Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Frost/Nixon Review

I wouldn't normally care to write a review of any movie, but an interesting thing has been happening to me since I started to both blog and microblog. I have a strong compulsion to share and review and rank just about every new or unique experience I find myself in.

My wife went out with her friends. I just put the kids to bed. I had two movie options from a free month of Blockbuster's answer to NetFlix. I checked in on twitter and facebook real quick and posed a quick question and asked for my friends to decide which movie. I got 8 responses on twitter and 7 on facebook. Frost/Nixon won with the immediate responses. Andy Stuart, Matthew Slay, and Jason Mitchell came in with late votes for Milk, making the overall race much closer. But the responding crowd had spoken! Joshua Quiring asked for a review so I am compelled to oblige as thanks for his part in the conversation.

Frost/Nixon was great.
Moving, emotional, full of soul and questions, human.
Great piece of casting, especially in the role of Nixon. Frank Langella made me forget that I wasn't watching Nixon himself.

I was born the same year Nixon resigned, so I don't have any personal recollection of watergate, the impending impeachment, or the press coverage following the resignation. This one one of those portrayals that makes you want to go read some history about the subject matter. Here is the youtube clip you want to see after watching the movie.

What I love about the story that was portrayed in this film was that Nixon struggled, and hid, and dodged his own soul, and finally found redemption in the truth. What a great theme.
The stuff of many great stories.

Unfortunately, the satisfaction you get as a viewer of this story didn't actually happened that way for Nixon. The text that scrolls the screen at the end of the movie gives you a hint of what the truth was. If Nixon did find personal redemption, he never let that be seen in the public eye. He avoided the general dignitary public appearances of all other expresidents. I wonder if he was as forthcoming in the actual interview, he may have found the kind of redemption he brushed in the movie portrayal.

Either way, the movie is well worth your time.
And for those of you who voted Milk (most of which were friends from San Francisco that I grew up with) I will definitely make time to watch it as well.