Movie Believe boring, disappointing

I knew this flick would dump on mlm, and I went to see it with high hopes because I figured if nothing else, we’d promote it to all New Schoolers as a way to tell their prospects: This is how we do NOT do this business.

But alas, the old style revival meetings depicted in the movie, based on the director’s Amway experiences years ago, were so dated – they represent a bygone era. No doubt some people still act this way, but we are no longer the naive audiences of 20 years ago. It’s a much more skeptical marketplace today and there’s no way anyone but the most backwards of folks would fall for the stuff shown in the movie.

At the end of the screening, I asked the writer-director Loki Mulholland if he thought he might want to appeal to the 13 million networkers by including a scene showing how some people are doing the business in much better ways…to contrast with the slimy methods shown in the movie.

“Well,” he said, “one or two mlm company types have already told me they’d use this to show their reps how NOT to do the business.” “But,” he added, “why focus on 13 million networkers anyway when there are 100 million others out there?”

I came prepared to promote the film on my blog, and to buy 1,000 DVDs to give away as “here’s how we don’t do it” items. Instead, I saw a mediocre flick by a guy who wants to settle old scores, and play to “everyone but network marketers.”

His request to the audience: If you have horror stories, please tell us and we’ll include them. Geez, thanks. We didn’t see enough in the movie?

What he doesn’t seem to get is that most of those ‘everyone elses’ he’s dreaming about don’t care enough about our field to go see a movie or buy a DVD about it. Especially a mediocre one at best.

We do. And to turn us off is to lose his best audience of all.

About the author

Kim Klaver


  • Yes, I remember becoming involved in my first mlm which was in fact, Amway, and being very excited about the possibility of realising some of my lifelong dreams. But alas, the person doing the presentation didn’t understand I wasn’t after a mansion or a boat. All I could see was a dressage horse and 2 German Shorthaired Pointer pups. I did join and I tapped into the personal growth side of what the company offered and I now see those years as my schoolrooms of learning.

    I’m with a different mlm company now and it is a roller coaster ride, no doubt, but I’m happily and firmly strapped in and not about to jump ship because of some goofy movie.

    Hmmmm…. I have just had another look at my Company’s marketing plan too. I can’t see a level for complainers, whiners or quitters. There’s lots of space though for those who are willing students and have a desire to grow to become a person who attracts like-minded people into their organisation.

    It’s not about the ‘million dollars’. It’s about becoming a person who deserves the million dollars by adding ‘value’ to the marketplace. And I don’t believe that crowd would contain anyone who lives life by constantly looking in the rear-vision mirror like Mr Mulholland seems to want to do.

  • Well said, Kim. I don’t think we need to worry to much about it. We are getting plenty of good reviews.

    “The best-kept secret of the business world…An industry with steady annual growth, healthy cash flows, high return on invested capital, and long-term prospects for global expansion.” __ Fortune Magazine

    “Your industry promotes core values all around the globe and gives people a chance to make the most of their lives.” _ Bill Clinton (former US President.)

    British Prime Minister Tony Blair declaired that, “it makes a tremendous contribution to the overall prosperity of the economy.”

    Billionaire investor Warren Buffett called it simply, “the best investment ever made”.

    Fortune Magazine: “Forget the paycheck. Your W2 days are over. It’s a 1099 world now.

    So there you go. Why worry about a mediocre movie that nobody will go see anyways ;o)

  • A short open letter to Loki Mulholland:

    Dear Mr. Mulholland,

    I am very sorry you had a bad experience with a network marketing company. There are, it seems, bad apples in any bunch. Take Enron, for example. Does the existence and downfall of Enron mean that all energy companies are evil? Hardly. Does one bad meal at a resturant mean that all resturants, or even THAT one, are all bad? Again, I don’t think so. Try another resturant. Heck, try a different entree at the same resturant. You may be surprised with what you find.


    The New School of Network Marketing

    **With appologies to KK for the outright theft of the “New School” name.**

  • Felt negative energy when I visited the do not call web site, so am not surprised at your review of the movie at all, Kim. One thing to criticize, quite another to work to clean things up – and no one is doing it better or with more passion than you.

