In Good Company (2004)

If my boss was honestly Eric, I would probably end up quitting right away.

An ad salesman, Dan (Dennis Quaid), must take a junior position after a corporate shakedown. Worse, he now reports to a much younger boss, Carter (Topher Grace), a business school grad who espouses a sales approach branded Synergy that’s at odds with Dan’s old-school style. Although they don’t see eye to eye, the two must get along, a mandate made more difficult when Carter becomes smitten with Dan’s daughter (Scarlett Johansson).

This is a very unusual film to say the least. In some respects it’s a buddy movie. In others, it’s a romantic comedy. In still others, it’s a drama about the work-place. This was all my problem with the film, cause I don’t think it quite knew what it wanted to be. There’s a lot of romance in here, as well as sad moments of people being “let go”, or these two dudes hating on each other. I thought the film’s constant changing between these ideas annoyed me, cause it never really came out coherent enough.

However the tone is what in the end, won me over. There is just a certain type of charm to this script, because it’s not trying too hard to be likable, it just is. There is a real sense of comedy within this film that works, and brings a lot of smiles to the faces of those watching, but the whole film is just so well-handled that it’s hard not to like this film.

Not only is there a great deal of comedy, but the film also touches on such themes very well like the corporate culture, marriage, people losing their jobs, and a relationship between a father and daughter. They all are touched on so well, and although the film isn’t trying to have you crying in your seats, you can’t help but to have that warm feeling inside.

Dennis Quaid is great in this lead role as Dan, who does what he always does best, and plays the strong man that doesn’t take no for an answer. But he starts to realize that his career may be fading away, and accepts this fact, and we support him as the film goes on. Topher Grace is good at playing Carter, and really does hold his weight in this film much to my surprise. The scenes with him and Quaid work well, cause you can feel a genuine chemistry somewhere underneath all those weird, and awkward looks. Also, let’s not forget to mention Scarlett Johansson who does a good job supporting job as Alex, Dan’s daughter. She’s get a lot of ish talked on her for not being a good actress, but I think she’s very good here and doesn’t try to do anything crazy at all.

Consensus: It’s change of story may bother some, but the overall charming and likable tone, will appeal to others, as well as its great performances from the cast.



  1. I think this was a pretty good film. The ending was a bit of a let down and I didn’t like the way some things were resolved for Topher Grace’s character despite the fact that he’s finally getting some idea of what he doesn’t want to do.

    This is one of the few post-LIT/Girl with a Pearl Earring roles that I liked from Scarlett and there’s not many. I think when she’s given a character that is real, doesn’t have to be overtly sexual or have lots of dialogue. She can be really good.

  2. I remember being pulled into seeing this several years ago with a few girls. It wasn’t too sappy at all and the conflict between Johansson and Grace’s characters were well developed.

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