How motivation can overcome despair and lead to success: the story of Chris Gardner

Directed by Gabriele Muccino - 2006 - Usa - 117 minutes

The Pursuit of Happiness

Chris Gardner is a father who sells electromedical equipment and is struggling to support his family.

Despite brave attempts to keep marriage and family life alive, the mother of little Christopher, who is only five years old, can no longer cope with the pressures and decides to leave.

Chris, turned into a single father, continues to stubbornly seek employment as a better-paid salesman.

After a casual meeting with a stockbroker, he decides to enter the world of finance and manages to get an internship at a prestigious consulting firm; although it is an unpaid position, he accepts it with the confidence that at the end of the internship he will have a job and a future.

Chris is confident to live by selling his laser for medical diagnostics and attend the internship, at the end of which only one in 20 will be hired.

I won’t tell you anything more about the story: I leave you the pleasure to follow the movie step by step.

Below you find the trailer: then I’ll tell you about the remarkable points.




The crucial points of the movie

The film is based on the story of Chris Gardner, a U.S. entrepreneur who lived in poverty in the ’80s and later founded a brokerage firm worth hundreds of millions of dollars: a genuine source of food for thought for those wishing to undertake a path of personal and professional growth.

Here are the ones that are evident to me.

First of all, the strength of motivation, which pushes a desperate man to face with determination a time when everything goes wrong and the case never seems to help you.

In addition, Chris Gardner shows how it is possible even in the worst of times to plan a better future and look into the eyes of your children, with the awareness of someone who is doing his best to help them build a better life: in other words, a film not to be missed for anyone who wants to understand the mechanism that binds needs, motivation and goals.

To conclude, business people will also find several insights:

  • a realistic example of the hard task of the sales hunter (the one who places the product with cold contact…);
  • the self-consoling attitude of those who have been told NO;
  • the apparent paradox of being able to sell when you do nothing to do so.

Did I manage to convince you and see the film?


Will Smith, Jaden Smith, Thandie Newton, Brian Howe, James Karen, Dan Castellaneta, Kurt Fuller, Takayo Fischer, Domenic Bove, Scott Klace

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