben Affleck),…
Affleck's "highly qualified applicant" speech unintentionally works as the film in microcosm. All the pieces are there; the film's resume is impressive. Ultimately, though, I pass.