New York secretary Tess McGill is in a job that demands little of her talent. Her ideas are so brilliant that her boss, stockbroker Katherine Parker, steals them for herself. When the overbearing executive breaks her leg skiing, Tess seizes the opportunity to take over the merger negotiations that Katherine was working on with businessman Jack Trainer. And he represents more than just a career opportunity for Tess; at their very first meeting, he falls in love with our “working girl” … This office romantic comedy is famous not least of all for the opening credit sequence, with the “flying eye” camera circling the Statue of Liberty before swooping down on the Staten Island ferry, where a dissolve brings us inside to pick up the star Melanie Griffith. No less spectacular is the night shot where the camera flies just above the waterline towards the glittering lights of Manhattan. But the star of the cinematography here is the way the camera focuses on the actors’ faces, with “actors’ director” Mike Nichols and “actors’ cameraman” Michael Ballhaus making a perfect match. As Nichols said, “working with Michael is like being in heaven, only you don’t have to die for it.”
by Mike Nichols
with Harrison Ford, Sigourney Weaver, Melanie Griffith, Alec Baldwin
USA 1988 113’

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