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Best movies to learn power dynamics

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And the message is that when you don't enforce your boundaries you make people grow mean.

I've seen it happen in real life.
The doormat syndrome makes people grow angry because they demand more assertiveness and more honesty -rather than passive aggression or hidden plots to achieve what they don't have the courage to go for-.
And because people grow disgusted and angry at the doormat.

Great psychological description of why people anger may be justified in this cases, and why doormats are not the nice guys they pretend they are, they have a nasty side.

They can easily play the "victim card" and paint the one really trying to help them (even if fueled by some anger) like an abuser.

being a doormat is dangerous to your health, and to others, cause in the long term you can end doing very ugly stuff if those bottle up emotiones come pouring like a volcano in some incontrolable fashion...

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Diavolo, The Stand user criminal leader of the gang Passione, an organization of a different dimension, in part 5 of jojo (golden wind) is a good example of losing power as a consequence of sucking as a leader and not adding enough value to people around you (logic of political survival).

It seems he was very talented at going to the top, but not so good at staying there for long, at least not as long as he wanted...

He was very powerful and relatively smart, yet he has many mental issues and personality disorders.

He was unable to form normal human conections-relationships, try to kill his own daugther to preserve his secret identity, and was unable to understand why people working under him may feel a need to betray him (disgusted at his actions, need for revenge stronger than fear caused by his excessive and dramatized cruel punishments)

At the end he made so many enemies inside and outside of his organizations that he was dethroned.

Powerful people was willing to sacrifice their own life and limbs to see the tyrant go to hell.

He was very good at intimidation and he have good manners, I give him that, even people who hate him keep calling him "boss" until the end.

in his favor some elements of his philosphy are probably right, its just his piece-of-shit side overshadowed his good qualities and good looks (Araki draws beautiful men), and he was insane, paranoid, narcicistic, egomaniac...

Doppio was his "good" size, yet it seems he was a different soul altogheter...

His own hitmens "La Squadra di Esecuzione" where trying to murder him (for not paying them enough among other things), that is why he has to put Bucciarati team as his daugther body guards, then harms her in front of Bucciarati (a men who values family almost above all) instead of pretending to be protective of her and waiting to murder her in secret, cause he has low emphaty and no theory of mind (of others) to even consider that Bucciarati may not be ok with that.

I mean, I am happy for the poor girl that his father was blind in that respect and was unable to eliminate her.


Bruno Bucciarati is an example of a great leader, he is not even that charismatic at the beggining (he has no Dio instant Charisma) and his fashion style is very questionable (he looks effeminate and weird)  yet he is so good has a leader, he sacrifice so much and really do care about his people, that he became legendary even in his own lifetime.


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Thanks for sharing the movies Stef.
Looks like animes can present a different perspective compared to the normal, Hollywood movies.

Quote from Lucio Buffalmano on May 16, 2021, 6:26 pm

I rarely see movies these days as I tend to consider them at high risk of wasted time.
The good movies you can learn from are rare, after all.

I guess you went through lots of movies to pick up the best scenes on power dynamics for Power University.
From your experience, I suppose movies are low ROI for learning power dynamics if the intention is to improve your knowledge and skills.

I've seen it happen in real life.
The doormat syndrome makes people grow angry because they demand more assertiveness and more honesty -rather than passive aggression or hidden plots to achieve what they don't have the courage to go for-.
And because people grow disgusted and angry at the doormat.

Getting angry and raising one's voice is almost a way of saying "you're acting useless, shape up, show me you're capable of acting like a real (wo)man".

I think it's the passive aggression or even covert aggression that leads people to get angry.
I do get annoyed by passive aggression, especially when I point it out and the passive aggressor denies it.
Maybe it's more than that because it's really challenging to communicate with an extremely passive person.

Not only I've seen it happen in real life, but I've seen it happening to myself as well when I once dated an overly passive and meek woman.
I'd grow angry at the over-passivity, at letting others take advantage of her, and at her trying to achieve things with me without asking and speaking directly. And then I'd feel a bit bad -and bad about myself- for having gotten angry.

I think it's hard to develop intimacy with a overly passive person.
You cannot have those raw, intimate conversations.
Lack of intimacy is frustrating when you are developing a relationship with a person.
As you said, it's challenging to build a life together and achieve things.

What's the Best Way to Get People to Be More Direct & Assertive?

