Must Watch Business Movies for Entrepreneurs

Ashwini Ashwini
Mar 16, 2021 13 min read
Must Watch Business Movies for Entrepreneurs

What do you think makes an entrepreneur different from all other people ? More money, celebrity status symbol than any ordinary employee. Every other person earns, works hard but why is the skill of entrepreneurship regarded as smartest if successful and dumbest if a failure. Is it just these things which makes an entrepreneur?
What is it that drives an entrepreneur?

Well, apart from just the ability to start a business, risk for it and make money out of it, an entrepreneur has much more. If closely looked upon they are the most creative people, out of the box thinkers and keen observers. Not easily satisfied, entrepreneurs value new ideas and can be called the most unstable group of people in our society. Since they never settle for less, they lose a million times for an overnight stardom.
At times they too feel disheartened, rejected or disappointed but they come out of it with an even larger intensity than before, with a greater optimism than even. To keep up with this dream of yours to become a successful entrepreneur and tap your creative element in brains, we here have compiled a list of movies Hollywood as well as Bollywood for you to learn, grow and never give up.

Hollywood Business Movies
A. Crime/Business Genre
B. Comedy/Drama Genre
C. Sports Genre
Bollywood Business Movies

Hollywood Business Movies

A. Crime/Business Genre

1. The Godfather

IMDB rating: 9.2/10
Release date: 14 March 1972

"I'll make him an offer he can't refuse"

Successful business in one sentence. This movie is an inspiration to all the future leaders. It has not just one message but a number of them all which will directly move you. It focuses on the importance of relationships family, friends and even enemies. The movie makes young generation understand ethical as well as unethical means  to deal with situations which today or maybe tomorrow will definitely come in their way and they've to face them.

2. GoodFellas

IMDB rating: 8.7/10
Release date: 12 September 1990

If You're Part Of A Crew, Nobody Ever Tells You That They're Going To Kill You"

The 1990 drama-crime film discusses the mob life in New York and gives you a number of lessons too. Through the dirty drug business, average life it gives you. Some important lesson  which include not running away from work, value of words, promises and money. Also, it highlights the need for humor as a must requirement in order to live the good life. Laughing on mistakes, on situations makes them easier to deal with and if not at least you had a good laugh.

3. Fight Club

IMDB rating: 8.8/10
Release date: 21 September 1999

We buy things we don't need with the money we don't have to impress people we don't like.

This movie may not teach you any business lesson, but an important life lesson. The movie was a total flop at the time of it's release. However, people later realized the art of this movie. The movie depicts the life of a person who have everything, a good job, apartment, money, etc. But still struggles to be happy. He is going through many mental problems. Later, he meets a man who teach him how to live life. This movie tells us how mafia group born and what can happen if you are not happy with your life. The movie take an interesting turn at the end. It is full of mystery, you just don't realize it till the end.

4. The Godfather Trilogy

IMDB rating: 9.2/10
Release date: 14 March 1972

“I have learned more in the streets than in any class room.”

The Godfather Trilogy is possible the all-time best masterpiece of cinema for entrepreneurs. The movie highlights why relationships and building networks matter, why helping people lends itself to a good business and why understanding competition is very crucial. The movies are intensely entertaining and packed with thrilling, thought-provoking scenes that will surely leave you better prepared to handle your business challenges.

The movie addresses issues about competitive strategies, corporate take-overs, alliances, corporate succession and diversification that will result in success of your firm.

B. Comedy/Drama Genre

1. Wolf of Wall Street

IMDB rating: 8.2/10
Release date: 3 January 2014

"Work until your bank account looks like a phone number."

The Wolf of Wall Street is based on the true story of Jordan Belfort who was a millionaire stockbroker during his time. It follows through his rise and fall as an entrepreneur and showcases how his firm Stratton Oakmont was engaged in penny stock trading and became unexceptionally successful which drew the attention of the FBI as they suspected securities scam.

Jordan Belfort is an example of what an entrepreneur should not be. He was swayed by greed, driven by unethical practices, had little or no empathy towards people around him and spent too much time on drugs and alcohol – which eventually led to his downfall. There is also a scene in the movie which features Matthew McConaughey where he describes what it takes to be a stockbroker and is one of the best scenes in the movie.

2. The Pursuit of Happiness (2006)

IMDB rating: 8/10
Release date: 15 December 2006

"Don't let anyone tell you, that you can't do something"

This movie is very close to reality. It inspires you and tells you  that if you want to be "rags to riches" in real you have to go and get whatever you want. It shows struggles in ordinary life which a common man has to face from bad luck to rejection to hard work that goes in vain it has all. The honesty of this movie will make you realize the importance of struggle and the need of  patience in your way to success.

