RR Movies: US Presidents

Well, the first debate has happened, so the race is definitely on. Let’s get this out of the way now: US Presidents.

There have been plenty of ’em, both real and fictional, with a President in both serious and comedy roles (Jack Nicholson in Mars Attacks! comes to mind) but I’ll suggest Anthony Hopkins’ turn as Nixon, in all his sweaty, paranoid deviousness.

What presidential films would you recommend?

20 thoughts on “RR Movies: US Presidents

  1. It surely has to be President Merkin Muffley, played by peter Sellers in Dr. Strangelove. The characterisation was apparently based upon Adlai Stevenson.

    Alternatively, on a similar theme, Henry Fonda plays the unnamed President in Fail-safe.

    Both films came out in 1964.

  2. There is this comedy called Dick about the so-called reasons behind Nixon’s exit. Quite funny and W by Oliver Stone which was okay. Would shoehorn Being There into this topic.

  3. I don’t believe I’ve seen any that I can remember, not even All the President’s Men. You couldn’t have paid me enough to watch that shitshow last night either.

    • My translator friend was paid to watch it. A bit of an ordeal, even for a 30 minute segment: But she was well-paid and is now on holiday to recover 😀

      I asked if it was difficult and translated straight:

      “[Trump’s] Speech is basically simple, but elliptical sentences make it a bit challenging.
      We all did just that: translation equivalents that matched the stupidity of the originals”

      • I said if you paid me $675,000, I would suffer through all 3 debates. (That’s what Clinton got paid to make 3 speeches to Goldman Sachs.)

      • I watched the first one, just to see the future for myself. Yes, HRC is a dyed-in-the-wool establishment figure who is well aware of her ability to acquire bucks and who has an arrogant view of her own abilities…. but Trump is all that turned up to 11, no 12.
        He supposedly champions the little man (not little woman, obviously), yet he spent much of the debate saying how much he owns and how he’s happy to ‘use the existing laws’ to screw people out of payments and the government out of taxes (he didn’t deny he pays no federal tax at all).
        He has implemented double-think and, if elected, will see it as the biggest business opportunity he’s ever had, making the rest of the world pay for the USA Police Service (they call that a protection racket in other contexts), giving all his wealthy mates huge tax breaks and, when it fails, blaming everything on immigrants/Muslims/Latinos/blacks/women….

        Hillary may have her faults but she at least understands the concept of public service. Trump – simply on the evidence of one debate – only understands self-interest.

      • Chris, I live here. That view of Clinton is far too charitable. She and her husband are as corrupt as they come. And she’s a Warhawk to boot. Public service my ass, only one actually served is herself and her donors.

      • And fwiw, I still have no idea who I’m voting for, I just know it’s neither of those two. My vote is irrelevant anyway, I’m in a solid blue state. I have no senators up for reelection, and my house rep is running unopposed. I will vote for my two Sanders supporting state legislature ladies, and on the state referendums.

      • Yeah, obviously I’m a little distanced from it all but, even if HRC doesn’t selflessly dedicate herself to public service, I believe she does understand what it is. Truly, on the basis of that first debate, Trump doesn’t understand it or think it has any value. He has no plan at all other than ‘let the market rule in all things’.
        I am increasingly reminded of Milo Minderbinder in Catch-22, who was determined to make everyone believe that ‘whatever is good for M&M Enterprises is good for everybody’. Trump appears to have the same arrogant, self-serving view: if I’m OK, then everyone else will be too. He’d like to make the USA into Trump Global Enterprises.

        As to your alternative voting options, it must be a little dispiriting when one of ’em can’t name a single foreign head of state or explain what an ‘aleppo’ is…..

  4. John Frankenheimer directed a couple of the best political thrillers — The Manchurian Candidate and Seven Days in May.

    Hearts and Minds is a great documentary about the Vietnam War which contains a montage of 4 consecutive presidents announcing deeper military involvement in that country. It brings to mind how the previous 4 presidents each announced deeper military involvement in Iraq. I fully expect President Trump or Clinton will make it 5 in a row.

  5. I really liked the Frost/Nixon film. I imagine it wasn’t overly different to the stage play but it worked for me.

    Agree about Being There. I never saw Jefferson in Paris but Thandie Newton was in it so I assume I would have enjoyed it. Plus its screenplay is by Ruth Prawer Jhabvala; the only person ever to have won both a Booker Prize and an Oscar.

  6. OK, Amy, we know that you live, so do I. I think you’re parroting the right wing propaganda that Hilary has been subjected to ever since this campaign began; nay, long before that, since she first came to Washington. You remember the onslaught when they arrived from Arkansas? Do you also endorse all of that also? Whitewater and all?
    The entire episode has been so transparent, so obviously controlled and manipulated by the right wing of the Republicans, in exactly the same manner that they’ve used successfully against Obama for the last 8 years. Churchill nailed it when he said of Hitler, “If you repeat something often enough and long enough, people will come to believe it”. I think he was right.
    If you really think that “She and her husband are as corrupt as they come” give me three specific instances of her corruption.

  7. My favourites would have to be All The Presidents Men, which was brilliantly directed and acted, along with The Manchurian Candidate in which Sinatra gives a superb performance. Also worth a mention is Young Mr Lincoln in which Henry Fonda plays the future President.

  8. Amy: It was a mistake for me to think that I could show you the light. I’ve googled some of the points that you raise only to find several issues that support my point of view, i.e.; most of the publicity re. Hillary and Haiti was propagated by the guy who’s now spokesman for the Buffoon. ABC news is not my news source of choice and a close reading of the NY Times article reveals alternate points of view that I support..
    Like you I’m also a former Democrat who switched to Independent [10 years ago] but this isn’t about party affiliation, it’s about seeing through the smokescreen. I normally wouldn’t vote Demo but this is a special situation. I hope you get some satisfaction from your decision to not vote demo when president Buffoon is staring at you from the White House.

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