Number of Times Seen – Twice (22 Apr 2008 and 2 Jan 2019)
Brief Synopsis – An intimate look at the life, Presidency and paranoia of Richard Nixon.
My Take on it – I have always been a fan of Oliver Stone’s film’s especially when he is able to deliver some great conspiracy theory stories.
In this film, he goes a bit overboard and depicts Nixon as a monster right from the start and doesn’t even attempt to make the character sympathetic or try to keep the story balanced at all for such a controversial storyline.
Anthony Hopkins does a superb job in the title role and truly immerses himself in the character that despite the various physical differences, its easy to eventually believe that this is Nixon. He was nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor for this role as was Joan Allen for her role as his wife in the Supporting Actress category.
Hopkins is helped by such a vast and prolific supporting cast who help us get into the mood for the story.
The film itself drags a bit too much and I think that 210 minutes is a bit too much for such a story to stay interesting throughout and it ultimately hinders things as opposed to helping them.
Stone is a great Director and writer, but in this instance, he goes a it overboard and that affects the outcome of such a storyline.
Bottom Line – Epic biography of Nixon’s life but it tries too hard to make him look like a monster and doesn’t even attempt to keep things balanced. Hopkins is superb in the lead since he immerses himself in the role and is helped by such a prolific and vast cast of supporting players. Hopkins and Allen were both nominated for acting Oscars for this film yet neither won. The film drags a bit too much at certain points and 3 and a half ours might be too long for a film like this and ultimately hurts the film more than helps it. Stone is a great director, but sometimes even he can go a bit overboard with his style of film-making.
MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Sir Anthony Hopkins casting as Richard Nixon initially met with much criticism. Early in the shoot, Paul Sorvino had lunch with Hopkins and offered suggestions as to how Hopkins should replicate Nixon’s accent. This made Hopkins so nervous, he actually quit the production, though Oliver Stone begged him to stay on. Upon the film’s release, Hopkins’ performance garnered much praise, and even an Oscar nomination. (From IMDB)
Rating – BAFTA Worthy (6/10)
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