  • Maybe it just comes down to experiences.

    I can tell you I’ve met a long list of “Mark Fullers” who play the “fake it till you make it” and “I love you, you love me” nonsense. I’ve also met plenty of clueless network marketers who are dishing out nonsense advice and dancing around the point instead of answering questions. In short… I’ve seen all too often those who act like the movie portrays (or at least in the trailers as I’m in Canada therefore have no seen the movie).

    While I’m sure Loki is yet another anti-MLM individual rather a rational businessman who seens the strengths of this profession… I’m not sure that the movie itself is only a vendetta. It is, afterall, accurate.

    Kim, I’d love to agree that the majority of the industry doesn’t behave in this manner, but that’s just not what I see out there.

    I support NM and am certainly very much involved in it… but it has its flaws and most of them are found in Believe (from what I can tell). – Rob Toth

  • I caught the Topeka screening of Believe and found it an immensely accurate portrayal of the MLM industy.

    I have been successfully involved in MLMs for over 15 years, as both a corporate employee and a distributor. Through my experience as a distributor I have been able to fulfill many lifelong dreams and ambitions. As an employee I have been able to help others succeed.

    That being said, Mr. Mulholland hit the nail right on the head with his movie.

    True he was playing off stereotypes, but it was afterall a movie — a spoof, a send-up, a parody; stereotypes are what makes this type of thing work because we can all relate.

    The movie was anything but boring, it was highly entertaining with many laugh out loud moments and other moments of pain due to the reality of the potrayal.

    The image of MLMs that he shows is unfortunately not “old school” but very much the way things happen today. Within the last month I attended a convention/rally that was so much like the one in Believe that it scared me.

    Not everyone has changed in the way they approach network marketing. There are still “Mark Fuller” slimeballs out there, there are plenty of “Howard Flash” hypocrites. These are the people most people still think of when they think of MLM. That or those who have failed.

    Rather than railing on this movie, we in the industy should embrace it. It is a great training tool. As a wiseman once told me: “No one is completely worthless, they can always serve as a bad example”.

    I recommend you take your downlines to see this film — so they know how not to act and they understand how non-network marketers see the industry.

    Lane Bullough

  • I saw this movie last night in Cleveland Ohio.

    A friend had free tickets and I had a free night.

    I did a google search on the movie this morning and found this blog.

    I am not a film expert, but I really liked the movie. It made me laugh.

    I have been very unsuccessful in multi level marketing.

    I have tried Amway, NuSkin, Melaluca, Neways, Young Living, Primerica and I am currently involved with Xango.

    I still believe that I will succeed at some point.

    I liked the movie because it reflected experiences I have had from the mid 70’s to the present.

    I admit that not all were as extreme as shown in the movie. But it was true to me.

    This doesn’t make me want to quit network marketing. It made me want to work harder. Plus it made me laugh. Wasn’t that the point?

    Thank you Kim for your efforts in making the industry and individuals better.

  • Loki Mulholland mentioned Kim Klavers by name during the screening of his movie Believe in Columbus. He said you rose quiet a ruckus at one of his screnings.

    Good for you!

    He is riding on the stereotypes created by a minority of people in the industry. I have made my living exclusively from multi level marketing since 1986 abd I hope I was never like the people he showed in his movie.

    I have met people like the one slick guy in the movie, but in my experiencd there are not that many like that, most are good people trying to improve their lives and succeeeding.

    I thought there was some very funny pooints in the movie, even some i coulld relate to. I even thought that I would like to see it again.

    He said that the manon thestreet parts were actual people he randomly talkied to. Maybe I will go talk to people and ask them what they think about mlm.

  • Is this site for real? Are these comments for real? LOL! This feels like another part of the movie Believe! I BELIEVE! I BELIEVE! This site was better than the clips and trailers for the movie and the movie itself. Have you no self awareness or ability to see that you are all the epitome of the emperor with no clothes? W.C. Fields words were never more true: “Never let a sucker keep his/her money…”

Leave a Comment