Office Space (1999) is a cult classic comedy film about a young man’s frustrations with working in an uninspiring desk job. The film, directed by Mike Judge, is still enjoyable today, even though it was made over 25 years ago and that shows its brilliance. Ron Livingston and Jennifer Aniston were perfect in their roles. The dialogues spoken inside the office were sharp and witty, reminding us of The Dilbert comic strip mocking the absurdity of the modern-day corporate world. It gets a Raw from mangoidiots.
The film doesn’t go into length on any particular issue but still manages to capture the essence of how employees feel, like the hatred people exhibit towards an office printer which has a mind of its own or how bosses put their staff in a fix by asking them on a Friday evening to come to work over the weekend and so on. If the movie Up in the Air, which came a decade later glorified the consultant who gets hired only to fire people, here we see incompetent outside consultants who come to plan the downsizing. What really impressed me was the dialogue in that the protagonist Peter Gibbons speaks to the consultants about the lack of motivation he is feeling in his job, he rightly says it is not the lack of money or the equity but the lack of purpose and a bad manager who rob workers of their inspiration.
Normally, in comedy films like these, the heroines are shown to be foolish, but here Joanna is strong, honest and smart. She is clear on right and wrong and without hesitation expresses her thoughts to her boyfriend. One of Peter’s coworkers is engaged in communication between the customer and their internal software engineers, which is a clear redundancy in effort but one which was not obvious to the manager who is doing it – a few management lessons like these were also there in the movie.
Watching the early desktop computers being used was nostalgic. The film talks of a virus that is let loose on purpose in the company’s mainframe running banking software, today we call these malicious software trojans.