We can learn in many ways, and one of the most fun is watching movies about entrepreneurship .This is a way to get to know the stories behind iconic names, such as Walt Disney and Steve Jobs, how their empires emerged and what were the key points for them to achieve success. In this article we will provide you the list of 13 inspiring movies for entrepreneurs.
It also shows us the mishaps, adventures and risks that are part of every entrepreneur ‘s journey .
In this text, you can check out a list of 13 amazing films that will surely inspire you on your way ahead of your own business.
The list we prepared brings learnings such as persistence, adaptability , determination, focus, passion and other characteristics that boosted the business of several entrepreneurs .
Each with its own profile, the films are ideal to renew motivation in difficult times, whether during crises or moments when everything seems stagnant.
Below are the list of 13 inspiring movies for entrepreneurs.
1. Hunger For Power (2016)
The work tells the story of the most famous fast-food chain in the world: McDonald’s.
Opened in the 1940s, in the city of Arcadia (California), the restaurant served hamburgers, milk shakes and other foods with agility, standardization and at competitive prices.
They had already tried to expand the company through the franchising system , however, they were not successful.
Until, in 1954, after purchasing several Prince Castle milkshake blenders, the McDonald brothers received a visit from Ray Kroc, a salesman who had become curious about the cafeteria.
Knowing McDonald’s family environment, work ethic and innovative business model , Kroc immediately sees growth potential and works towards becoming a representative of the brand.
He convinces the owners to bet again on franchisees and, in the end, ends up becoming the owner of the chain, taking its branches to several countries.
“Hunger for Power” presents the importance of careful negotiations , in addition to the value of a brand with a good reputation.
2. Walt Before Mickey (2015)
As the name announces, the feature portrays the history of Walt Disney in the years leading up to the creation of his most iconic character , Mickey Mouse.
Full of difficulties and mistakes, but also of right decisions, the trajectory reveals several enterprising traits of the animator, screenwriter and filmmaker, who learned from an early age to fight to take his dreams off paper .
Extremely creative, Disney was hardworking, struggled to assemble the best teams and trusted his intuition – a fact that turned his projects into a huge conglomerate.
This is one of the biggest lessons present in the film: the power of betting on intuition to build products and services that connect with the emotions of the audience, resulting in a culture of customer delight .
3. The Pursuit Of Happiness (2006)
Speaking of stirring emotions , this work is likely to bring tears to even the most rational people.
Starring Will Smith, it traces the path of American businessman Chris Gardner in a very realistic way, showing a series of defeats before he was hired by a stockbroker.
Just to give an idea of the drama experienced by Gardner, he is abandoned by his wife, works for months as an unpaid intern and is even evicted from his home, which forces him to live on the street with his 5-year-old son.
Persistence and self-confidence are two of the most evident lessons learned in “The Pursuit of Happiness” because, even in the face of the most serious difficulties, the protagonist does not give up on an opportunity that he feels is promising.
Another essential lesson is that periods of failure are part of the journey of any successful entrepreneur, and that we should not listen to those who say that we cannot achieve a goal – even if it seems impossible.
4. The Wolf Of Wall Street (2013)
Representing the Wall Street lifestyle of ostentation, excess and greed , the film ends up teaching lessons about entrepreneurship and determination as it chronicles the life of Jordan Belfort.
The protagonist starts as a stockbroker in a company in 1987, but loses his job soon after having started working on October 19 – when there was a sudden drop in the Dow Jones index.
After the episode, which became known as Black Monday, Belford is encouraged by his wife to respond to a realtor job ad , always looking to enrich himself.
Soon he gets up, makes a small fortune and goes on, with an aggressive style, earning money until he opens his own company with a partner.
“The Wolf of Wall Street” talks about courage and focus on goals .
5. The Man Who Changed The Game (2011)
Also based on facts, the film was inspired by the book “Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game”, written by Michael Lewis.
Played by Brad Pitt, the central character is called Billy Beane and serves as the manager of the Oakland Athletics baseball team.
