If i may, please allow me to introduce you to three blue-collar software developers, whom work in a software house called 'Infotec'. Now there's the one with the unfortunate name, called Michael Bolton (David Herman), then there's the one with the hard to pronounce name, called Samir Nagheenanajar (Ajay Naidu), plus there's the one whose name is pretty pedestrian really, called Peter Gibbson (Ron Livingston).
Please note, though, where Michael and Samir are both fairly secure in their jobs, Peter on the other hand hates his job, he hates his relationship with his girlfriend, and on top of that, he also hates’ his life as well.
So what does Peter do about it? Go to a head-shrink to cure him of this troubles? Yes - yes he does. However, during hypnosis, something goes very astray with Peter indeed. Well, so astray in fact, that he girlfriend leaves him, he befriends a nice waitress called Joanna (Jennifer Aniston), and he starts to develop a rather lapse work ethic as well.
OK, so what do I mean by 'lapse work ethic', huh? Well, Peter starts to express himself in a very relaxed manner indeed, and begins to defy his boss, Bill Lumbergh (Gary Cole), by being more ‘care free’ with his attitude at 'Infotec'. This becomes even more apparent when Peter is called in to be assessed by two corporate consultants – Bob and Bob – whom take on board what he has to say about his role in this company, but instead of penalizing him for it, they promote him before they ‘cut back’ on other member of staff within his department – most notably, Michael and Samir.
Now obviously feeling somewhat deterred by this turn of events, Peter, Samir, and Michael, plot there revenge against 'Infotec', by subjecting their computer system with a virus that profits their pockets in a very gradual manner.
Good plan, right? Err - no - not really, because this works out a little too well for them I am afraid to say, and they steal a little too much for this scheme to go un-noticed. Worst still, is that Peter finds out that his gal-pal, Joanna, slept with his boss, Lumbergh, a couple of years ago!
But how does Peter react to this news about Joanna you may ask? Plus what do the guys do about the pilfered money? Well – in both cases – badly all in all. Resulting in a roller-coaster ride of downs and ups, and acceptance and fire, in which... oh yes! I almost forgot to mention poor old Milton (Stephen Root), haven't I?
You see, during this tale, Milton has also been treated unfairly by his bosses at 'Infotec' as well, making this bumbling stuttering simpleton of a man, to be shoved from pillar to post, and treated rather unfairly. But at that end of the day – thanks to Milton’s accident prone nature – this all works out well for him, plus Michael, Samir, and Peter, too.
'Office Space' is a really neat film. It’s basically a character piece based in a mundane office environment, which allows for the story to work its way through an amalgamation of ‘set-pieces’ that provides the uniform whole. Honestly, it is a very fun film to watch - because it ‘takes the Mick’ out of ‘management’ and the general ‘monotonous work-day existence’, via the jaded outlook of the main protagonist, Peter, Ron Livingston character.
Personally speaking, I find that it is in a very similar vein to the Milton cartoon in which is was adapted from – except that in the case of the film, Milton is more of a subsidiary character to the rest. Listen, I am not trying to say that he is forgotten within this film, oh no. Though he does acts more like a plot device where the overall story is concerned, which is OK. Well, the director of this film, Mike Judge, is the creator of 'Milton' you see. Here, have a look at a piece of his work...
Now I can understand that this movie could be perceives as an acquired taste to some people. But for me, I found it rather relevant to the times in which we live in. 'Office Space' asks everyday questions that we all probably have within our lives – except it additionally overlays these questions within a 90 minute story-line involving programmers and duplicity, set within a pastel colored narrative.
The cast are all great as well – Jen, Ron, David, and Ajay – because they all behave quite boldly whilst at the same time quite naturally to boot. OK, the main exception to all of this is Bill Cole’s character, Lumbergh, and Stephen Root’s character, Milton. But strangely enough, this does not seem untoward within the world that these characters inhabit. In fact, if anything, they strangely seem to enhance it.
Here, have a look at some of these filmic facts to see what I mean: (1) Although this flick got writer / director, Mike Judge, quite a lot of notoriety on video, he doubts that there will be a sequel, because of the poor box office turn-out. (2) The virus that the guys deployed in this film was stored on the directory "C:/LR427/Virus_CDEF". CDEF was a harmless nineties virus which effected the Mac. (3) The restaurant where Jennifer's character work in 'Chotchkie's', is a spoof based on the popular 'T.G.I. Fridays' chain of eating establishments. (4) The complex where Peter lives, 'Morningwood Apartments', is a reference to Mikes Judge's other cartoon project 'Beavis and Butt-Head'. (5) Due to Milton's 'famous red stapler', as seen in this film, sales of red staplers increased all over America. (6) This film began life as a animated short shown on Saturday Night Live, where Lumberg tells Milton to movie his desk and takes his stapler, provoking Milton to burn down his office in turn. And (7) Jennifer Aniston's middle name is Joanna, like the first name of the character she plays in this movie.
Overall, 'Office Space' is a very funny, nice, and quirky comedy to watch. So if you are a fan of either 'The Office' 'King of the Hill', or 'The American Office', give it a punt, as I am sure that you will defiantly find it a really great piece of cinema.
It’s mumbling good!
THE RATING: A