By Andrea K. Hammer
The Founder is a critical movie for every entrepreneur to watch–particularly those experiencing unscrupulous behavior from someone parading as a control-mongering “owner.”
True but Shocking Story About the Franchising of McDonald’s
Directed by John Lee Hancock (Saving Mr. Banks), the film follows the true but shocking story behind the franchising of McDonald’s. As the struggling salesman from Illinois who undercuts brothers Mac and Dick McDonald, Michael Keaton captures Ray Kroc‘s desperation to find success after a series of failures. During his constant rejection attempting to sell mixers, the actor elicits empathy from viewers as he listens to upbeat records about persistence after long days on the road. Later, after meeting the McDonald brothers and learning the openly shared details about speedy food preparation for their burger operation, Michael Keaton taps into Ray Kroc‘s desire to devour the business and masquerade as the original owner.
Actors Embody Essence of Honest and Hard-Working Entrepreneurs
Playing Mac and Dick McDonald, John Carroll Lynch and Nick Offerman embody the essence of these honest and hard-working entrepreneurs who built their business through careful analysis, planning and design. In one of the most fascinating scenes in The Founder, the brothers orchestrate practice runs for assembling orders, which they have mapped out and continually refine for the greatest efficiency on a tennis court. Real footage of the brothers and images of the sharp-looking 1950s McDonald’s buildings are interspersed rapidly throughout the film, leaving viewers wishing for longer looks at this original material.
Instructive Commentary for Filmmakers in Bonus Material
In the bonus material, a press conference with the ensemble reinforces the deep thought that actors give to shaping their roles as well as their ability to understand and convey complex characters and situations. Instructive comments about point-of-view shots will also enlighten filmmakers.
Film Rings Alarm for Entrepreneurs Who Need to Protect Their Business
Although the ruthlessness reflected in this true story about McDonald’s is deeply unsettling, The Founder rings an alarm for entrepreneurs who need to protect their business after letting the “wolf into the hen house.”