7.0/10
79,602
417 user 171 critic

Secretary (2002)

Trailer
0:59 | Trailer
A young woman, recently released from a mental hospital, gets a job as a secretary to a demanding lawyer, where their employer-employee relationship turns into a sexual, sadomasochistic one.

Director:

Steven Shainberg

Writers:

Erin Cressida Wilson (screenplay), Mary Gaitskill (short story) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
Popularity
837 ( 42)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 15 wins & 25 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Sherrybaby (2006)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Sherry tries to integrate again into society and become a good mother.

Director: Laurie Collyer
Stars: Maggie Gyllenhaal, Ryan Simpkins, Sam Bottoms
White Palace (1990)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Still getting over the death of his wife, a young advertising executive meets an older waitress, a woman that might set him free.

Director: Luis Mandoki
Stars: Susan Sarandon, James Spader, Jason Alexander
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A sexually repressed woman's husband is having an affair with her sister. The arrival of a visitor with a rather unusual fetish changes everything.

Director: Steven Soderbergh
Stars: James Spader, Andie MacDowell, Peter Gallagher
Dream Lover (1993)
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A successful businessman tries to uncover what is wrong with his wife.

Director: Nicholas Kazan
Stars: James Spader, Mädchen Amick, Fredric Lehne
The Secretary (TV Movie 1995)
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

Disgruntled secretary Deidre turns to murder and blackmail after being turned down for promotion.

Director: Andrew Lane
Stars: Mel Harris, Sheila Kelley, Barry Bostwick
Crash (1996)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

After getting into a serious car accident, a TV director discovers an underground sub-culture of scarred, omnisexual car-crash victims who use car accidents and the raw sexual energy they produce to try to rejuvenate his sex life with his wife.

Director: David Cronenberg
Stars: James Spader, Holly Hunter, Elias Koteas
The Dreamers (2003)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A young American studying in Paris in 1968 strikes up a friendship with a French brother and sister. Set against the background of the '68 Paris student riots.

Director: Bernardo Bertolucci
Stars: Michael Pitt, Louis Garrel, Eva Green
9½ Weeks (1986)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A woman becomes involved with a man she barely knows. Complications develop during their sexual escapades.

Director: Adrian Lyne
Stars: Mickey Rourke, Kim Basinger, Margaret Whitton
Drama | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

A woman faces deadly consequences for abandoning her loving relationship with her boyfriend to pursue exciting sexual scenarios with a mysterious celebrity mountaineer.

Director: Kaige Chen
Stars: Heather Graham, Joseph Fiennes, Natascha McElhone
Lolita (1997)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A man marries his landlady so he can take advantage of her daughter.

Director: Adrian Lyne
Stars: Jeremy Irons, Dominique Swain, Melanie Griffith
Ghost World (2001)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

With only the plan of moving in together after high school, two unusually devious friends seek direction in life. As a mere gag, they respond to a man's newspaper ad for a date, only to find it will greatly complicate their lives.

Director: Terry Zwigoff
Stars: Steve Buscemi, Thora Birch, Scarlett Johansson
Shame (2011)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A sex addict's carefully cultivated private life falls apart after his sister arrives for an indefinite stay.

Director: Steve McQueen
Stars: Michael Fassbender, Carey Mulligan, James Badge Dale
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Spader ... Mr. Grey
Maggie Gyllenhaal ... Lee Holloway
Jeremy Davies ... Peter
Lesley Ann Warren ... Joan Holloway
Stephen McHattie ... Burt Holloway
Patrick Bauchau ... Dr. Twardon
Jessica Tuck ... Tricia O'Connor
Oz Perkins ... Jonathan
Amy Locane ... Lee's Sister
Mary Joy ... Sylvia
Michael Mantell ... Stewart
Lily Knight Lily Knight ... Paralegal
Sabrina Grdevich ... Allison
Lacey Kohl Lacey Kohl ... Louisa
Julene Renee ... Jessica
Edit

Storyline

An emotionally fragile woman recently released from a mental hospital for self mutilation goes to school to gain secretarial skills to gain employment. She has an alcoholic father and a co-dependent mother who are clueless as to who she really is which a tormented soul who really wants to find something with which she can find success. She is a great secretary and finds a job with a unique, old fashioned, but off center in charge boss with a somewhat sadistic sexual proclivity. She grows and evolves and so does he. Written by kateann1027

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Assume the position. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexuality, some nudity, depiction of behavioral disorders, and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 October 2002 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Secretary See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$182,306, 22 September 2002

Gross USA:

$4,059,680

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$9,304,609
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Erin Cressida Wilson: In Mr. Grey's waiting room, where there are three people waiting to see him, one of them is played by the film's screenwriter. See more »

Goofs

The classified ad at the beginning of the film indicated Grey's office street number was 2640, but a letter that Lee hand-addresses to him later in the film shows a street number of 2540. This may have been an intentional mistake on her part as she had been making mistakes on purpose for several days trying to get Grey to punish her. Besides that, why would she put the office address on an envelope for Grey that she is preparing in his office and thus is not something she'll need to mail? (She did not include her return address on the envelope) See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Lee: [narrating] I got out of the institution on the day of my sister's wedding. I had started to get used to the place. Breakfast at 8:00, classes at 2:00. Therapy at 4:00, and asleep by 10:00.
Dr. Twardon: [Lee's doctor says goodbye] You can call me any time, Lee. I will always try to be of help to you.
Lee: [narrating] Inside, life was simple.
Lee: [Lee hugs her doctor] Thank you, Dr. Twardon.
Lee: [narrating] For that reason, I was reluctant to go.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The legal disclaimer has typing errors:
  • "fictitious" is misspelled "ficticious"
  • "unintentional" is misspelled "unitentional"
  • unauthorized use of the film is warned as resulting in "civil liberty" instead of "civil liability"
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Be Kind Rewind (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Directly from My Heart to You
Performed by Little Richard
Written by Little Richard (as Richard W. Penniman)
Courtesy of Virgin Records America, Inc./Ace Records Ltd./Blues Interactions, Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Very original
17 April 2004 | by rbverhoefSee all my reviews

'Secretary' deals with a daring and original subject and does this in an effective and funny way. Its subject is sadomasochism, its genre is a romantic comedy. The secretary is Lee Holloway (Maggie Gyllenhaal), who suffers from self-mutilation, her boss is Mr. Grey (James Spader), who seems the coldest man alive. When they are in the same room you feel that there is something there, they both feel it too. Since the movie opens with a certain S/M scene we already know that there is a point in the movie where the two must find each other and start the sadomasochism activities. I will not reveal how and when it happens, but the moment is great.

Saying too much about the story would spoil things. We laugh at the right times, which is a good thing. Considering the subject it is even hard to accomplish that since people who are not familiar with it laugh very easy when they see strange things. For most audiences the events will be strange. The original approach of the movie, the performances perfect for this movie, the funny moments and an ending that plays exactly as it should this is a good movie and one of the most original romantic comedies I have seen.


87 of 108 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 417 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series



Recently Viewed