7.2/10
69,259
186 user 284 critic

The Founder (2016)

Trailer
1:01 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $4.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

The story of Ray Kroc, a salesman who turned two brothers' innovative fast food eatery, McDonald's, into the biggest restaurant business in the world, with a combination of ambition, persistence, and ruthlessness.

Director:

Writer:

(as Robert Siegel)
Reviews
Popularity
781 ( 52)
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The story of a team of female African-American mathematicians who served a vital role in NASA during the early years of the U.S. space program.

Director: Theodore Melfi
Stars: Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monáe
Patriots Day (2016)
Crime | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The story of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing and the aftermath, which includes the city-wide manhunt to find the terrorists responsible.

Director: Peter Berg
Stars: Mark Wahlberg, Michelle Monaghan, J.K. Simmons
Snowden (2016)
Biography | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The NSA's illegal surveillance techniques are leaked to the public by one of the agency's employees, Edward Snowden, in the form of thousands of classified documents distributed to the press.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Shailene Woodley, Melissa Leo
Lion (2016)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A five-year-old Indian boy gets lost on the streets of Calcutta, thousands of kilometers from home. He survives many challenges before being adopted by a couple in Australia. 25 years later, he sets out to find his lost family.

Director: Garth Davis
Stars: Dev Patel, Nicole Kidman, Rooney Mara
Gold I (2016)
Adventure | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Kenny Wells, a prospector desperate for a lucky break, teams up with a similarly eager geologist and sets off on a journey to find gold in the uncharted jungle of Indonesia.

Director: Stephen Gaghan
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Edgar Ramírez, Bryce Dallas Howard
War Dogs (2016)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Based on the true story of two young men, David Packouz and Efraim Diveroli, who won a $300 million contract from the Pentagon to arm America's allies in Afghanistan.

Director: Todd Phillips
Stars: Jonah Hill, Miles Teller, Steve Lantz
Jackie V (2016)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy fights through grief and trauma to regain her faith, console her children, and define her husband's historic legacy.

Director: Pablo Larraín
Stars: Natalie Portman, Peter Sarsgaard, Greta Gerwig
Sully (2016)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The story of Chesley Sullenberger, an American pilot who became a hero after landing his damaged plane on the Hudson River in order to save the flight's passengers and crew.

Director: Clint Eastwood
Stars: Tom Hanks, Aaron Eckhart, Laura Linney
Steve Jobs (2015)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Steve Jobs takes us behind the scenes of the digital revolution, to paint a portrait of the man at its epicenter. The story unfolds backstage at three iconic product launches, ending in 1998 with the unveiling of the iMac.

Director: Danny Boyle
Stars: Michael Fassbender, Kate Winslet, Seth Rogen
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

As a math savant uncooks the books for a new client, the Treasury Department closes in on his activities, and the body count starts to rise.

Director: Gavin O'Connor
Stars: Ben Affleck, Anna Kendrick, J.K. Simmons
The Nice Guys (2016)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

In 1970s Los Angeles, a mismatched pair of private eyes investigate a missing girl and the mysterious death of a porn star.

Director: Shane Black
Stars: Russell Crowe, Ryan Gosling, Angourie Rice
Pirates of Silicon Valley (TV Movie 1999)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

History of Apple and Microsoft.

Director: Martyn Burke
Stars: Anthony Michael Hall, Noah Wyle, Joey Slotnick
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Fred Turner
...
June Martino
...
Rollie Smith
...
Jim Zien
...
...
Jack Horford
...
...
Myra Rosenblatt
...
Owner (Ed's Drive-In)
Edit

Storyline

1954. Having worked as a salesman most of his adult life, Ray Kroc has been a hustler in most senses of the word. That hustling has made him the target of derision among certain circles for peddling what have ended up being more novelty or faddish than useful products, but it has also placed more than a comfortable roof in Arlington Heights, Illinois over his and his wife Ethel's heads. Ethel, however, wishes that he placed as much effort into being at home with her than he is in selling, his current job of peddling five-spindle milkshake makers for Prince Castle which has him constantly on the road going from one drive-in restaurant to another. It is because of the beefs he has with the whole drive-in experience (bad food, bad service) in constantly eating at such establishments while on the road that he becomes enthralled with the concept of McDonald's Restaurant in San Bernardino, California, it owned and operated by brothers Richard McDonald and Maurice McDonald - Dick and Mac. ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

