In the Company of Men

Overview

Two frustrated young executives vent their pent-up rage via a childish prank and end up paying a price in this psychological black comedy, the feature-film debut of writer-director Neil LaBute. Former college buddies Chad Aaron Eckhart and Howard Matt Malloy are in their early 30s and work in the same company. One day the two encounter each other in the men's executive washroom and begin expressing their mutual frustration regarding their lack of rapid advancement at work and their most recent bad luck with ...
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Overview

Two frustrated young executives vent their pent-up rage via a childish prank and end up paying a price in this psychological black comedy, the feature-film debut of writer-director Neil LaBute. Former college buddies Chad Aaron Eckhart and Howard Matt Malloy are in their early 30s and work in the same company. One day the two encounter each other in the men's executive washroom and begin expressing their mutual frustration regarding their lack of rapid advancement at work and their most recent bad luck with women. In hopes of gaining revenge against the fairer sex and bolstering their battered egos, the two hatch a nasty scheme to be enacted over an upcoming six-week-long business trip: Find a vulnerable young woman to court, slather with affection, and then callously dump. They choose a lovely, hearing-impaired typist named Christine Stacey Edwards, a woman who hasn't dated in many years. Not realizing that she is about to be the metaphorical mouse between a pair of hungry cats, she laps up the sudden attention, but in no time it becomes apparent that Chad is the man she prefers. When Howard discovers this, it creates escalating tension between the two men who begin playing more psychological games, not only with hapless Christine, but also with each other.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Mark Deming
Neil LaBute's disturbing and corrosively funny debut feature is pure dynamite as a character study and investigation of the mindset of the corporate male (or perhaps the male in general). As both writer and director, LaBute gives his leading characters enough detail to emerge as flesh-and-blood people rather than caricatures of Bad Men, and Aaron Eckhart and Matt Malloy make the most of their material as Chad and Howard, the yuppies who seek to win and then crush the affections of a hearing impaired co-worker. In this story, Chad and Howard's humanity doesn't redeem them; in fact, they seem all the more repulsive for it, especially Howard, initially the more benign member of the pair, whose fear and distrust of women becomes as ugly as Chad's more obvious misogyny. While Stacy Edwards isn't given as much to do, she makes Christine well-rounded enough to have her own complement of virtues and flaws. The starkly beautiful images evoke Edward Hopper's paintings of urban isolation, as they enhance the film's tone of clinical and sterile detachment. In the company of men of course carries a double meaning, as the movie indicts American corporate culture as much as (or more than) men as a gender. If you wanted to kick start a heated debate about gender issues at the end of the 20th century, one viewing of this movie gave you all the encouragement you needed.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/16/1999
  • UPC: 043396260139
  • Original Release: 1997
  • Rating:

  • Source: Sony Pictures
  • Format: VHS

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Aaron Eckhart Chad
Matt Malloy Howard
Stacy Edwards Christine
Mark Rector John
Emily Cline Suzanne
Jason Dixie Intern
Technical Credits
Neil LaBute Director, Screenwriter
Mark Archer Producer
Toby Gaff Executive Producer
Mark Hart Executive Producer
Julia Henkel Production Designer
Tony Hettinger Cinematographer
Matt Malloy Executive Producer
George Moskal Sound/Sound Designer
Tony Moskal Sound/Sound Designer
Stephen Pevner Producer
Joyce Pierpoline Associate Producer
Joel Plotch Editor
Karel Roessingen Songwriter
Denise Snider Asst. Director
Ken Williams Songwriter
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