No movie springs from a vacuum. There are always influences from past examples of the genre, from the previous work of the filmmakers and stars, even from similar films that don’t quite work. If you want to understand where a movie is coming from, take a look at where it’s coming from.
In Middle Men, Luke Wilson invents porn on the Internet and then thinks it’s a bad idea, but no backsies, he’s stuck with the Russian mobsters who want his money and him dead… This flick sprang from (among other films):
• Startup.com (2001), a fantastic documentary about how two friends lose their innocence and test their friendship when they go into business together online.
• GoodFellas (1990), about the real-life mobster Henry Hill, the movie Middle Men seems to have been most inspired by stylistically.
• Pirates of Silicon Valley (1999), in which Bill Gates’ (Anthony Michael Hall) Microsoft and Steve Jobs’ (Noah Wyle) Apple fight it out for dominance in the early days of home computer, paving the way for the Web.
• Midnight Run (1988), written by Middle Men cowriter-director George Gallo, one of the funniest movies ever made.
Where to buy:
GoodFellas [Region 1/U.S.] [Region 1/Can.] [Region 2]
Midnight Run [Region 1/U.S.] [Region 1/Can.] [Region 2]
Pirates of Silicon Valley [Region 1/U.S.] [Region 1/Can.]
Startup.com [Region 1/U.S.] [Region 1/Can.] [Region 2]