Directed by Franklin Schaffner. US. 1964. NR. 102 min. MGM. 35mm.
- Sun, Aug 19, 2:00 pm
In this film, based upon the stage play by Gore Vidal, we again have Henry Fonda heading up a top-flight cast. This time, Fonda is pitted against a ruthless Cliff Robertson, but both men have deep, dark secrets, in a close contest for their party’s presidential nomination. Lee Tracy, after over thirty years as a film character actor, was deservedly nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for this, his final role, playing a dying president who has to decide which man to endorse. Vidal, who also wrote the screenplay, provides intense and often witty dialogue, in what has been described by the London Radio Times as, “a scabrous look at the underbelly of Washington.” Watch it and get a sense of what might easily be taking place behind all those political ads that currently fill the airwaves. (Bill Roth)