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The best business documentaries, films, and TV shows to stream in your spare time

With winter in full swing and home orders back in many regions, you may be looking for new (or at least new for you) content to stream.

Maybe you have a few days off vacation to kill or just want to put on some background dressing while you work from home. Either way, these documentaries, films, and TV shows will entertain and educate you for hours.

Documentaries

From left: Wong He, Kenny Taylor and Jarred Gibson in Julia Reichert and Steven Bognar’s “American Factory” on Netflix.
Aubrey Keith – Netflix

American factory

About a year after they left the White House, the Obamas inked a multi-year deal With Netflix to produce a range of original documentaries, series and films for the streaming service. The first project that debuted was American factory, a documentary about the factory of the Chinese company Fuyao in rural Ohio, which is located on the former site of a General Motors Plant. The 2019 film, which depicts the cultural and economic clashes of high-tech China with working-class America, won an Oscar for Best Documentary in February 2020.

Where to see: Netflix

Photographer Lauren Greenfield attends a press conference on her Generation Wealth exhibition. Her film of the same name on Amazon shows our growing obsession with prosperity.
GEORG WENDT – dpa / AFP via Getty Images

Generation wealth

While many of the topics in Generation wealth American artist and filmmaker Lauren Greenfield seems to only be concerned with what is flashy and new at the moment. She has done the long-haul work for this in-depth study of our growing obsession with wealth in the post-Great Recession era. Production ran from 2008 to the film’s release in 2017, and traced Greenfield’s journey around the world – with notable stops in Los Angeles, Moscow, and Dubai – when it wasn’t just the international elite (or at least those who stand out as such They also interviewed high school students, single parents, and others who suffer from debt, whether through tuition, credit cards, or health bills. Your film makes it impossible for viewers to look away from the severe economic divide that has only widened over the past decade.

Where to see: Amazon

Evidence in the HBO documentaries “McMillions”.
Courtesy of HBO

McMillions

Rarely is the identifier (only published online, not in print) that monopolizes the attention of the Internet so quickly and immensely – no less in a weekend. In the week after its debut in July 2018, there was already a particularly heated bidding war over the customization rights The exciting exposé of the Daily Beast on the FBI’s investigation into a complex web of characters who manipulated McDonalds’ popular Monopoly game around the turn of the millennium. A Hollywood film is currently in development – with the working title McScam, and Matt Damon and Ben Affleck who are attached to the project – but HBO’s documentary McMillions looks at the debacle from the FBI’s perspective with numerous interviews with players on both sides of the investigation.

Where to see: HBO

Elizabeth Holmes and her Theranos debacle are analyzed in HBO’s “The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley”.
Courtesy of HBO

The inventor: In search of blood in Silicon Valley

When it comes to notorious scammers, there may be no one more intriguing, quirkier or more annoying than Theranos Founder and CEO Elizabeth Holmes. (Seriously, can you imagine Theranos was still in his best shape, trying to get COVID tests?) Build up the momentum Wall Street Journal the monumental investigative coverage of reporter John Carreyrou and subsequent bestseller Bad bloodwhich revealed that Theranos’ blood tests were a complete illusion, The inventor adds faces to many voices who have spoken out and whistled Theranos – not only to the detriment of their careers, but also at risk for their personal safety. The inventor This includes interviews with analysts and journalists who followed Theranos through its rise and fall – including Capital’s Roger Parloff, who speaks openly about it his own reporting on the once child prodigy, now disgraced Silicon Valley unicorn.

Where to see: HBO

The documentaries of the Fyre Festival: Fyre fraud and FYRE: The biggest party that never happened

There was a short time in 2018 when you couldn’t go to a cafe or bar (even indoors!) In any major city without hearing a variation on the question, “So have you seen the Hulu documentary or the Watched Netflix Documentation? “This would undoubtedly have been a reference to the almost simultaneously released documentaries about the infamous Fyre Festival in the Bahamas in 2017. You don’t have to go into what happened (in case you missed it) as both documentaries will resolve it, but what is remarkable is that each production comes to the story from different angles with different voices. Perhaps the only success story that emerged from the chaos was the production of these accompanying documentaries itself.

Where to see:: Fyre fraud on Hulu; FYRE on Netflix

Movies

Jon Favreau (left) and John Leguizamo in “Chef”.
Courtesy Open Road Films

cook

Sometime between 2009 and 2015, food trucks ate the planet. Of course someone made a film about you. Written, co-produced, directed by and with Jon Favreau, cook follows a chef in Los Angeles who gives up his job in frustration with a dominant restaurateur and after an argument with a food critic and quits. Favreau’s character decides to go back to his roots and try to find his taste again by launching a food truck in Miami. A word to the wise, either eat a large meal before you watch, or plan to eat while you stream. Food is the real star of this film.

Where to see: Netflix

Like a boss

Now let me get that out of the way: this movie is ridiculous. More importantly, it’s so much fun. Starring Salma Hayek, Tiffany Haddish, and Rose Byrne, the plot follows a pair of childhood friends who became business associates (Haddish and Byrne) who have their own private beauty brand that is building a loyal customer base. One of their products accidentally catches the eye of a beauty conglomerate Bigwig (Hayek), who suggests buying their business, apparently promising them creative and financial autonomy. (And of course that doesn’t go according to plan.)

