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Working Girl (1988)

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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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3,353 ( 166)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 8 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

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James Lally ...
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Bob Speck
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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.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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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)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Harrison Ford's first romantic comedy as star. See more »

Goofs

When Tess walks into to quit her job with Lutz, she is wearing all black. While storming out on him in the next shot, she is wearing blue. See more »

Quotes

[Looking through Katherine Parker's wardrobe]
Cynthia: Six thousand dollars? It's not even leather!
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Bob's Burgers: Work Hard or Die Trying, Girl (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm So Excited
Written by Anita Pointer, Ruth Pointer, June Pointer, and Trevor Lawrence
Performed by The Pointer Sisters
Courtesy of RCA Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Who's afraid of Sigourney Weaver?
28 April 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Working girl Tess McGill (Melanie Griffith, sporting some serious hair) is continuously being mistaken for a "coffee, tea or me?" kind of person when in fact she works hard, reads widely and studies nights to get ahead in the business world. But the sexist, class-conscious business world just won't take her seriously. Finally she hooks up with Katherine Parker (Sigourney Weaver), a successful but vulturous deal-maker with an elevated opinion of herself who knows how to use people. They set up a mentor relationship with Tess getting the coffee and Katherine spouting the words of wisdom. When Tess comes up with a good business idea, Katherine steals it.

Enter soon after Jack Trainer (Harrison Ford) and we have our triangle. Katherine has broken her leg skiing and Tess has to fill in for her. When Tess discovers that Katherine has ripped off her idea, she decides to assume Katherine's accouterments, including her lavish apartment, her wardrobe, her hairstyle, and as it turns out, her boyfriend. Will she succeed, and will she find true love and happiness with the leading man? Inquiring minds want to know.

Director Mike Nichols, auteur of a number of film land successes of more than average sophistication, including Postcards from the Edge (1990), The Graduate (1967), Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf (1966), etc. with help from screen writer Kevin Wade and Melanie herself, manages to create enough sympathy for Tess that we want her to win. Sigourney Weaver does such a fine job of being a kind of sociopathic villainess that we want her to lose.

Guess what happens?

While this is not on the same level as the three Mike Nichols flicks mentioned above, either in terms of cinematic significance or craftsmanship, it is clever and witty at times, and the story is one that most American women will find easy to identify with. And of course the winner gets Harrison Ford, displaying his usual bodice-busting charm. Only problem (aside from some smarmy pandering to a chick flick audience) is that the chemistry between Melanie Griffith and Harrison Ford is lacking.

See this for Mike Nichols whose direction here can be described as just a working guy trying to make a buck and not doing a bad job of it.

(Note: Over 500 of my movie reviews are now available in my book "Cut to the Chaise Lounge or I Can't Believe I Swallowed the Remote!" Get it at Amazon!)


11 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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I'm confused about the ski vacation details zyggums
Harrison as Jack? Attractive or unattractive? markbirdxxx
obvious, failed corporatism nbreyfogle-1
1988 must have been a slow year for cinema. vsaty001
Tess' Living Arrangements TheAcadian
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