Tag Archives: U.S. Politics

Shock and Awe

THE TRUTH MATTERS. Shortly after 9/11, a group of Washington reporters find out that the Bush Administration is preparing to attack Iraq based on lies and faulty intelligence. This story is interesting as a reminder for reporters to always dig deeper and not just blindly trust the most obvious sources. But as a movie it … Continue reading Shock and Awe

Veep: Echoing the Age of Trump

In my review of the fabulous comedy In the Loop (2009), directed and co-written by Armando Iannucci who went on to create Veep for American television, I mentioned how the sadness and anger seep through the concept. That film, along with virtually everything else Iannucci has done, depicts politics as a heartless game where all … Continue reading Veep: Echoing the Age of Trump

The People Vs. Larry Flynt: A Smut Peddler’s Triumph

YOU MAY NOT LIKE WHAT HE DOES, BUT ARE YOU PREPARED TO GIVE UP HIS RIGHT TO DO IT? The war on pornography is reignited now and then, usually by people with a poor understanding of the democratic values that guarantee pornography’s right to exist. Regardless if they’re religious right-wingers or misguided feminists, they attack … Continue reading The People Vs. Larry Flynt: A Smut Peddler’s Triumph

Vice

THE UNTOLD TRUE STORY THAT CHANGED THE COURSE OF HISTORY. In 2015, Adam McKay successfully depicted the 2008 financial crisis in The Big Short; this is another satirical look at a dark chapter in American political history. The rise of Dick Cheney gets a completely irreverent treatment, with amusingly dim-witted and mean-spirited performances by Sam … Continue reading Vice

House of Cards: Underwood’s Underworld

There were people who hated House of Cards right from the start. Some were political analysts who didn’t find any of the outlandish events on the show credible. Others considered the cynical tone unappealing and sort of unhelpful in a world that was becoming increasingly ugly; did we really need a show where every politician … Continue reading House of Cards: Underwood’s Underworld

The Front Runner

THE WEEK AMERICA WENT TABLOID.  As Democratic senator Gary Hart (Hugh Jackman) embarks in 1987 on another campaign for the presidency, reporters get wind of a possible extramarital affair… Matt Bai’s book showed us how American journalism was transformed because of the ”Monkey Business” scandal, but the impact is lessened onscreen, perhaps because we’ve seen … Continue reading The Front Runner

Manchurian Candidate: Agent Solitaire

IF YOU COME IN FIVE MINUTES AFTER THIS PICTURE BEGINS, YOU WON’T KNOW WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT! WHEN YOU’VE SEEN IT ALL, YOU’LL SWEAR THERE’S NEVER BEEN ANYTHING LIKE IT! This movie ran into bad luck. Or was it really that bad? It’s been said sometimes that The Manchurian Candidate was pulled from distribution when … Continue reading Manchurian Candidate: Agent Solitaire

I Am Not Your Negro

In the 1970s, the American writer James Baldwin gathered notes and letters for a manuscript called ”Remember This House”, but it was never finished. This documentary was based on it, with Samuel L. Jackson reading the notes as the voice of Baldwin. He’s a hypnotic presence throughout. If you’re not familiar with Baldwin this is … Continue reading I Am Not Your Negro

The Final Year

THE CLOCK IS TICKING. The director, who’s made several documentaries about America’s role in the world, got access to President Barack Obama and his foreign-policy team during the administration’s last year. We follow Obama himself, Secretary of State John Kerry, U.N. ambassador Samantha Power, Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes and others as they deal … Continue reading The Final Year

The Post: Birth of a National Newspaper

Steven Spielberg felt an urgency. At a time when the United States had elected a president who made it one of his top priorities to attack the free press, to label any newspaper or TV network that had any kind of critical coverage of his administration ”fake news”, we needed a movie that stood by … Continue reading The Post: Birth of a National Newspaper