10 Money Lessons I Learned From the Movies
|July 11, 2008||Posted by Roshawn Watson under Uncategorized|
By: Roshawn Watson
As a self-proclaimed movie buff, here are 10 financial lessons I observed from eight of my favorite movies.
Thomas Crown Affair. First money lesson learned: You can be miserable with plenty of money. Thomas Crown had a beautiful NYC mansion, plenty of cash, successful companies to run, among other things. Nonetheless, he was miserable. In his boredom, he bet $100,000 on a golf swing, wrecked an expensive sail boat because he liked the splash, and stole a $100 million dollar Monet painting for the thrill. It was not until he found love, what money cannot buy, that he found happiness.
Pursuit of Happyness. Second money lesson learned: Profound lack of money can drive you to the depths of despair. When selling medical equipment did not work out, Chris Gardner loss his apartment, slept in the homeless shelter, and even had to sleep in a public restroom with his son. Third money lesson learned: investigate every business opportunity thoroughly. He would have never been in that dire financial predicament if he would not have naively started selling the medical equipment in the first place. Due diligence might have prevented numerous hardships in his life. Fourth money lesson learned: Tenacity and skill make a superb combination. Chris Garner was so passionate about obtaining a job from the stock brokerage firm that he networked to land major accounts and performed exceptionally well on his exam despite extreme personal challenges.
The Italian Job. Fifth Money Lesson Learned: the love of money is the root of all evil. Steve (Edward Norton) ended up killing the beloved John Bridger (Donald Sutherland) and ruining his relationships will all his “friends” because he wanted a larger piece of the loot. Although he DID get the money, he was alone, scared, and paranoid. He eventually loss his fortune and likely his life. What you compromise to get, you will eventually lose.
Batman Begins. Sixth money lesson learned: use money to champion the causes you care about.
Bruce Wayne could have easily stayed in obscurity or enjoyed life as a playboy. However, as Batman, he used his resources to fight crime and make Gotham a better place. Sans tights and a masks, using your resources for things you care about is extremely fulfilling and can make significant differences in others’ lives.
Cinderella Man. Seventh money lesson learned: keep your integrity regardless of how much (or little) money you have. Even when Jim Braddock (Russell Crowe) was out of work, broke, and had little hope, he still chastised and rebuked his son when he stole food. Jim knew that he and his family were better than that, even with no tangible escape plan in sight.
The Firm. Eighth money lesson learned: beware of dirty money! After graduating from Harvard law school as one of the top 5 students, Mitch McDeere (Tom Cruise) was determined to bury his working-class past. He ignores his wife’s misgivings and gladly accepts a lucrative position at a prosperous but corrupt law firm with ties to the mob. Later, his attempts to severe ties with the firm nearly cost him his law license, his marriage and his life.
Aladdin. Ninth money lesson learned: pretending you have money when you don’t can create some pretty sticky situations. (I apologize choosing a kid’s movie but I was a kid when it came out). Sure Aladdin had a genie who could grant his wishes, but magic alone couldn’t get him Princess Jasmine. He resorted to lying and impersonating a rich prince. His actions nearly cost him the very object of his affection.
The Shawshank Redemption.Tenth money lesson learned: even when you have a crappy job, look out for your own finances. Andy Dufresne could have wallowed in pity and just done his job after the warden crushed his hope of getting an acquittal. Instead, Andy successfully planned for a comfortable retirement while in prison of all places.
Copyright 2007, Roshawn Watson, Pharm.D. All Rights Reserved.
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Copyright 2012, Roshawn Watson, Pharm.D., Ph.D. All Rights Reserved.