Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)

mr. smith“I wouldn’t give you two cents for all your fancy rules if, behind them, they didn’t have a little bit of plain, ordinary, everyday kindness and a little looking out for the other fella, too. ” – Jefferson Smith

Number of Times Seen – at least 5 times (cable, video and 9 Jun 2015)

Brief Synopsis – An honest man is sent to Washington in order to replace a deceased senator under the pretext that he won’t be able to make any changes and onec he understands how things really work, he tries to stop corruption in the halls of Congress

My Take on it – Frank Capra was known for making movies about ordinary people making big changes in the “system” by being true and honest to themselves and everyone around them.

This movie is a perfect example of how endearing those kind of messages can be.  It was very poignant in the waning days of the depression and still resonates today over 75 years later.

This movie shows the US political system for what it is; a system that can work or cause more problems all depending on what the people in control wish to do with that power that they wield.

Even looking at the headlines today, that sentiment still rings true with the fact that there is still corruption on the highest levels of government.

For as long as I can recall, I have been a fan of how US politics works; especially The Presidency and I know for a fact that this movie was one of my earliest influences into enjoying this field of study.

Even after seeing this numerous times, I still get goosebumps during the empowered speech in the halls of Congress towards the end of the movie (like we are suppose to feel)

Bottom Line -A true classic about how the American political system works (and doesn’t work). Capra really found a way to show the people how even the little people can enact change in the “system”. Very interesting how it seems that little has changed when dealing with congressional corruption in the 76 years since this came out.  This is one of the movies that made me very interested in the US political system.  Highly recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Bitterly denounced by Washington insiders angry at its allegations of corruption, yet banned by fascist states in Europe who were afraid it showed that democracy works. (From IMDB)

Rating – Oscar Worthy


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11 thoughts on “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)

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