When a secretary's idea is stolen by her boss, she seizes an opportunity to steal it back by pretending she has her boss' job.

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 8 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Cyn
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James Lally ...
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Bob Speck
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Elizabeth Whitcraft ...
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Storyline

Tess McGill is a frustrated secretary, struggling to forge ahead in the world of big business in New York. She gets her chance when her boss breaks her leg on a skiing holiday. McGill takes advantage of her absence to push ahead with her career. She teams up with investment broker Jack Trainer to work on a big deal. The situation is complicated after the return of her boss. Written by Sami Al-Taher <staher2000@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

For anyone who's ever won. For anyone who's ever lost. And for everyone who's still in there trying.

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Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

21 December 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Secretaria ejecutiva  »

Box Office

Budget:

$28,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$64,000,000 (USA)
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Company Credits

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Harrison Ford got his famous scar by crashing into a pole on Laguna Canyon Road in Laguna Beach, CA. He was a player at the Laguna Playhouse at the time and got a "rush stitch job" at South Coast Hospital in Laguna Beach. In the movie, his character says that he was piercing his ear as a teen, and fainted and hit his chin on the toilet. See also: Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989). See more »

Goofs

When Catherine is getting off of the helicopter, she first is waving from it and the blades are still spinning. Then when Tess goes to help her out of the helicopter the blades have stopped spinning. (There is no way that they would have stopped so fast.) See more »

Quotes

Personnel Director: Tess, Tess, Tess, Tess. You don't get ahead in this world by calling your boss a pimp.
Tess McGill: Well, he is.
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Connections

Featured in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #19.18 (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

St. Thomas
Written by Sonny Rollins
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User Reviews

 
Bright, feel-good comedy...George Cukor - move over!
10 September 2007 | by (NYC) – See all my reviews

It's up there with any of screwball comedies of the 30s... Carole Lombard, Jean Arthur, Margaret Sullivan. a modern classic...and that's not hyperbole!

I've been watching this movie every now and again for almost 20 years (ye gads!), and it's always entertaining. Tonight, I noticed how effective and subtle an actress Melanie Griffith can be when she's directed well. She's a real jewel in this film. Sweet, sexy, smart with a "brain for business and a bod for sin". Mike Nichols clearly loved filming her. Her expressions are priceless. Watch for the wonderful scene when Harrison Ford and she are walking to the elevator and he's asking her out. That face of hers as the elevator doors close is just heavenly. That's Mike Nichols craft/artistry.

Sigourney Weaver also does a masterful job as a two-faced shark business woman. What's so wonderful about her character, the writing, is that Katherine doesn't have a conscience. She's crafty and slick and manipulative, but she's not out to hurt anyone, just put herself first. It's too bad if anyone get's in her way. She's not nasty, but there is no question that she is the most important person in the universe. It's interesting, too, how her duplicity is reflected in her wardrobe. Most of the professional women in the movie are dressed in ultra-conservative boxy business attire, but Katherine/Sigourney dresses sophisticatedly and elegantly. She knows how to play both sides, the professional yet still sexy professional. She's so powerful in herself that she doesn't feel like she has to dress like a man just because she's in a male- dominated career (mergers/acquisitions). yes, she's a monster/ogre, but as she states, "This is BUSINESS".

Harrison Ford is his usual witty, slightly befuddled nice guy. He's the James Stewart of the baby boomer generation.

Joan Cusack is a phenomenon with her iridescent eye-shadow and Bozo hairdo. I think has the funniest line in the movie-a warning to Tess: "You know, sometimes I sing and dance around the apartment in my underwear. Doesn't make me Madonna....never will". that's rich.

Look for Ricki Lake at the wedding.

I put this movie in the same category as Moonstruck, Educating Rita, Shirley Valentine. Transformation movies. I suppose you could call them modern day Cinderella Stories, but it's more about the women saving themselves as opposed to waiting for Prince Charming.

It's a pleasure to see this movie. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.


35 of 44 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Hair radargirl-1
Tess' crappy office? markbirdxxx
Harrison as Jack? Attractive or unattractive? markbirdxxx
are you kidding me???! mooVluver
obvious, failed corporatism nbreyfogle-1
Was this a wardrobe mistake or was it meant to be? markbirdxxx
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