Movie Magazine International

Office Space (1999)

USA - 1999

Movie Review By Monica Sullivan

"Office Space" came & went in 1998, with Mike Judge's fans crossing their fingers for a frame or two of animation & Jennifer Aniston's admirers hoping against hope for a sliver of nudity. There IS a microsecond of bare flesh on a video monitor, but it doesn't belong to Aniston's character Joanna. As a person who's never seen "Beavis & Butthead" or "Friends," I thought "Office Space" was one of the funniest movies I'd ever seen, a FOUR STAR gut-splitter, in fact. Objectively, it's probably closer to THREE STARS, but if you're all that objective, why rent "Office Space?" Peter (Ron Livingston) hates his job working for a computer company & he's pathological about his boss, Bill Lumbergh (Gary Cole}. Lumbergh demands that Peter work on weekends after he's spent five whole days trying to look like he's done more than 15 minutes of actual work, total. Peter's big dream in life is to do nothing. Amazingly, he gets his chance after he is hypnotised by a doctor who drops dead in the middle of a trance.

The next day, Peter stays in bed all day & doesn't go to work. He ignores the messages on his answering machine & he hangs up on the girl friend who made him see the hypnotist. When the two Bobs (John C. McGinley & Paul Willson as efficiency experts hired by Lumbergh to get rid of the dead weight in the office) announce their plans to promote Peter & to fire his friends Michael (David Herman) & Samir (Ajay Naidu), Operation Screw The Company moves into high gear. The narrative, the sight gags & the expression of all adult emotions are funny at a very child-like level. Stephen Root as Milton the nerd (in an office infested with them) works miracles with a stapler, coke bottle eye glasses & sotto voce delivery. If you've seen some of the cast members in other stuff, you'll realize what a gift Mike Judge has for bringing out the best in live actors as well as the animated variety. Play hooky & give "Office Space" a chance to creep up on you.

© 2001 - Monica Sullivan - Air Date: 4/26/01

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