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Sorry to Bother You (2018)

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In an alternate present-day version of Oakland, telemarketer Cassius Green discovers a magical key to professional success, propelling him into a universe of greed.

Director:

Boots Riley

Writer:

Boots Riley
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Popularity
109 ( 6)

'Sorry to Bother You,' But Let’s Talk About Awful Jobs

Lakeith Stanfield and the Sorry to Bother You crew reveal the highs and lows of following your dreams, the awkwardness of sex scenes, and their most soul-crushing jobs.

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7 wins & 27 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lakeith Stanfield ... Cassius Green
Tessa Thompson ... Detroit
Jermaine Fowler ... Salvador
Omari Hardwick ... Mr. _______
Terry Crews ... Sergio
Kate Berlant Kate Berlant ... Diana DeBauchery
Michael X. Sommers ... Johnny
Danny Glover ... Langston
Steven Yeun ... Squeeze
Armie Hammer ... Steve Lift
Robert Longstreet ... Anderson
David Cross ... Cassius's White Voice (voice)
Patton Oswalt ... Mr. _______'s White Voice (voice)
Lily James ... Detroit's White British Voice (voice)
Forest Whitaker ... First Equisapien / Demarius
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Storyline

In an alternate version of Oakland, Cassius Green gets a telemarketing job and finds the commission paid job a dispiriting struggle as a black man selling to predominately white people over the phone. That changes when a veteran advises him to use his "white voice," and the attitude behind it to make himself more appealing to customers. With a bizarrely high-pitched accent, Cassius becomes a success even as his colleagues form a union to improve their miserable jobs. Regardless, Cassius finds himself promoted a "Power Caller" selling the most morally abhorrent but lucrative products and services as his connection to his girlfriend and colleagues fades away. However, Cassius' conscience arises anew as he finds himself in the midst of his boss' bizarre world of condescending bigoted decadence and his sinister plans to create the perfect subservient work force with Cassius' help. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Fantasy | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive language, some strong sexual content, graphic nudity, and drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 July 2018 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Sorry to Bother You See more »

Filming Locations:

Oakland, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$727,266, 8 July 2018, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$17,493,096, 1 November 2018
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Donald Glover originally planned to play the lead role of Cassius Green, but was unable to do so due to scheduling conflicts with Solo: A Star Wars Story. He recommended his Atlanta co-star LaKeith Stanfield for the role instead. See more »

Quotes

Steve Lift: Cash, I'm gonna make you a proposal. I can see that you'd wanna say no, but I wouldn't do that before you see what I'm offering you.
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Connections

References Putney Swope (1969) See more »

Soundtracks

Whatthegirlmuthafuckinwannadoo
Written by Boots Riley and David Council
Performed by The Coup
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Hysterical, Thoughtful Satire
29 June 2018 | by bastille-852-731547See all my reviews

I walked into this movie at an advance screening expecting something unique, but nothing could have prepared me for the sheer brilliance of this satirical masterwork. Hilarious from beginning to end while also subversive, this film joins some of the finest satires of its generation--from "South Park" to some of the best episodes of "Saturday Night Live" to "Wild Tales."

The story follows Cassius, an African-American telemarketer in Oakland. When told to use his "white voice" on the job while making calls, he quickly rises through the ranks of his profession--and ends up getting a hefty promotion. All of a sudden, things start to spiral out of control. I definitely won't give anything else away, as doing so would spoil what clearly must be experienced for oneself. The film's script is incredibly strong and is consistently hilarious. I laughed more while watching this film than any other movie in recent memory. Its dialogue is not only humorous, but incredibly frank and on-the-nose in its brutal honesty. The film's social consciousness and commentary intersect in ways that are thoughtful, snappy, and deeply rooted in (often unfortunately) a sense of genuine realism. Yet the film's image of the world is not equal to our society with microscopic precision, as its humor often tends to look at current societal issues with the mirror of a macabre fun-house.

Performances in the film are outstanding throughout, and the film is incredibly engaging throughout its run time. Free of pacing issues, it moves at a fast pace and twists and turns so unusually that one will never know what could happen next. This erratic nature is truly part of the film's genius. If such a style of narrative filmmaking was attempted to be used as a technique in almost any other film, it would fail miserably, but Boots Riley was able to commendably stay one step ahead of audiences while making them laugh profusely and question why and how our society may be in deep-seated decline. Also noteworthy is the film's soundtrack, which is a superb mix of rap and pop. The movie can often be strange, but viewers will be all the more thankful for its genuine audaciousness upon the film's conclusion.

Riley's ambitious filmmaking has a variety of possible influences (Spike Lee, Jordan Peele, Alejandro Inarritu, Charles Kaufman) yet feels wholly original--and genuinely, howlingly funny and socially relevant despite being so unconventional--from beginning to end. Very highly recommended. 10/10


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