Saturday, 5 April 2014

Game Change

Lowdown: The story of the McCain presidential campaign and its choice of Sarah Palin as deputy.
The 2008 American elections had more buzz around them than usual. The most obvious reason was the fact a black guy was running, and a promising black guy at that (for the sake of this post I will avoid discussing the disappointment this guy turned out to be, regardless of skin color). The other reason for these elections being more interesting than usual was the fact Americans were on the brink of voting a person I would generally label a moron into the White House in deputy role. I am talking, of course, of Sarah Palin. How such a person got into such a historical position is the story of the film Game Change.
Game Change revolves around three characters. First there is the McCain campaign manager, whom we witness being recruited for the role while in his tracksuit (Woody Harrelson). Then there is his boss, John McCain, the Republican candidate for presidency (Ed Harris). McCain faces a problem: he has to bring an unconventional candidate for deputy or he's guaranteed to lose the race, given Obama's talents at gathering money from his supporters as well as Obama's general attractiveness. The trick the McCain campaign is trying to pull is the offering of a woman; and in the limited list of electable women they can find, Sarah Palin (Julianne Moore) seems to be the best candidate. So Palin it is.
The real drama starts when Palin gets exposed to the media. The woman that seemed the powerful governor from Alaska, the mother of four, comes out as dumb and archaic. Obviously, this is a problem for the campaign, a problem around which the bulk of Game Change revolves. Now, we all know how the story ended; therefore, the Game Change tries to attract us not through dramatic surprises, but rather through building a strong platform for the talented actors to perform on. And perform they do, especially Moore.
The result is more than good; Game Change is a very interesting human drama. McCain himself is portrayed as almost faultless, while Palin is the virtual negative image of her superior.
I do find it interesting to note this actor's drama was directed by Jay Roach, with whom I was mostly familiar through the Austin Powers trilogy. Let us just say that Game Change is a significantly different movie to Austin Powers.
Overall: An actors' drama that is rewarding to watch even when we know how it all ends. Or did it? Should we worry about a Palin comeback? 3.5 out of 5 stars.

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