“Corporate drone Peter Gibbons (Ron Livingston) hates his soul-killing job at software company Initech. While undergoing hypnotherapy, Peter is left in a blissful state when his therapist dies in the middle of their session. He refuses to work overtime, plays games at his desk and unintentionally charms two consultants into putting him on the management fast-track. “
Office Space is an amazing film that depicts the monotony and sameness of cubicle-style desk job life in contemporary civilisation, dominated by dense-minded bureaucrats. Mike Judge’s exceptional directorial skills shine through this film, through his use of awkward dialogue which aids the movie in its dose of reality and authenticity. The film trails Peter Gibbons, played by Ron Livingston, as he gradually realises that he is unhappy with his employment. Because of his dissatisfaction, he decides to stop caring, and forfeits himself to free will, which seems to help him in his career rather than damaging it in an ironic fashion. This movie is remarkable as it illustrates the dullness of modern work life, while also bestowing a compelling alternative. Beneath the immediate surface of the film, Office Space presents thematic elements relating to morality and offers a critique of capitalism in the white-collar workplace. The protagonist (Peter) is mysteriously estranged from the work he is doing at his job, which is a theory formulated by Karl Marx that refers to the various facets of life dominated by social classes. Further evidence of these themes is evident through the notable quote halfway through the film, where Peter remarks to the employment consultants in the office, “I probably do about 15 minutes of work a day.” Despite saying this, his boss repeatedly requests him to come into work on weekends, hinting at the idea that his labor is valuable despite being essentially worthless with his work ethic. My main personal issue with the film is that it essentially starts the way it begins, with the only truly significant event occurring is the protagonist’s character development, however the film achieves what it originally set out to achieve.
In conclusion, the combination of these elements fuse together to illustrate a masterpiece and cult-classic by Mike Judge that holds an enduring relevance in contemporary society, as it can be constantly paralleled through a multitude of communities that engage in white-collar work. Judge’s articulate use of comedy throughout the film to satirise the everyday life of white-collar workers is done in astounding and perfect way through the utilisation of hyperbolic characters in the office that act as real-life caricatures of what people are likely to experience in an actual office space.
I would recommend this film to most people as it is a classic that must be viewed at least once. I would avoid recommending the movie to people who are less focused on the comedy genre or dialogue-based films, as the charm of the movie rests in the eloquently written script.