Read more: 7 ways to Keep Employees Happy

3. Jobs (2013)

IMDB rating: 7.2/10
Release date: 16 October 2015

"I’m not dismissing the value of higher education; I’m simply saying it comes at the expense of experience."

Michael Fassbender starring Steve Jobs is based on the life of Apple co-founder – Steve Jobs. The movie is a biopic with three sequences – all depicting a pivotal point in Steve’s life. He faces many problems in his personal and professional life while trying to launch three products in the market. It takes us behind the scenes of the digital revolution to paint an intimate portrait of the brilliantly talented man as its epicenter.

It is a great movie which is inspirational in its very essence – it shows how great ideas are not born through compromise but through vision and determination.

4. The Social Network (2010)

IMDB rating: 7.7/10
Release date: 12 November 2010

"Ideas have no value"

The movie is based upon Mark Zuckerberg the founder of facebook. It shows an 18 yr old old boy learning real business. He learns about the darker side of business when his idea is stolen. Protecting your ideas in the corporate world and planning for the worst is what an entrepreneur must always be ready for. Also that Ideas have no value, what matters is applying them in real world.

Read more: Success story of AppDynamics

5. Glengarry Glen Ross (1992)

IMDB rating: 7.7/10
Release date: 2 October 1992

"If everyone thinks one thing, then I say bet the other way."

Glengarry Glen Ross is based on an award winning play by David Mamet which shows the plight of real estate salespeople during a disruptive and turbulent sales season. The motivational speech given by Baldwin to the sales team is a moving scene in the film. The movie shows how it is like to function and operate in a high pressure sales atmosphere and how you need to use your wits in order to survive and thrive. It takes a closer look at the betrayals and lies people endure just to succeed in their field of business, and illustrates how vicious the business world can be.

6. Citizen Kane

IMDB rating: 8.3/10
Release date: 1 May 1941

"There is only one person in the world who is going to decide what I'm going to do and that's me."

Citizen Kane is a movie that even if you are not an entrepreneur, or an aspirant too, you should watch regardless as it is one of the masterpiece of cinema. The movie revolves around the life of Charles Foster Kane who is a newspaper tycoon, loosely based on William Randolph Hearst, and his quest for fortune, fame and power. But in the end Kane comes to realization and understands what is really important in life. It teaches one that while aspiring to be a successful businessman is a goal of every entrepreneur, it is not the only goal in life.

7. Catch Me If You Can

IMDB rating: 8.1/10
Release date: 25 December 2002

"Dear Dad, you always told me that an honest man has nothing to fear, so I'm trying my best not to be afraid."

Catch Me If You Can is based on a true story about the successful con artist Frank Abagnale who charms everyone with his skill mastery. The movies is a classic film that exemplifies the entrepreneurial journey. It covers important themes like creative problem solving, tuning something good out of a bad situation and good old hustle to reach the top, to reach success one desires.

You will learn many things from this movie – entrepreneurship skills, creativity and innovation, business vision, perseverance, personal sales techniques and funding sources. That should, of course, be done with ethical code of conduct.

8. Cocktail (1988)

IMDB rating: 5.9/10
Release date: 29 July 1988

"If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere"

The 1988 Tom Cruise starring film shows a bartender with high aspirations who reads books all the time. The story is a mix of drama and romance. It shows how valuable an idea is. An entrepreneur is not who works only if the things come out as per him and his ideal choices but is the one who can make his idea work anywhere. Even a bartender can then become a bar owner. And even a shopkeeper is an entrepreneur because he believes in his idea and in the best way can deliver it.

C. Sports Genre

1. Moneyball

IMDB rating: 7.6/10
Release date: 24 February 2012

“Hard work may not always end up in success but it will never end up in regret.”

This movie is based on baseball but is entertaining to all the demographics. Brad Pitt portrays Billy Beane who is the general manager of the Oakland A’s. The team is met with a deficit of finances to spend on player and Beane had to discover unique tactics to compete. He overcomes the odds stacked against his team. He decides to take the untested saber-metric approach towards building his team to achieve incredible results in the MLB (Major Baseball League).

Billy Bean had to adapt in order to survive. He had to take risks and make tough decisions to achieve good results. These circumstances and scenarios are what most startups face when they go against stiff competition from already established ventures. The movie showcases how success can be achieved through risk-taking and inventiveness.

2. Two for the Money

IMDB rating: 6.3/10
Release date: 7 October 2005

"Stats are not enough, you need a voice! These are gamblers ready to risk what they can't afford for what they can't have, you're selling the world's rarest commodity: certainty, in an uncertain world."

