Clockwatchers (1998) - Rotten Tomatoes


Clockwatchers (1998)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Clockwatchers Photos

Movie Info

This modern comedy focuses on the daily grind of a group of temporary employees working in a large business office. Iris is the newest temp in a totalitarian-style office and is quickly befriended by the other temps. Things heat up, however, when management realizes that office supplies are being stolen.

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Parker Posey
as Margaret
Kevin Cooney
as Mr. Kilmer
Bob Balaban
as Milton Lasky
Scott Mosenson
as Jack Shoberg
Irene Olga Lopez
as Coffee Lady
Joshua Malina
as Receptionist
O-Lan Jones
as Madame Debbie
Joe Chrest
as Detective
Patrice Pitman Quinn
as Woman in Office
Michelle Arthur
as Dianne the Shoe Lady
Athena Ulbach
as Jane's Sister
Lynn Tufeld
as Woman Missing in Search
Jennifer Balgobin
as Attractive Woman
Gregg L. Daniel
as Policeman
Tim Hutchinson
as Businessman
Sully Diaz
as Waitress
Jim Wise
as Man in Bar
Wendy Pitts
as Saleslady
Patti Yasotake
as Theater Woman
Steve Rodriguez
as Lobby Guard
Constance Forshind
as Flight Attendant
Jaime Gómez
as Derrick
Bridget Sienna
as Woman with Cop
Terri Hoyos
as Female Executive
Brodie Nelson
as Copy Repairman
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Critic Reviews for Clockwatchers

All Critics (26) | Top Critics (7)

A downbeat yet pungent comedy about the indignities of temp life, the film keenly dissects the tenuousness of camaraderie forged among those deemed disposable, and quietly but unequivocally diagnoses the ills of end-of-millennium corporate culture.

April 16, 2021 | Full Review…

This is a rare film about the way people actually live.

January 1, 2000 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

I wonder if we'd all know about this film if it featured four leading dudes from the '90s, say Keanu Reeves or River Phoenix or Kevin Costner or Mark Wahlberg. Watch and make amends.

January 4, 2022 | Full Review…

You just want to shake these four twits out of their collective, weirdly unsubstantiated malaise.

January 8, 2007 | Full Review…

Insightful and well-acted comedy of inter-office angst.

April 2, 2005 | Rating: 4/5

Like the unrelenting Musack that fills the heroines's offices, Clockwatchers is a bit too sedate. If you don't watch carefully, you'll miss half the fun.

August 11, 2003 | Rating: C+

Audience Reviews for Clockwatchers

A not particularly enlightening look at office life. It was of course trumped eventually by the masterful Office Space. The film ultimately raises the question - so what?

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

Watched this movie a lot as a teenager. I love it's dark humor and the different characters.

Sunil Jawahir
Sunil Jawahir

Super Reviewer


What starts as a kind of Nine to Five comedy about a group of young women temping at a credit company, evolves into a rather dark, frustrating, realistic and somewhat depressing dramedy.

Iris (Toni Collette) is the newest temp recruit at a credit company where the key is to "look like you're busy". Incredibly shy, somewhat insecure and lonely Iris is soon befriended by three fellow tempers (Parker Posey, Lisa Kudrow and Alanna Ubach) who welcome her into their world of boredom, under-appreciation and aspiring dreams unfulfilled or out of reach. The catalyst for their friendship becoming stronger before ultimately falling apart is the arrival of a new office assistant and a subsequent string of thefts of everything from stationery to personal diaries. As suspicious eyes turn to the temps ("it's them and us"), it isn't long before bitterness and resentment break out, and things are never the same again.

Despite the truly terrible, 80's looking DVD cover which inaccurately suggests a kooky office comedy, this is actually quite a bleak look at friendship and office politics, and is powerful stuff in parts. Toni Collette, as narrator and lead player, is truly excellent and has a way of portraying inner thoughts not spoken that is quite unique. As the film enters its second phase, you can see her think through possibilities and suspicions and, though the transformation of character she promises in voiceover at the start isn't (thankfully) completely fulfilled, her depiciton of Iris remains compelling throughout. Parker Posey provides excellent support, and has a heartbreaking and frustratingly real scene when her friends seemingly abandon her.

A very cheap and plainly looking film (though that's probably half the point), Clockwatchers doesn't have enough of a satisfactory conclusion to make this entirely successful, but still remains a film you shouldn't judge by its tacky cover.

Daniel Parsons
Daniel Parsons

Super Reviewer

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