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10 Must-Watch Best Entrepreneur Movies (Movie Story + Lessons)

Best Entrepreneur Movies

Lights, camera, entrepreneurship! In the fast-paced world of business- innovation and creativity are the rulers. Entrepreneurs, being knowledge hunters, are always on the lookout for knowledge, preparing themselves for the challenges that can come.

Entrepreneur movies, books, and seminars have long been the biggest sources of knowledge. But what is the best source among these?

If you ask me, one of the best sources of value and entertainment is movies based on entrepreneurship.

As a platform, which is dedicated to promoting the Indian startup ecosystem, The StartupLab has prepared a list of 10 films that highlight the art of entrepreneurship. The list of top entrepreneurial movies starts with:

1. The Big Short 

One of the highly-rated movies made on the financial crisis, The Big Short is based on the sequence of events that led to the 2008 crisis. 

The director skillfully managed to narrate the story by following a group of investors who predicted the housing market collapse and managed to gain profit from it.

The movie highlights how amidst the collapse of American housing, a group of investors by thinking unconventionally and displaying bravery, made money when everything was going down. It offers a perspective that an entrepreneur who is well-informed about market trends, analyzes data rigorously, and challenges prevailing wisdom can seize opportunities when they appear.

Cast Performance, IMDb Ranking, and Awards: 

The Big Short boasts a terrific cast, including Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, and Brad Pitt, who have done justice to their roles, looking like real-life entrepreneurs.

With a pretty solid IMDb rating of 7.8/10, movie lovers still enjoy this movie. Renowned for its captivating storytelling and among a few movies that captured financial nuances well, “The Big Short” was honored with one Oscar and one Golden Globe.

Why Watch:

“The Big Short” vividly portrays how analytical thinking, risk assessment, and the courage to act on one’s convictions can drive success in times of financial turmoil.

Best Scene:

One scene in “The Big Short” depicts intense discussions among the main characters as they grapple with the impending financial collapse. 

The director has aptly brought the tension in the scene, showing unwavering conviction by each character to challenge the prevailing norms.

Lessons for Entrepreneurs:

Like the protagonists, if you have done your research, be ready to challenge existing norms and systems in your industry. Stay ethical, keep things simple for your clients, and remember: no matter how stable things look, always be ready for a curveball.

2. The Social Network:

Many of you know Mark Zuckerberg as the entrepreneur who built  Facebook, now meta, but very few know what he did to turn it into a billion-dollar company.

The Social Network takes the audience into the initial journey of Facebook. David Fincher, the movie director, succeeds not only in entertaining the masses, but by taking the audience deep into the legal altercations, and intricate relationships Zuckerberg faced during his rise to fame.

Cast Performance, IMDb Ranking, and Awards: 

The performances in “The Social Network” are commendable, with Jesse Eisenberg delivering a portrayal of Mark Zuckerberg. Other cast members, which include Spiderman fame, Andrew Garfield, and Justin Timberlake, also did justice to their roles.

The movie has an IMDb rating of 7.7/10, ranking it among the top entrepreneurial movies of all time. And being awarded with three Oscars and four Golden Globes highlights that The Social Network is worth every minute of your viewing time.

Why Watch:

Its gripping depiction of cutthroat competition within the tech industry will keep you glued to the screen. Unlike other movies in this genre, it picturizes every side of human emotion.

Best Scenes:

One of the moments in this film is the iconic courtroom scene where Mark Zuckerberg confronts his accusers. Parallelly, it spotlights Zuckerberg’s will to not give up, even when faced with challenges.

Lessons for Entrepreneurs:

When embarking on the business journey it’s essential for entrepreneurs to embrace innovation. However important is placing an emphasis on integrity and empathy throughout the process.

By upholding values of integrity and empathy you can establish trust and loyalty – elements, for achieving long-term entrepreneurial success.

3. The Aviator:

Ever seen someone who could do multiple things at the top level? If not, meet – Howard Hughes, a pioneer in aviation and filmmaking. 