Where to see: Amazon

Moneyball

In perhaps the most perfect sports-meets-business film of 2011 Moneyball Brad Pitt as Billy Beane, general manager of Oakland Athletics, whose stroke of genius in trying to balance a budget leads to the complete overhaul of Major League Baseball.

Where to see: Netflix

In heaven

Certainly there are more soul-killing jobs than layoffs in local offices across the country. And yet in 2009 In heaven sits with you really long after looking at it. George Clooney’s downsizer, Ryan Bingham, is soon fighting for his own job while the company’s budget is slashed. (The irony is palpable.) Anna Kendrick’s Natalie Keener brings a touch of lightness and humanity to the narrative when a young professional learns the ropes while touring with a reluctant Bingham. For frequent flyers, the B-story is certainly Bingham’s endeavor to exceed 10 million frequent flyer miles and have its name imprinted on a jumbo jet. (Some of us are content with just getting promoted to business class.)

Where to see: Amazon

Working girl

Naive but charming in a way that only a 1980s rom-com could be. Working girl Melanie Griffiths follows Tess from Staten Island to Wall Street and from secretary to businesswoman. Griffith is delightful and bubbly, quick with clever ideas that are often overlooked due to her professional position and gender. However, to be completely honest, not everything in this film has aged well. (I’m sorry to say, but Harrison Ford’s character and dialogue are often creepy, if not downright grubby.) Also, Sigourney Weaver’s character is often viewed as the “bad guy” in this film. (Okay, she may have stolen a few ideas from Tess.) But when she looks at it through a 2020 lens, she’s not everything The Bad. She is portrayed as “unlikely” (that awful term), but honestly no one has the right to live in her apartment or use her clothes without permission! Even so, the ending, the soundtrack, and Joan Cusack make this movie worth watching over and over again.

Where to see: Hulu

Television shows

Staff meeting at the talent agency ASK in Netflix’s “Call My Agent!”
Courtesy of Netflix

Call my agent!

Step away from Emily in Paris. This is the Paris-based comedy to be streaming this winter. Originally titled Dix pour cents ((Ten percent), Call my agent! is a satire about cutthroat entertainment agents who do all the grunt work for their vain actor clients (played by real French stars).

Where to see: Netflix

HBO’s new reality series “House of Ho” tells the story of a wealthy Vietnamese-American family in Houston
who built a multimillion dollar empire.
Courtesy Elizabeth Morris – HBO max

House of Ho

On the surface, House of Ho could look like it is trying to detract from 2018’s success and popularity Crazy rich Asians. But this is not your average reality show, and for all its excessive fortunes, this is none of the above Keeping up with the Kardashians. The HBO series tells the life of a wealthy Vietnamese-American family in Houston. Binh and Hue Ho came to the United States during the mass exodus of South Vietnamese immigrants in 1975 and both worked in lower-income jobs for years before starting businesses (a bank and a real estate development company) that produced millions and enabled their lavish lifestyles. But their children only know one life of luxury, and this series explores these generational differences between immigrant parents and first-generation American children – to an extreme, but perhaps not so strange to many viewers.

Where to see: HBO

David Jonsson stars in HBO’s Industry, a drama that traces the youngest alumni on their way to work culture and ambition in London’s financial world.
Courtesy Amanda Searle – HBO

Industry

For some of us, it’s hard to imagine seeing or even watching new shows in office environments, considering how many people are currently working from home indefinitely. However, HBO’s latest drama series offers (at least for most of us normal people) a complete escape from reality in any period of time. Industry This is followed by a group of Gen Z professionals applying for jobs at a top investment bank in London. And since this is HBO, there are plenty of backstabbing and workplace romances (if you will).

Where to see: HBO

Siblings (played by Jeremy Strong and Sarah Snook) battle for control of a family media empire in the HBO drama “Succession”.
Courtesy Peter Kramer – HBO

Succession

Where do you even start with one of the best shows on HBO if not one of the best shows on TV? Lots based on the Murdoch family, Succession follows the Roy family after the patriarch suffers a serious medical emergency and questions – you guessed it – who among his children will control the company’s major assets. This show just keeps getting better and better with each episode, and while it’s easy to play both of the previously available seasons, season three is still a long way off as production has been delayed due to the pandemic. (The COVID crisis has also inspired fans to imagine how each Roy reacted to the lockdowns and where they were quarantined knows This Roman was throwing a secret party on this yacht that turned into one Super spreaders Event.)

Where to see: HBO

Suits

You don’t have to go to law school to find out that most of the storylines are in the USA networks Suits are just not possible in the real world. But this show is so much fun that it doesn’t matter. The dialogue is snappy, the pop culture references would be overwhelming if that wasn’t the point, and yes, the suits (in terms of wardrobe) are pure eye candy. If you are looking for a show that you can watch for a long time, Suits has nine seasons of material, and some of the show’s cast stick it out to the end. (I would have left if Rick Hoffman had left early. Louis Litt is this show.)

Where to see: Amazon

Younger

The premise of this series, of Sex and the City Producer Darren Star is that a woman who re-enters the world of work at the age of 40 pretends to be much … younger to get her dream job (or at least a stepping stone to a dream job). Well, to some, that may seem absurd. It actually sounds plausible to the rest of us. Since its release in 2015, the dramedy starring Sutton Foster and Hilary Duff has received positive reviews and a loyal following, and there is still time to catch up as season seven, slated to re-shoot next year, is expected to be that Show is the last.

Where to see: Hulu

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