January 10, 2009

Frost / Nixon

Finally got to see Frost/Nixon. Enjoyed it a lot. Nixon was the first president I remember getting elected, the first candidate I remember talking about in school where we lined up behind political candidates like non-football fans picking a team based on mascots or team colors.

Langella was pretty incredible as Nixon (a difficult role since those of us of a certain age remember Nixon so well, and he became such a caricature). I thought the playwright and filmmakers did a nice job of adding some depth and texture to the story And though the critics have had issues with the film's accuracy, I thought it was a good story, well told. A welcome flashback to the 70's.

My film buddy (Kimi, to those who follow the blogs) and I discussed the way Frost was presented - was he a gadfly, a lightweight who toughened up at the end? Was he a cagey interviewer who laid back for the first part of the interviews and then sprung a trap? Or was he over his head throughout and really let Nixon off the hook?

There is a political meme out there "Only Nixon could go to China". And maybe only someone perceived as a lightweight, someone holding out a pile of cash, could have brought Nixon to the interview.

Also, whoever cast this thing must have something against Diane Sawyer - while her involvement in the Nixon administration is a matter of record that perhaps Ms. Sawyer would be happy to have not brought back into the spotlight, Kate Jennings Grant is made up to be a most unattractive, nerdish version of the celebrity journalist.

Maybe we all looked kind of awkward in the 70s....I know I did.

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