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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Quick Film Snob Focus: Mr. President

If you happened to have your television turned on last night, or looked at a newspaper this morning, you may have heard that the President gave a little speech yesterday, and no, it wasn't about the iPad.

Obama delivered the address in his typical Obama style, and it got me thinking about how the office of the Presidency has been portrayed in film, as any movie featuring POTUS usually has them delivering at least one speech with some serious gravitas. With no further ado:

President: Danny Glover as Thomas Wilson (2012), Bill Pullman as Thomas J. Whitmore (Independence Day).
Movies: Roland Emmerich's disaster pics "2012" and "Independence Day"
Style: Both Presidents are family men that are faced with ridiculous pressure, be it aliens or Mayan prophecies. Pullman responds by rousing the troops and flying a jet, Glover responds by taking one for the team and getting wiped off the face of the earth by the USS John F Kennedy.
Typical Quote: "I'm a combat pilot, Will. I belong in the air."
Most Like: George W Bush likes to think of himself as a combat pilot, but was more likely to be swept away by the proverbial tide in execution of his duties.

President: Alan Alda as an unnamed President
Movie: Michael Moore's foray into scripted comedy and satire, as well as John Candy's last screen performance, "Canadian Bacon".
Style: Comically inept. His aides and generals run the show, and he's better suited for hosting a talk show than running the country - the end credit titles inform us he began hosting "Good Morning, Cleveland" after losing his bid for re-election.
Typical Quote: "It's time to turn off that war machine, and turn on our children."
Most Like: Although there are similarities to 43, Alda's goofy innocence screams Jimmy Carter.

President: Kevin Kline as presidential impersonator-turned-President Bill Mitchell
Movie: Ivan Reitman's 1993 presidential rom-com "Dave".
Style: Practical, smooth-talking, no-nonsense. 'Dave' always is able to cut the tension with some quick wit.
Typical Quote: [when balancing the budget]: "I don't want to tell some eight-year-old kid he's got to sleep in the street so somebody can feel better about their car. Do you want to tell them that?"
Most Like: Last night B.O. had a lot of straight talk and quick wit too.

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