Top 5 Movies Every Young Hustler Should Watch
With the ongoing winter rising over NYC, nothing feels better than staying in and binge watching some awesome, inspiring (B.O.S.S.) movies. Here I’ve listed some of my favorites, mostly because I can relate to them in one way or another.
Quick backstory: I'm an average guy from Queens, that grew up working in stock brokerage boiler rooms/chop shops in Long Island. I made hundreds of calls daily and then took the plunge and changed career courses. I then had to find big clients and do whatever it took to successfully work with them. I had to seize opportunities while the economy was in turmoil, take massive bets that paid off, built a team that became family, and worked my ass off. For these reasons, I love hearing about entrepreneurial come-up stories. And for the most part, these movies tell exactly that.
* Please note that I absolutely don't condone and didn't partake in the crazy stuff they do in these movies – such as drug use, midget tossing, and breaking the law – but I can certainly assure you that a lot of these plots are very true and all too real. As the moral of the story goes… easy come easy go… and a lot of times in handcuffs.
Check my selection out and be sure to comment your thoughts and/or your own recommendations. Now pop that corn and get the movie night going!
1. Wall Street
Before Charlie Sheen pretty much spiraled out of control, he played the role of a young up-and-comer named Bud Fox. Fox is a young hustling, cold calling, average sales person, born to a middle class family in Queens, NY, who has a job as a stockbroker. With the pressures of a demanding boss, petty clients, and lack of money, every day he dreams of landing a whale of a client Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas). The movie outlines the comeup story of an average Joe, who lands his dream client, and makes it in the high flying world of finance, meeting his dream girl, and making a small fortune. We all can relate to the aspirations of this young hustler. Be careful however, that you don't take any shortcuts or you may end up in handcuffs and the house of glass comes down shattering. Wall Street 2 was also pretty awesome.
Sneak Peak: https://youtu.be/-WJ_2ycsHl8
2. Boiler Room
“Notorious B.I.G. said it best, either you're slinging crack rock, or you got a wicked jump shot.' Nobody wants to work for it anymore. There's no honor in taking the after school job at Mickey D's. Honor's in the dollar, kid. So I went the white boy way of slinging crack rock. I became a stockbroker.” Seth Davis (played by Giovanni Ribisi) is an average kid from Queens that started a small illegal casino in a house he rented out. Although he was getting by, everything changed when an old friend and business colleague stops by the house in a yellow Lamborghini. This movie is a glimpse into how a college dropout quickly becomes one of his company’s greatest sales person, and all the struggles that comes with it. He's just about to take it to the next level when he realizes that some of the products he's selling is ruining the lives of his clients. Boiler Room is a “must see” for those of you who can relate to the world of finance, cold calling, corporate ladder climbing, etcetera – all while understanding that there are no short cuts! Ben Affleck's speech during his recruiting goes down in history as one of the most in-your-face business scenes on the big screen. Watch it!
Sneak Peak: https://youtu.be/JfIKzReNDF4
3. The Big Short
The financial crisis of 2008-2009 decimated wealth across the globe in the trillions. For a lucky few however, this was the opportunity of a lifetime. The Big Short is a star studded drama that follows the lives of three groups of people that see investment opportunities that for some reason nobody else sees. I've personally watched this movie several times, and it doesn't get old! My main takeaway? Some time in the early 1990’s the stock brokerage boiler rooms closed and those owners opened up mortgage brokerage chop shops that brokered Billions of dollars to people who couldn't afford those mortgages. Banks were giving away money and financial institutions packaged and sold these mortgages to the general market. The bottom line? A world wide housing crisis and financial collapse. When there is chaos and fear, seek the opportunity of a lifetime. It may be right in front of you.
Sneak Peak: https://youtu.be/xbiDrzTd8fE
4. The Wolf of Wall Street
Jordan Belfort was really called The Wolf of Wall Street back in the 1980’s. His company Stratton Oakmont was a large boiler room stock brokerage firm that broke all the rules of the SEC and Finance Laws. Although Stratton Oakmont was certainly not the only boiler room in Long Island, NY or across the US, it was the most publicized. Leonardo DiCaprio crushes it in this movie that has all the glamour, glitz, drugs, and boys locker room camaraderie one can ask for. Jordan Belfort was the inspiration of many real life brokerage firms, boiler rooms, and of course movies. It's an in your face must see come up story that ends the way many “flash in the pan” success stories do, handcuffs. Jonah Hill is BOSS in this movie. Check it out!
Sneak Peak: https://youtu.be/4jOV0gaNKj0
Okay so all the movies unmentioned before were really all finance and banking related, so thought I needed to switch it up. Ashton Kutcher rocked this movie in his adaptation of the story of Steve Jobs. Starting from the garage of his parents’ house, Jobs and partner Wozniak founded Apple Computer which went on to revolutionize the personal computer. We follow the ups and downs of reaching the peak of success, losing it all, then starting all over again. My main takeaway from this movie was how inspiring his leadership and management style were. Steve Jobs ruled with an iron fist, and pushed perfection, innovation, and a whole lot of hard work. What he did ended up changing the lives of his employees and the rest of the world forever. I always get pumped after watching this movie.
Sneak Peak: https://youtu.be/w96oTapYTKk
Honorable mentions: Trading Places, Pursuit of Happyness, Margin Call, Enron, The Smartest Guys In The Room, Glengary Glen Ross, The Devil Wears Prada, Margin Call.
Now munch on snacks and get inspired!
Article written by Chris Okada, edited by Rosa Sanchez.