Starring: Tim Robbins
This “mockumentary” tells the story of Bob Roberts – a chart-topping folksinger who is a right-winger coopting 1960s liberal ideals in order to mount a conservative bid for the Senate. Strumming his guitar and blowing his harmonica, he then lashes out at the liberals for ruining his country.
Starring: Dustin Hoffman, Robert De Niro
By an interesting coincidence, Wag the Dog – the movie about a president who manufactures a war to cover up a scandal – was released at the moment when the United States was going to war and the world was meeting Monica Lewinsky. In real life, when the White House started impeachment proceedings, President Bill Clinton ordered an air strike on Iraq. And Gabriner – a film hound – says, “With Capra gone, we get cynical movies about politics.”
Starring: Halle Berry, Warren Beatty
A despondent senator who is running for re-election decides that he has nothing to lose after he has hired a hit man to put him out of his misery. So he starts telling the truth – shock of all shocks. Senator Bulworth is everything that all people wish a real politician would be: honest, fun, and straight-talking. But Warren, just a bit of advice: “You’re believable as a politician, but not as a rapper.”
- State of the Union
Starring: Katharine Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Angela Lansbury
State of the Union is another Capra classic, a love triangle, and also smoky back-room negotiations. It follows an industrialist, having an affair with a newspaper publisher, being asked to run for president. In real life, former actor Ronald Reagan later borrowed the movie line “I’m paying for this microphone” in his campaignin 1980.
- The Seduction of Joe Tynan
Starring: Alan Alda, Meryl Streep
Which is more important: Family or family values? And can a pure guy survive in politics? Senator Tynan (played by Alan Alda) gets seduced by power, and by the character of Meryl Streep.