I suppose the ideal approach would be to encourage assertive communication from the frame of it being beneficial to the relationship.
Something like

If there's something that you would like to change or discuss about, I am open towards hearing you speak directly about.
I believe our relationship will improve through open, honest dialogues.
Yes, at times, this will cause friction but it's healthy because we know where each other stands even if we do not resolve the issue right at that moment.
Let me know if there's something you want to talk about.

Mindsets on Being More Assertive

I realised mindset is so important in assertiveness.
It's half the battle won in becoming more assertive.

This reminds me of our discussion on The Gifts of Imperfections.
I think that the mindset is too passive and will result in passive behaviour & communication.
For example, if some abuser attacks your imperfection, are you just going to accept that?
If your relationship has imperfections, are you going to bring that up assertively and talk through it with your partner?

From your article on Enlightened Individualism, I agree that it's better to go the other way first.
A touch of narcissism will help one to put one's needs first.
Then you can learn about the social exchange law from there and forge win-win relationships while also developing your growth mindset and anti-fragile ego to become a generally value-adding person.

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Thanks for sharing the movies Stef.

You are welcome

now that you mention it, this are shows more than movies (39 episodes), and I should have posted them on a thread I myself created especifically for anime, I just forgot about it.

If Lucio preffer I am ok if the post are moved there ( i would do it myself but my time to edit and erase has expired).

It just pains me that so many people will not benefit, enjoy and learn from high quality fiction examples just because of a prejudice against cartoons ( some people believe they are only for children or otakus and losers)

Looks like animes can present a different perspective compared to the normal, Hollywood movies.

I agree, if you are selective about the animes  you watch, you may be surprised by what you will find and what you may learn.


Wow, what a movie.

A spaceship sails to a distant planet with the "best" specimen humanity has to offer to save the species.

To make the intergenerational trip easier, the first batch is bred inside the spaceship and to make the life inside easier, they are drugged daily to keep emotions muted -including sexual urges and aggression-.
Eventually though, the smart kids find out what's on and get off the medications.

And that's when they re-discover human nature, with both its beauty and its ugliness -one of the main themes of the movie-.

Some great takeaways both for power dynamics and TPM's values:

  • "Good" but weak leadership enables evil to emerge and take hold
  • A leader's duty is to isolate and, when not possible to isolate, eliminate the antisocial elements that undermine the group, the harmony, and/or the mission
  • It's either you defeat / take out the tyrant, or eventually the group will follow him -no matter how poor the leadership is-
  • Despotic / tyrannical leadership is only good for the leader and generally value-taking for the group
  • Tyrants must be eliminated for a better system to emerge -you can't negotiate-
  • The scum is more likely to rise to the top than the cream
  • Machiavellianism is an important skills for social success and, even more, for leadership

And deeper themes:

  • Human nature is both splendid and terrifying -and the responsibility it entails-. It's up to each one of us to make it less destructive and more splendid -both within us, and externally-
  • Meaning of life, living for a future cause, or hedonistic pursuit of pleasure and destruction
  • Rebelling VS trusting & obeying
  • Chaos VS order

It's a Hollywood movie, so expect the typical Hollywood markers -or limitations, if you will.
Such as: black and white dichotomies -albeit in this case it might make sense as archetypes of good/evil dichotomy-, bad guys losing, "good" obviously winning -in spectacular fashion, of course-, unrealistic fights, over-dramatic and unrealistic scenes of clashes for leadership, etc. etc.

Still, very much recommended.

Give it a try and let me know.

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A poor family manipulates its way into becoming house helpers for another ultra-rich family and exploiting the latter's home and wealth. The repercussions will be life-changing for everyone involved.

While everyone appears to see this movie as a commentary on wealth inequality, my personal takeaways were instead the following:

  • The higher you go in life, the more you will be targeted by manipulators
  • If you don't cure your insecurity and learn how manipulators act and think, you will be brought down
  • There are people in life who have no qualms about anything, even targeting your health and life if that helps them go forward
  • Learn power-dynamics, defense and aggression, or else what you build will not last
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Thank you, Bel!

Heard that movie a lot, but now I actually have a reason to watch it 🙂

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Well,  I mentioned this in another thread, so my apologies for being repetitive, but this is a fantastic movie for exploring power and manipulation, not to mention the messy and confusing interplay of power games and genuine human connection.....  oh, and it's damn funny too...


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