Small and with a very limited budget, the team is doing poorly, accumulating defeats, which leads Beane to open his mind to new strategies in the selection of players.
Instead of following the traditional recommendations of the sport‘s scouts, the manager decides to test a method created by young Peter Brand, which assigns scores according to the percentage of times players arrive at base.
The differentiated idea receives a lot of criticism, both from the team itself and from its coach and from scouts who discredit the potential of the team chosen according to Brand’s techniques.
But in the end, everyone is in for a surprise when the Oakland Athletics achieve an incredible record of 20 straight American League victories , making their strategy used by several baseball teams in the 2000s.
“The Man Who Changed the Game” extols flexibility, the ability to reinvent and adapt to achieve superior performance, as well as an innovative spirit – all hallmarks of successful entrepreneurs.
6. Coco Before Chanel (2009)
Here’s another movie nomination that shows the way to success – and fame -, this time, from the renowned French stylist Gabrielle Chanel .
Nicknamed “Coco”, she has humble origins, needing to work as a seamstress and supplement her income by singing in a bar at night.
The beginning of the turning point in her life came from contact with the wealthy Étienne Balsan, who soon became her lover and inspired her to break the taboos that surrounded women’s fashion in the first decades of the 20th century.
Observing the way of dressing men, Chanel created pieces for women that put aside the corset and other items that marked the silhouette, in favor of comfort.
She was the first designer to design women’s pants and suits.
When watching “Coco Antes de Chanel”, it is worth noting the stylist’s determination, in her struggle to break the standards of a sexist society and promote lasting transformations.
7. Joy: The Name Of Success (2015)
If you feel discouraged by the actions of people close to you, we recommend that you watch this feature in the next few days.
“Joy: the name of success” tells about the life of Joy Mangano, a mother of two, divorced and who works in the service of an airline.
Nothing unusual, right?
However, the protagonist runs the house she shares with her grandmother, mother, children and ex-husband, in addition to mediating conflicts between her father and mother and continually enduring humiliation on the part of her half-sister.
In the midst of this family chaos , Joy barely finds time to put her entrepreneurial ideas into practice, but everything changes in the face of a seemingly unimportant episode.
When wine glasses fall to the floor and break, Joy tries to clean up the mess with a conventional mop and ends up cutting her hand by twisting the equipment.
It was the push that was needed for her to seek to change her professional and financial condition , building the project and prototype of a mop with a self-cleaning function.
Played by Jennifer Lawrence, the character manages to launch her product, negotiate with parts manufacturers and even advertise the mop on television, resulting in a burst of sales .
However, she faces upheavals and betrayals by her own father and half-sister, who had moved to run the business in another city.
Still, Joy teaches a lesson in humility and generosity as she grows up and mentors young entrepreneurs years later.
8. Forrest Gump – The Storyteller (1994)
The American classic portrays decades in the life of Forrest Gump, a simple man and inferior at various times for having a below average IQ and leg problems during his childhood.
Instead of complaining, the character has faith in his own potential, which leads him to discover talents such as the ability to compete in races and the entrepreneurial streak.
During his career, he meets several places and personalities such as Elvis Presley, John Lennon and former US President Richard Nixon.
In addition to self-belief, “Forrest Gump – The Storyteller” teaches how to take advantage of opportunities to grow and be resilient , as the protagonist launches a series of businesses in different segments.
In the end, he accumulates valuable experiences and manages to enjoy unique moments with his wife and son.
9. Jobs (2013)
Biography of the founder of Apple , the feature begins with one of the impact speeches made by Steve Jobs – in 2001, when he presented the world with the first iPod, promising that the device would revolutionize the music industry.
And so it was with most of the entrepreneur‘s inventions, who built Apple based on his transformative ideas.
Not by chance, Jobs has become one of the greatest references for entrepreneurs today.
And his biography has been an inspiration to cultivate creativity and negotiation skills .
