Here’s a great list of entrepreneurial films that I want you guys to watch — pronto!
Keep in mind that I’ve linked to the trailers for each, instead of the full movies that are also available on the Tube.
Well, the trailers give you a taste for the amazing story-telling and inspiration you’ll get from each, and they’ll be up on there forever. The full-length copies can be taken down any day, but feel free to search if you don’t want to pay for them on Netflix or whatever.
1. Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work
This documentary follows the comedian for an entire year as she tries to re-invent herself and revive her career. Beyond that, this movie is a primer for anyone looking for self-made success. The documentary shows how a successful person organizes their day (she’s as meticulous as they come) and the gut-wrenching determination needed to be on top. And it’s at the top of my list because I just watched it and love it.
Joan Rivers epitomizes entrepreneurship.
“She was just a comedian and television personality”, you say?
Born to a poor Russian immigrant family at the height of the great depression, she elevated herself to celebrity status using relentless and fearless passion. She was always known as a “closer” among fellow comedians, meaning nobody wanted to go on stage after she’d wowed the audience. She then systematically parlayed her courageous wit into show business becoming Johnny Carson’s co-host on the Tonight Show, then a series of successful talk shows, documentaries and reality shows over the course of 60 some-odd years. Very inspiring for women and men.
2. Something Ventured
Before Silicon Valley was officially named, there were the men and women building the foundation of the information era. This one is just awesome, with a look inside the venture capitalists that helped get the first video game console (Atari) into American homes, early Apple investors, the beginnings of Intel, and the investors that took a chance on helping to build Yahoo into one of the largest online empires still to this day.
What’s so cool to watch is the insights into the mindsets of these investors — doling their cash out practically on a whim. Something Ventured shows you that it’s not all about balance sheets and projections when it comes to picking a winner. Many of the biggest successes in tech happened because of forward-thinking vision in companies with products that didn’t yet have a market. While we’ve all heard the Apple story, it was funny listening the early investors talk about how unappealing Wozniack and Jobs were back in their basement-dwelling days.
I’ve taken you from a documentary about guts and determination, coupled with a strong sense of planning and organization with Joan Rivers, to the need to trust your instincts and see into the future with Something Ventured. Now we need to get inside the minds of people as a whole — to see how the supply chain works and what motivates people to want the things they want.
Inspired by the best selling book of the same title by economist Steven Levitt and NYT journalist Stephen Dubner, this film is a definite must! You know when Morgan Spurlock is involved, there’s gonna be some real truth-telling going on. The most interesting thing for me in this film is the in-depth look at how industries from education right down to fast food are constantly using incentives to separate people from their hard-earned cash. Truly epic film if you have aspirations beyond the 9-5 lifestyle.
Which was your favorite?
Is your favorite entrepreneurial documentary on the list? If not, do share!
Main image by Patrick Nouhailler