You've had their food, but do you know their secrets? See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

| |  »

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 January 2017 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hambre de poder  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,404,102, 22 January 2017, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$12,785,093, 21 April 2017

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$21,945,747
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

| (archive footage)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Michael Keaton took piano lessons in preparation for the movie, after discovering the real Ray Kroc liked to play piano. See more »

Goofs

The first error that jumped out at me was the modern railroad crossing gates in the background of the "San Bernadino" scenes. In 1954, these absolutely did NOT exist. In 1954, many railroad crossings were simply signs ("crossbucks - in railroad parlance). Major railroad crossings in busy cities during this time were manned by a "crossing guard" - who came out of his watchman's shanty with a round black and white "stop" sign on a stick. It wasn't until the late 1960's and early 70's that the modern railroad crossing gates became the "norm". And it wasn't until the 1980's that the addition of the overhead "highway" red flashing lights at railroad crossings came into existence. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Ray Kroc: I know what you're thinkin'... What the heck do I need a 5-spindle for... when I barely sell enough milkshakes to justify my single-spindle. Right? Wrong. Are you familiar with the notion of the chicken or the egg Mr. Griffith, I mentioned... that there'd be costs. Well, I think it applies here. Do you not need the multimixer because, well heck, you're not selling enough milkshakes. Or are you not selling enough milkshakes because you don't have a multimixer? I firmly believe it's ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the opening/closing credits, the real Ray A Kroc is heard giving an interview about how he came to buy out McDonald's. See more »

Connections

Featured in Film '72: Episode #46.5 (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

In Spite of Everything
Written and performed by Larry Goldings
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A tale of treachery, greed and a code of ethics toxic enough to spoil a Big Mac.
26 November 2016 | by See all my reviews

Biographical dramas tell stories about significant people in history but they are always much more than that. The person chosen for the bio-pic reflects something about the values of the era and the society from which they came. In this sense, The Founder (2016) goes well beyond the story of a global hamburger empire to the values that made McDonald's possible and it does not paint a pretty picture. The mantra "persistence is everything" is heard at the beginning and the end of this film but when decoded it means persistent treachery, greed, and a code of ethics toxic enough to remove some gloss from the world's most recognised golden arches.

The real founders are brothers Maurice (John Lynch) and Richard McDonald (Nick Offerman) who pioneered the idea of standardised burgers made quickly that led to the modern fast-food industry. Into their lives came Ray Kroc (Michael Keaton), a struggling milkshake-mixer salesman who is amazed at the queues of people lined up for burgers and fries. The brothers trust Ray, tell him their secrets, and in 1954 Ray becomes the franchise manager responsible for setting up new stores. Driven by insatiable greed, Ray wants to go national but the brothers fear loss of quality control. When Ray realises that owning the property on which stores operate gives him complete control of the business, his takeover plans are rolled into place.

The storyline follows the facts of history but it is the film's characterisations that are its real achievement. Perhaps best known for his extraordinary performance in Birdman (2014) Michael Keaton is in a class of his own when it comes to portraying deeply flawed people living on the edge of sanity or evil. From the opening scenes his eyes express callous disregard for others, and at one point he boasts that if a competitor was drowning he would not hesitate to put a running hose deep down the victim's throat. His flawed humanity is contrasted by the authenticity and honesty represented by the brothers. Excellent casting, directing and period sets make this a thoroughly engaging story.

This film also arrives with remarkable timing given the current global spotlight on the home of capitalism. Millions of McDonald's fans are regularly processed by one of the most sophisticated marketing machines on the planet. Seeing The Founder is a bit like finding out that Santa Claus is Satan in disguise. Good cinema not only entertains: it shows the world as it is, not as we believe it should be. The Founder tells a story that should be told, and it does it brilliantly.


151 of 174 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?
Review this title | See all 186 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Watch the Latest Episode of "The IMDb Show"

Katee Sackhoff talks about her characters on "Battlestar Galactica," "Star Wars: Rebels," and "The Flash." Plus, "The IMDb Show" learns what it takes to wield a lightsaber.

Watch the show