The Aviator movie showcases the achievements and struggles of Hughes, a pioneer of his time, and a man of numerous talents. 

It did justice to Hughes’s life as it beautifully narrates his good and bad times while highlighting his determination to overcome obstacles.

Cast Performance, IMDb Ranking, and Awards: 

The performance by Leonardo DiCaprio in portraying Howard Hughes received acclaim, showcasing his ability to capture the essence of this enigmatic aviation pioneer.

This gem from the past has an IMDb rating of 7.5/10, garnering 5 Oscars and 3 Golden Globes, solidifying its place among the biographical films.

Why Watch:

If you ask me, it immerses you to witness firsthand the audacity and perseverance Hughes had to successfully navigate the worlds of aviation and filmmaking. It successfully highlights that passion, innovation, and resilience play for entrepreneurs venturing into uncharted territories.

Best Scenes:

One scene that stands out in the movie is when Howard Hughes fearlessly test flies the H1 Racer—a truly exhilarating moment that captures his unwavering spirit.

The movie not only highlights the drive of entrepreneurs to do the unthinkable but also shows their passion for exploring uncharted territories and striving for groundbreaking achievements.

Lessons for Entrepreneurs:

Hughes had two things in him-Passion and perseverance- the two non-negotiable qualities for any entrepreneur. As an entrepreneur, don’t be afraid to back your vision. How challenging things may get, be ready to confront obstacles head-on.

4. Pirates of Silicon Valley:

Want to know how current tech giants- Microsoft and Apple started? Then watch this movie. With a back-and-forth narration switching, Pirates of Silicon Valley focuses on the rivalry between tech titans Steve Jobs and Bill Gates.

The film narrates how Jobs and Gates defied norms at a young age, driving technology to what we see it now. To the modern-day entrepreneur, this movie will bring nostalgia.

Cast Performance, IMDb Ranking, and Awards: 

When it comes to the performances, recognition, and accolades received for their roles both Noah Wyle’s portrayal of Steve Jobs and Anthony Michael Hall’s depiction of Bill Gates were highly praised.

The actors have played their part truly well. Rare of its kind, Pirates of Silicon Valley has an IMDb rating of 7.2/10.  It was even nominated for 5 Primetime Emmys. 

Why Watch:

Don’t even get me started on why to watch this film. If you are a fan of either of the two, then grab your popcorn, sit back, and watch it. If not, just see it as an entrepreneur, to get glimpses of the vision and determination displayed by Jobs and Gates.

Best Scenes:

Amongst various amazing scenes in the movie, one that stands out is when Steve Jobs unveils the first Macintosh computer during an Apple shareholder meeting. 

Lessons For Entrepreneurs:

What made Jobs a successful entrepreneur was his open-minded approach to new ideas. Thinking differently was his forte and this quality can pave the way for groundbreaking innovations that can set you apart from your competitors.

5. Rocket Singh: Salesman Of The Year

It is one of the two Bollywood films that made it to this list and follows the journey of Harpreet Singh Bedi, an ambitious salesman.

Harpreet, an academically below-average student, aspires to make a mark in the competitive corporate world. 

Showing the art of sales, the movie takes you through the challenges of entrepreneurship within sales.

It builds on highlighting business ethics and how Harpreet overcomes them.

Cast Performance, IMDb Ranking:

“Rocket Singh: Salesman Of The Year” garnered praise for its storyline and Ranbir Kapoor’s exceptional portrayal of Harpreet Singh Bedi. The movie, which has an IMDb rating of 7.7/10, is regarded as one of Kapoor’s career best performances.

Why Watch:

As one of two Bollywood films on the list, “Rocket Singh; Salesman Of The Year” provides a perspective on entrepreneurship and sales. Moving around sales, which is a very crucial part of any business, the film offers lessons for aspiring entrepreneurs.

