Can you believe it’s been 20 years since “Office Space” was released? That’s two whole decades of Lumbergh impersonations, red Swingline staplers
Austin Film Society is honoring “Office Space” with the 2019 Star of Texas Award — and inducting it into the Texas Film Hall of Fame at the Texas Film Awards on March 7. Some of you may be wondering why. Well, the 1999 cult classic was filmed right here in Austin! The building it was filmed in of course no longer says “Initech,” but it still stands in South Austin, recognizable to the movie’s biggest fans.
For those who haven’t seen the cult hit, “Office Space” was directed and written by Mike Judge. The
Maybe one of the reasons “Office Space” holds such a special place in our culture is the universality of office life (the same reason the TV show “The Office” has had an impact). Even people who have never worked in offices can see how a mundane work experience could lead one to lose it. For instance, I’ve never worked in a cubicle, and pop culture would lead me to believe that’s one of the worst fates a person could suffer. You can just feel the misery through the screen.
But what has really made this film stand the test of time — and what has earned it its place in the Texas Film Hall of Fame — is the comedy. Any two people who knows the film well enough could shoot quotes back and forth at each other. Not only about the things I mentioned above, but also about flair, TPS reports, printers and “missing” work. Mike Judge’s screenplay and direction led to a near-perfect comedy with a killer cast.
Maybe its initial run, with a so-so box office and good critical reception, wasn’t a great litmus test for this movie. Maybe it needed time to marinate in our collective consciousness — a defining factor in most cult classics.
Have you revisited “Office Space” recently? How has it held up for you all these years? Let us know in the comments!
Featured photo credit: Jackie Ruth/Shuffle Online
Originally hailing from Pennsylvania, Jackie has called Austin home since choosing to attend the University of Texas, where she graduated with a degree in multimedia journalism. She loves spending time with her dogs, writing about pop culture in all its forms and spending time with friends – eating, drinking and doing trivia.