WORKING GIRL (1988): The Things I Liked…

Working Girl (1988), Melanie Griffith
Working Girl (1988), Melanie Griffith

Directed by Mike Nichols, Working Girl stars Melanie Griffith, Harrison Ford and Sigourney Weaver. It’s a story about Tess McGill (Griffith), a secretary whose boss steals her big idea so she seizes the opportunity to take it back.

As the movie started, right away it was pretty clear to me that Working Girl was going to be ‘lifting’; a movie that left me happy and motivated. I knew this mainly because of the memorable Carly Simon song (‘Let The River Run’) in the opening sequence and the close shots of Lady Liberty.

Set in 1980s New York, there’s of course no escaping the big hair and shoulder pads. There’s also no getting away from the kind of sexism and office politics women were subjected to in the workplace at the time. It’s McGill’s navigation of these challenges as best she can that confirms why this film, though not perfect, it remains a favourite whilst having good re-watch value, particularly among the ladies. Nearly thirty years have passed since Working Girl was released and I’m glad to have finally seen it. It’s the sisterhood, especially towards the very end that happens to be my favourite thing and moment in this film. I also liked the movie’s depiction of what I recognised as ‘the power couple’.

One  thought that came to mind a few times as I watched is whether Melanie Griffith is really as softly spoken as her character. McGill is no ‘low talker,’ like in ‘The Puffy Shirt’ Seinfeld episode – but still… I wonder.

Happy Film Loving


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