Best Scenes:

“Rocket Singh” is filled with charming moments, especially those depicting Harpreet’s interactions with clients and his team. Take it from me, you will surely love these scenes as they show the power of empathy and genuine care toward customers.

Lessons for Entrepreneurs:

If you are into sales or business, Harpreet’s character will inspire you to change your approach to customers. It teaches aspiring entrepreneurs important values such as maintaining integrity and cultivating strong relationships with customers.

6. Moneyball 

Not just a basic sports movie, Moneyball explores how Billy Beane revolutionizes baseball by using analysis to build a team, that too on a limited budget. 

Bringing data science and sports science to the forefront, the movie highlights how Beane’s newly introduced analytical approach changed the trajectory of their team.

As an entrepreneur, the lessons you can get from the movie are leveraging industry insights to gain an advantage. 

Cast Performance, IMDb Ranking, and Awards:

Trust me, what makes Moneyball a must-watch is Pitt’s portrayal of Billy Beane and Jonah Hill’s performance as his analyst. Because of the fresh writing and screenplay, the movie earned six Oscar nominations and has an IMDb rating of 7.6/10.

Why Watch:

There’s a saying, data is the new oil. And if you are a tech entrepreneur, Moneyball will leave you amazed. Not just in business, but data-driven decision-making can revolutionize industries and challenge existing wisdom. It promotes entrepreneurs to embrace insights, think outside the box, and gain an edge.

Best Scene:

One standout scene in “Moneyball” is when Billy Beane engages in discussions with his team of analysts about their strategy. The scene beautifully captures the significance of creative thinking and being open to questioning established beliefs to succeed in industries. 

Lessons for Entrepreneurs:

“Moneyball” brings to the limelight the power of data. It is because of data-centric strategies that Asian Paints became the market leader in its industry. 

Be open to integrating new approaches and use data in your favour.

7. The Founder:

Have you heard of Ray Kroc? If not, then grab your popcorn as he is the man behind the global expansion of McDonald’s from a small fast-food restaurant to an iconic international brand. 

Kroc’s journey showcases not always you will have success in your early days. And what increases your possibility to succeed in business and life is pushing through failures. It emphasizes the significance of recognizing the potential of existing ideas and transforming them into global phenomena.

Cast Performance, IMDb Ranking, and Awards:

Michael Keaton’s portrayal of Ray Kroc earned critical acclaim, capturing the essence of the ambitious entrepreneur. With a 7.2/10 IMDb rating, the film reflects its impact on viewers. 

While the movie team didn’t take any major awards home, “The Founder” was praised for its compelling storytelling and strong performances.

Why Watch:

If you have been struggling to find success, take a switch from your normal routine and watch this movie. By learning from a fellow entrepreneur, you can change your life as Kroc’s did.

Best Scene:

In “The Founder,” the best scene is when Ray Kroc persuades the McDonald brothers to franchise their restaurant. 

The picturization of the scene immerses the audience in a gripping back-and-forth conversation, while Kroc’s persuasive abilities and determination that turned a small local business in America into a global giant steal the show

Lessons for Entrepreneurs:

If you ask me, the character of Kroc displays persistence and the ability to adapt to changing circumstances. You can enhance what’s lagging in you by observing his behavior amid challenges.

Amidst challenges in your own entrepreneurial journey, you can take inspiration from Kroc and persevere.

8. Guru

Not the usual kind of movie that Bollywood makes, Guru is a compelling Bollywood biographical drama, loosely based on the life of iconic Indian entrepreneur and founder of Reliance Industries Dhirubhai Ambani.

While having layers of Bollywood-style masala movies, this Abhishek-Aishwarya starrer movie keeps you glued to Guru’s entrepreneurial journey. His ability to take on challenges keeps you entertained while dropping key business lessons. 

Cast Performance and IMDb Ranking:

This gem from Bollywood has an IMDb rating of 7.7/10 and received widespread acclaim for its powerful storytelling and Abhishek Bachchan’s outstanding portrayal of Gurukant Desai.

