The Joneses – The MLM Game

by Rebecca

Have you ever watched a movie that you had no expectations but was surprised by the effect it has on you?

The Jones with David Duchovny & Demi Moore was one for me.

I discovered a profound underlying theme. If you don’t want the movie ruined for you.. I would suggest that you stop reading now.. but for those who have seen it.. continue reading on (ps. I warned you.. if you haven’t seen it.. you will regret reading further :)

As you know the premise is about a “family” that move into an established wealthy neighborhood. The effect from the arrival of this new family is rather blatant. I find the dichotomy of the first meeting of neighbors quite interesting.

First you have the neighbor who is a shy woman, “telling” herself that she can make it in her MLM, having her dream book to keep her on track and turning away from her own partner to “pursue” the Jones’ American dream. She encourages herself to be brave and approach her neighbors with a “gift”. This type of selling is encouraged by the average network marketing machines using rather weak selling techniques that rip your brain and rape your personal wallet and ruin personal friendships.

In reality we are willing to work but what stops us is the undercurrent of knowing we may potentially ruin relationships or have a stigma related to us because of being in network marketing.

Summer Symonds (the neighbor)  like most network marketers who craves the other side of the door, tours The Jones home and drools over what she doesn’t have. Everything is staged to create discontent. Summer turns her husband away to focus on her dreams next door. Little does she realize that what she craves is an empty shell that looks really pretty on the outside but empty inside.

We rarely take the time to decipher what we see aligns with our desires and does it exist on the platform we think it does.

The ones who sell the dream are also the embodiment of the shell. They have what every one wants. To be unique and different. To be one of a kind, be popular, have lots of money for the creature comforts of home. On the outside it is beautiful and wonderful. The inside is a different story.

Inside there is drive to succeed, loneliness, lying to oneself and wishing someone would value you for who you are not for what you have. This drive is so strong that you can miss the opportunity for happiness that stares you in the face, the difficulties in bridging the gap of relationships, denying the truth of who you are and feeling shell shocked when you aren’t loved.

The multi-layers of this movie are enticing. I find it most fascinating how they nailed the psychology and marketing. They used visual close-ups of products in everyday situations by focusing on one unique aspect that was blatant enough that if others didn’t have it.. they REALLY craved it. The insinuation of products reward behavior. How lack of a product in your life is the solution to your unhappiness or boredom. How products can fill the void in relationships. All manufactured to create malcontent sales. If you approach sales from the customers perspective then you and they win.

The saddest part of the movie (warning-movie saboteur) is Larry discovers that nothing will fix his relationship with his wife. Buying stuff still doesn’t make Summer happy and now everything they have has been risked over stuff and what they have is now lost.

Sacrificing their finances over things creates disharmony in their relationships leads to suicide is a sobering metaphor. It makes me question.

If both sides of the game are manufactured so that you can’t win what keeps you bound to the one thing that can’t be filled from the outside? So what did you think of the movie?

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