The Promotion
The Promotion

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- 55/100 based on 8,562 votes
  • Released: 2008
  • Runtime: 86 mins
  • Director: Steve Conrad
  • Studio: Dimension Films
  • Genres: Comedy

At 33, Doug Stauber is ready for a promotion. He's married, wants to buy a house, and is assistant manager at a Chicago supermarket that's building a new store in his neighborhood. His boss tells him he's a shoo-in to manage the new store, then, a rival appears - Richard Wehlner, transferred from Canada. Richard has a deeper resume than Doug, is really nice, has a wife and daughter, and wants the promotion to manager too. How should Doug behave toward Richard - as a friend, a... (Full plot summary below)

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Full Plot Details

At 33, Doug Stauber is ready for a promotion. He's married, wants to buy a house, and is assistant manager at a Chicago supermarket that's building a new store in his neighborhood. His boss tells him he's a shoo-in to manage the new store, then, a rival appears - Richard Wehlner, transferred from Canada. Richard has a deeper resume than Doug, is really nice, has a wife and daughter, and wants the promotion to manager too. How should Doug behave toward Richard - as a friend, a colleague, a competitor, or an enemy? Richard, it seems, has demons and a past, but with the help of motivational tapes, he's resolved to succeed. Corporate and personal tests await the two men. Written by <[email protected]

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Movie Reviews

Miami Herald - 8/10 by Rene Rodriguez The film's refusal to take its characters anything less than seriously makes it cut deeper than a Will Ferrell lampoon.
Philadelphia Inquirer - 8/10 by Steven Rea It's totally down-to-earth, as real as a trip to the supermarket.
ReelViews - 8/10 by James Berardinelli There are enough laughs to justify it being labeled as a comedy but a stronger storyline than one normally associates with this kind of film. It's an enjoyable diversion amidst the big guns of summer.
TV Guide Magazine - 8/10 by Ken Fox Conrad's script surprises at nearly every turn.
Portland Oregonian - 7/10 by M. E. Russell Conrad seems to have used whatever clout he got from "The Pursuit of Happyness" to fund something personal and sincere -- a story that's ultimately about victories of character and suppressing your worst impulses.
The A.V. Club - 7/10 by Nathan Rabin It's a sweet, human movie, if not an entirely successful one.
Village Voice - 7/10 by Scott Foundas As to whether a smart comedy about work and family can itself succeed in a marketplace overrun by idiot farces about reluctant bridesmaids (male and female), shotgun Vegas weddings, and finding or losing Mr./Ms. Right . . . this remains to be seen.
New York Daily News - 6/10 by Elizabeth Weitzman There's still a lot to like here, but ultimately the movie reflects its hapless hero a little too well. While we're constantly rooting for it to succeed, the finish line seems forever out of reach.
Entertainment Weekly - 6/10 by Lisa Schwarzbaum The Promotion edges toward some pretty bleak stuff. Then it steps back and laughs, like an office slacker.
Seattle Post-Intelligencer - 6/10 by Bill White At its best, The Promotion offers a sympathetic view of ordinary people caught on the hamster wheel of corporate politics.
Boston Globe - 6/10 by Wesley Morris A good, occasionally insightful workplace comedy.
The New York Times - 6/10 by Stephen Holden As this sweet, ineffectual comedy follows two sad sacks competing for the job of manager at a new branch of a Chicago grocery chain, it pointedly avoids the raucous bad-boy clowning of the typical Everyguy farce. Think of it as a polite, tightly muzzled "Clerks."

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