This movie is set in the world of Vegas Professional Football and the gambling world is just one of the places you will visit in the analysis of just how changes happen when things seem out of your control. Two for the Money starts Al Pacino and Matthew McConaughey in a cautionary, no-holds-barred tale about the destructive, shape-shifting power of addiction. It showcases that changes can be made by anybody if the motivation is there deep down. It is a great pick for new aspiring entrepreneurs out there.

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Bollywood Business Movies

1. Guru

IMDB rating: 7.8/10
Release date: 12 January 2007

"If you can imagine it, you can achieve it! If you can dream it, you can become it!"

The movie has the lead as Gurukant Desai who is courageous and knows his real worth. The character is inspired by the most successful entrepreneur of India Dhirubai Ambani. It has elements of weakness, cheating and struggles.
The most important lesson it has for the young entrepreneurs is self confidence. Do what you want to and  not what others want you to. Which is one of the key principle of any business. Being confident in your decisions and taking charge is what  entrepreneurship us all about.

2. Band Baaja Baaraat

IMDB rating: 7.2/10
Release date: 10 December 2010

"Let's first become the king of small budget weddings"

This movie was an interesting mixture of personal and professional scenarios and the importance of cooperation. The best message it delivers is that no work is small and to become large one day you have to first begin with small moves. The movie became an inspiration for event and wedding planners. Dedication to one customer at a time and taking good care of them creates reputation for a business and image is an important element of any startup. Loyalty, teamwork and innovation all come as a lesson in the film.

3. Corporate

IMDB rating: 6.5/10
Release date: 7 July 2006

When a single person's work ... is spoiled by 50 people together, sitting on a table ... that is called corporate.

The Bipasha Basu starrer movie is the only movie which strongly depicts the negative traits of the corporate life. Unethical means like stealing of contents and ideas by which businesses run are shown. The movie is a near to representation of how Asian businesses works. The question of morality and values is also raised in the movie.


IMDB rating: 7.7/10
Release year: 1976

This movie first came in 1976 and it has a setting in the rural India. The complications faced by the veterinary Dr. Rao in setting up a milk cooperative for the villagers which disturbs the socio economic condition of the village is shown. The hindi feature film becomes a great  and earliest example of entrepreneurship
In India. Depictions of gender problems, caste discriminations and lack of support are evident in this 1976, Girish Karnad and Smitha Patil starring film.

5. ROCKET SINGH - Salesman of the year

IMDB rating: 7.5/10
Release date: 11 December 2009

This movie though was not able to generate a lot of revenue but it is a must watch for any young entrepreneur. It discusses some of the most significant key elements of businesses. It has lessons of hard work which makes each one of us understand the value of knowledge  and aptitude and not just bookish degrees. The importance of learning willingly any kind if work. Providing the best quality services and satisfying customers is the necessary and most important goal of a business or startup.

Movies are depictions of real life only and there's a lot to learn from them. Some may inspire you  while some may make you think twice. All these movies have a spirit of entrepreneurship that a budding entrepreneur  who believes in  value entertainment will definitely relate to.


What are some of the best inspirational movies for entrepreneurs?

  • The Pursuit of Happiness (2006)
  • Jobs (2013)
  • The Social Network (2010)
  • ROCKET SINGH - Salesman of the year (2009)
  • Guru (2007)

Why is a movie like Rocket Singh a must-watch?

There are so many lessons that can be learnt from the movie-

  • Academic excellence does not dictate success.
  • Take failure and snide remarks in your stride, and let your actions do the talking.
  • Leaders are born in the most unusual of circumstances.
  • A humble leader who inspires his team to look ahead of the challenges -- a trait every entrepreneur must possess.

Which movies should entrepreneurs have to watch before creating a startup?

  • Moneyball
  • The Wolf of Wall Street
  • The Social Network
  • Glengarry Glen Ross
  • Rocket Singh- Salesman of the year
  • Band Baaja Baarat
  • Guru

Is the Indian movie Guru, featuring Abhishek Bachchan, based on a true story?

Guru was based on Dhirubai Ambani’s life. Dhirubai’s life was more inspirational than the movie. Dhirubai was no ordinary successful businessman from India. He had achieved unthinkable feats in his life. From being a young man working in a petrol pump in foreign land and later becoming the richest Indian.


Movies can inspire you, motivate you, and can help you give a kick start to your life. Also, it can give you a boost to your career. But when you come to reality all these movies will only be emotional support and energy booster. At the end of the day, you have to work hard to get the desired result. Keep striving, keep hustling, keep going. Believe in yourself. Put effort to get the desired result. Till then, keep reading such articles to know more about such interesting topics.

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