Newest Review: ... (facial) resemblance to The Governator (Arnold Schwarzenegger), Brolin is highly convincing. He's particularly effective as the older Bush... more
Rarely Is The Question Asked,"Is Our Children Learning?"
Member Name: lilmsnaughty79
Disadvantages: Not Involving Enough
Rarely Is The Question Asked,'Is Our Children Learning?'
George W Bush was a very controversial President. When America is attacked on the infamous September 11th attacks in 2001 the world changes and a war on terror is declared by the administration and it's allies, including of course Britain making him a hate figure for many.
This film is a look at his earlier life and presidency.
Oliver Stone has a history of making films about US Presidents, in the past he has made JFK and my favourite Nixon. It seemed almost inevitable
that he wouldn't be able to resist taking a good look at George Bush. I was impressed with Nixon and JFK, I know that there are no doubt some
inaccuracies in both but I found them both very entertaining so I was expecting something along the same lines. In Nixon there was a feeling of
darkness and mystery that gives the film depth, but Bush is such a shallow person in life (or that's how he comes across in public at least)
that to make anything as compelling is difficult.
Unfortunately I was disappointed. I found the film to be hollow, and started to lose interest about half way through. It's not the performances that let it down, I think on the whole they were very good. The 2001 terror attacks are thankfully not exploited by Stone with presidential events being portrayed generally after the event, concentrating on the planned invasion of Iraq. Probably the most interesting scene in the entire movie is a meeting where the motives for the war in the middle east are revealed (Stone's assumed motives).
Josh Browlin who I find very watchable in most things is very good as Bush, he doesn't look all that much like him but gets his mannerisms down well,
must as Anthony Hopkins does in Nixon. James Cromwell plays his father and previous president George HW Bush, he again kind of looks like him and
gets the mannerisms down quite well, if not as well as Brolin. Even Tom Hank's son Colin gets a role here, although I didn't realise who he was when I first watched it.
The best performance in terms of getting the likeness nailed has to be Richard Dreyfuss as Dick Cheney. He get's the look and mannerisms down just right, especially the hunch. Jeffery Wright does a good job as the downtrodden Colin Powell.
I think the biggest mistake Stone has made with this film is making it too soon, not enough time has passed to evaluate Bush Jr's legacy and therefore it comes across as a self indulgent swipe at Bush and his administration. The strangest thing about the film for me is the ending, or lack of one, it just seems to end. Thinking back I can sort of understand ending on one of Bush's bumbling moments, but this makes the film appear too one sided. If you want something entertaining about George W bush then just watch the shoe thrower video on youtube or many of his "Bushisms" they still make me laugh.
Main Cast List
Josh Brolin - George W. Bush
Toby Jones - Karl Rove
Dennis Boutsikaris - Paul Wolfowitz
Jeffrey Wright - Colin Powell
Thandie Newton - Condoleezza Rice
Scott Glenn - Donald Rumsfeld
Richard Dreyfuss - Dick Cheney
Directed By : Oliver Stone
Running Time : 129 Mins.
Certificate : 15
Summary: The Life Of Times Of A President