Every actor did justice to their role and Mani Ratnam gripped the audience with his engaging direction. 

Why Watch:

Guru delivers an engaging portrayal of entrepreneurship and business, which is something hard to find in Bollywood movies. Take it from me, Guru’s tenacity and ambition will force you to work on your goals.

Best Scenes:

Guru’s best scenes include the protagonist’s fiery speeches, strategic business negotiations, and his journey from a small village to the pinnacle of success. Goosebump moments for many, these moments showcase the entrepreneurial spirit of Guru and his relentless pursuit of his dreams.

Lessons for Entrepreneurs:

If you are into self-improvement, the movie is a treasure box. Witnessing Guru growing, you learn about the power of resilience, innovation, and strategic thinking. You will be a different person altogether if you keep your learning side open.

9. Steve Jobs:

If visionary thinking is your thing, you will love this movie. Steve Jobs, a biographical drama, beautifully shows the vision, creativity, and relentless pursuit of excellence Jobs had. 

The Michael Fassbender starrer puts forward the narrative that revolutionary products have the power to disrupt entire industries and displays the importance of focusing on customer needs when innovating,

Steve Jobs, a ruthless businessman inspires entrepreneurs to focus on delivering exceptional user experiences and staying true to their vision.

Cast Performance, IMDb Ranking, and Awards:

Michael Fassbender’s portrayal of Steve Jobs received critical acclaim, capturing the complexities of the enigmatic tech pioneer. With an IMDb rating of 7.2/10, the movie earned 2 Oscars and 4 Golden Globes nominations.

Why Watch: 

Jobs was much more than the man who built Apple. If you want to witness what went on in the life of the visionary mind that changed the status quo through his company, this movie is for you. 

Best Scenes:

One of the standout scenes in “Steve Jobs” is during his product launches, where he showcases the latest Apple products with unmatched showmanship. 

How he used storytelling and captivated the audience with presentations, is the main takeaway of the scene. 

Lessons for Entrepreneurs

I would not be exaggerating if I say it’s not just a film; it’s a masterclass in leadership. As an entrepreneur, you will also get to know what it takes to build a company and the sacrifices you have to make as a founder.

10. Catch Me If You Can:

This biographical crime film narrates the story of Frank Abagnale, a fraudster who puts on different identities and skillfully forges millions of dollars. Not the conventional kind of entrepreneurial movie you may want to watch, Catch Me If You Can offers insights into adaptability, charm, and the art of persuasion.

The protagonist’s ability to think quickly and navigate various situations demonstrates the importance of resilience and adaptability which entrepreneurs can learn.

Cast Performance, IMDb Ranking, and Awards:

Regarding the cast performance, Leonardo DiCaprio’s portrayal of Frank Abagnale received acclaim as he perfectly captured the charm and cleverness of the con artist.

Renowned for its captivating storytelling, Catch Me If You Can was nominated for 2 Oscars and 2 Golden Globes and has an IMDb rating of 8.1/10.

Why Watch:

Well if you’re interested in discovering the power of persuasion and resourcefulness this movie is a must-watch. This Leonardo starrer movie will keep your eyes glued to the screen as it is filled with several gripping scenes. 

Best Scene:

One of the most memorable scenes is when Frank Abagnale impersonates a Pan Am pilot. Not only does the scene emphasize Abagnale’s charm, but also his quick thinking that will leave you in awe of Leonardo’s acting. 

If self-improvement is your thing, grab the popcorn and watch the film. I would suggest watching the movie to understand the significance of adaptability and thinking creatively as these are qualities for entrepreneurs who succeed in business.

Lessons for Entrepreneurs:

The film, although all-in-all not a pure entrepreneur movie, offers insights on being adaptable and thinking creatively. I have got to say that a lesson you can learn from this movie is to be resourceful and agile in overcoming obstacles and finding creative solutions.

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