Here’s another birthday gift for you in honor of my 36th birthday this past weekend and I HIGHLY suggest you take advantage of it ASAP
I’m a big movie buff, as it’s a great way to decompress after a stressful day or week of trading, but by and large business and finance movies suck.
Download the key points of this post as PDF.
Aside from this huge entertaining hit movie, about a career criminal who is still scheming every day and basing his new company in Australia, thus not paying back his US victims, as I exposed in the blog post “The Wolf Of Wall Street’s New Scheme,” there are VERY few solid ones for you to see, as you might know if you read my blog post “The 5 Best Wall Street Movies“.
But that doesn’t stop new ones from popping up, so I sat down to see the newest hardcore business movie The Founder which is about:
The story of Ray Kroc, a salesman who turned two brothers’ innovative fast food eatery, McDonald’s, into one of the biggest restaurant businesses in the world with a combination of ambition, persistence and ruthlessness.
…I didn’t have any high hopes, especially because it didn’t have great IMDB reviews, nor did it win any awards whatsoever, despite Michael Keaton being a pretty popular actor again thanks to his starring roles in recent hits like Birdman And Spotlight, both of which won tons of awards and were some of the years’ best movies in 2014 and 2015.
This was his 2016 starring movie and while it didn’t win any awards and it wasn’t popular — in fact it bombed — it’s actually a VERY useful film for helping you understand the business world and its ugliness/reality.
Perhaps viewers don’t like seeing what the real business and financial world is like. After all, the greatly educational movie, Boiler Room, preceded The Wolf of Wall Street by over a decade and it too bombed because it simply wasn’t a fun or happy story.
No matter that Jordan Belfort is a career criminal who scammed thousands of people, thanks to his highly unethical and illegal business schemes, audiences everywhere enjoyed watching him live out his fantasies with no concern whatsoever for his victims while the movie that was more responsible, accurate, educational and focused on the victims was hugely unpopular.
So that’s lesson #1 for The Founder too — this movie was HUGELY unpopular with audiences because it focused on the business aspect in some very technical scenes that would be appreciated by anyone in a consumer business, but mainstream society just sees it and yawns.
At least this movie focuses on a legal business operation, but long story short, the masses are dumb and want instant gratification, not actual useful lessons in business reality, which is why it’s so difficult for just anyone to become a true success/self-made millionaire…they have the wrong mindset/priorities in life.
Lesson #2 is you should still see this movie because even if you don’t enjoy it thoroughly for entertainment purposes — i.e. this is NOT a date movie unless you and your partner are both competitive entrepreneurs or startup founders — it’s useful in educating you to the ugly side of business aka the real world of startups and entrepreneurship.
Lesson #3 is that there’s usually an ugly side to the “business heroes” and “best companies” that you know of as those who have succeeded greatly have usually trampled on everyone else to get to the top — it’s truly a cut throat world and as you get higher and higher, you see more and more corruption, deceit and lies…it’s sad but true and as I’ve said repeatedly lately, much to the surprise of pretty much everyone, I’m VERY happy to “only” have a few million dollars** in my bank accounts as I NEVER want to be a billionaire as all the mega-rich people I know are extremely unhappy, weird and somewhat or even entirely imprisoned by their incredible wealth, thus unable to live life to the fullest and form real and normal relationships anymore, they’ve almost become aliens…if I keep getting more and more successful, I’ll just keep donating millions and millions** more to my charity foundation as I get a ton of fulfillment giving back to those who need money much more than I do at this point in my life.
Lesson #4 is that it takes SO much damn work and tinkering to make any business successful, it’s actually pretty amazing and rewarding when you do find the right combination…my little education business is nowhere the size of a giant company yet, but we have been doubling or nearly doubling in size every year the past few years and as you can see form my latest trading challenge success story, we have our teaching down to a science to benefit students the most, and it took me nearly 10-years to refine the process:
Lesson #5 is that if you want to achieve something badly enough, you find ways to make it happen. This movie isn’t the most uplifting business or otherwise story you’ll ever see, but you do end up respecting the main character’s determination and ambition and given that we know it’s a true story and we know how it pans out long after the main character has played his role, it’s cool to turn back the clock and see the initial stages. I highly recommend the book “McDonald’s: Behind The Arches” if you want to learn more details about the founding of the world’s most successful restaurant, it’s pretty crazy how it all came to be!