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Cinema 16 Feb 2015

Films that a digital entrepreneur and innovator should watch

Digital entrepreneurship and innovation are as present in our lives as cinema and television. Biopics about famous people, which in years past depicted politicians, sportspeople, journalists…, today deal with CEOs, entrepreneurs and innovators in the digital age. The entertainment industry is keeping up with new technologies and this list of movies and tv shows can prove that everybody can get inspiration having a good time when talking about entrepreneurship.

With their devices, applications, platforms, products, etc., the great digital entrepreneurs of our time are changing our habits and behaviors. Today, cinema portrays celebrities like Steve Jobs, who will have a new biopic in 2015. At the same time, films are enriched with new plots that bring to the fore startups, investors, problems and the benefits derived from the consumption of new technologies, or even terms as current as “data”, bitcoins or venture capital, among others.

The social network (2010). The power of social connection.

“You don’t get to 500 million friends without making a few enemies”. This is the motto of the film that depicts the creation of Facebook, the world’s most important social network, personified by its founders Mark Zuckerberg and Eduardo Saverin, and by their later signing, Sean Parker (Napster founder). Directed by David Fincher for Columbia Pictures, the film recounts the attributes and miseries of Facebook and how an initial idea can become something different. Aged 30, Zuckerberg today is one of the most powerful persons in the world, with a personal fortune of nearly 33 million dollars.

Pirates of Silicon Valley (1999). Apple vs Microsoft.

This is one of the first films about two of the great heavyweights of today’s technology: Steve Jobs and Bill Gates. Thanks to it we find out about the birth of Microsoft and Apple and how computer freaks became the tycoons of technology, which has revolutionized the world. It was directed by Martyn Burke and the film was premiered for Turner Network Television.

Moneyball (2011). Data and sports signings.

One of the buzz words lately is ‘Big Data’. This word brings together terms like data, Data Scientist, business intelligence… This film (Columbia Pictures) starring Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill and Philip Seymour Hoffman, and directed by Bennet Miller, presents the story of Billy Beane, general manager of the Oakland Athletics, who in 2001 revolutionized the history of baseball, and perhaps of sports in general, by using the “Moneyball” method, based on statistics from databases. The story also deals with the clash between the use of new technologies and resistance to change and the “fear” of new things.

Jobs (2013). Steve Jobs, the towering shadow of an innovative leader.

Directed by Joshua Michael Stern and starring Ashton Kutcher for Open Road Films, it depicts Steve Jobs, his continuous comings and goings at Apple, and portrays the man behind the genius and visionary with hints of his eccentricities, his successes and failures.

Something Ventured (2011). The figure of the investor behind risky ventures.

This documentary tells us about the investors behind venture capital who helped startups and companies like Intel, Apple, Cisco, Atari, Genentech, Tandem and others become benchmarks of an industry that is a symbol of innovation and economic growth.

Startup.com (2001). The difficulty in growing a startup.

This documentary focuses on the dotcom bubble that forced thousands of companies to close down in a short period of time in the year 2000. GovWorks was one of them. A startup that was born from the idea of two childhood friends, Kaleil Isaza and Tom Herman, and ended up killing a friendship and many dreams after navigating among venture capital, technical deficiencies, sabotage, unfair competition… An epic journey that all entrepreneurs should know about.

The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin (2014). The Bitcoin wave and cryptocoins.

A documentary that tells the story of a developer fascinated by Bitcoin and its community. What just a few years was regarded as a bluff, today is on everyone’s lips; cryptocoins are now accepted as a currency and many banks are beginning to follow close behind.

Her (2013). Technology at the service of our needs.

The director Spike Jonze immerses us in a very possible future with the relationship between a man (Joaquin Phoenix) and an operating system that behaves differently with each user. The operating system’s voice is Scarlett Johansson’s, who ends up winning the love of the main character. We are always listening to entrepreneurs talking about serving for people needs. This could be a good example. Will technological advances or mobile apps be able to meet all our personal needs? Will technology end up isolating us?

Dsknectd (2013). The digital era has changed the way we relate.

This documentary explores the use of smartphones as a tool for social interaction, communication, information consumption and virtual society creation. An in-depth analysis of how we consume that technology and how it is changing our life and our environment.

Silicon Valley (HBO series, 2014). When the reality of digital entrepreneurship outdoes fiction.

This series by the pay-per-view channel HBO puts us, not without humor, in the shoes of the developers and entrepreneurs at startups, combining everything that surrounds them: ideas, development and programming, pitches, business plans, contests, venture capital, data analytics, algorithms, disruption… After the first season screened in 2014, the second one is already being prepared in the United States.

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