But what we want to highlight about this work is the concept of innovation , which is not restricted to inventiveness.
Innovation can be in a different way of looking at a product, delivering a service or proposing solutions that respond to the demands of the target audience.
Jobs knew this all too well, and he used his unconventional perspective to combine systems to create, for example, the world’s first personal computer: the Apple 1.
10. The Social Network (2010)
Another drama that focuses on the life of a tech genius, the work shows the controversial facts that led to the founding of Facebook , and ends up revealing interesting traits about Mark Zuckerberg and his colleagues.
One of the biggest social networks that ever existed, Facebook was inspired by an unfriendly idea that compared the beauty of students at Harvard University, in the USA.
The girls had photos published on a page and received votes to choose which one was more beautiful.
Shortly after, its creators noticed that the virtual address could serve for social interactions between students , expanding to other universities quickly, and Zuckerberg negotiated formats to make money from his new website.
After 6 years, he was recognized as the youngest billionaire in the world, but controversies over the credits and the idea that gave rise to Facebook earned him lawsuits in court.
“The Social Network” addresses the importance of investing in creative ideas and ways to make them profitable.
It also warns about choosing reliable partners and business ethics.
11. Door To Door (2002)
Moving and based on a true story, the film tells the story of Bill Porter, a man who suffers from cerebral palsy and struggles for a job as a door-to-door salesman (hence the name).
Despite the limitations, his determination and the support of his mother make him get the position, however, he does not reach the goals during the first days of sale.
Persistent, Porter asks for one more opportunity to show his ability and, finally, sells the first books to an alcoholic, presenting his products as items that can help the customer.
He applies this technique and becomes successful by treating customers as friends and focusing not on the product, but on their needs to maximize his results.
In addition to the promising method, “De Porta em Porta” highlights the value of challenging yourself to break with limits imposed by society or low self-esteem, and the discipline necessary to achieve lasting results.
12. The Big Short (2016)
If you are a fan of stocks and stock exchanges, you will like this work .
And if not, you will learn a lot about the housing bubble and the crisis it triggered when it burst in 2008.
“The Big Bet” was born under the inspiration of real events that led a group of brokers to make a fortune after one of them noticed that loans made had a high risk of default.
Betting against fraudulent trades , he saw a chance to become rich and ended up influencing other investors.
Attention to detail and numbers is one of the lessons learned in the film, along with consulting trusted experts and being careful when investing.
Instead of following what the market pointed out – the success of real estate bonds – the group acted on its own investigation, supported by real data.
There’s a beautiful balcony to question common sense , opening space for smart exits.
13. Citizen Kane (1941)
A critical success, the work of Orson Welles portrays the price of the excessive ambition of the magnate Charles Foster Kane.
The character starts life in poverty and without any attention, which awakens the desire to improve his condition and provide relevant social service.
This is how Kane invests in journalism and, as he succeeds, he grows rich in ways he never imagined.
Conquests whet his appetite for power and status, which he does, in fact, indulge, but which also gets in the way of his personal relationships, making the tycoon a loner.
In his final moments, he recalls the only phase of his life when he was truly happy, evoking the Rosebud sled, which is seen as an irrelevant article and burned shortly after his death.
Among the lessons learned from “Citizen Kane”, it is worth mentioning the moments of loneliness faced by every entrepreneur and the importance of leaving a legacy that makes a difference to the people around us.
What To Absorb From Films That Address The Topic Of Entrepreneurship?
Contrary to what many believe, entrepreneurship is a journey full of unglamorous moments .
There are sleepless nights, tight deadlines, difficulties in finding investors, uncertain and even tricky negotiations from whom the entrepreneur expected support, such as friends and family.
However, those who choose to take the lead and have their own business will also be building their freedom and leaving their mark on the world.
So, when faced with a barrier, take a deep breath, consult mentors and professionals you trust, and listen to your intuition.
We hope that you have noted the list of 13 inspiring movies for entrepreneurs.