The other party is in disarray. Five men vie for the party nomination for president. No one has a majority as the first ballot closes and the front-runners begin to decide how badly they want the job. Written by
John Vogel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Several times, stock footage of actual political rally doesn't match scenes shot especially for movie. In several shots, no one is sitting in upper seats of auditorium that are nonetheless packed in newsreel footage of same alleged event. See more »
President Art Hockstader:
Major Bascomb... do I understand, by the way you are slowly beating around the bush, that Joe Cantwell is what we used to call a dee-generate?
Yes, sir. That's just what I'm saying.
I don't believe it. No man with that awful wife and those ugly children could be anything but normal.
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During the opening credits, a picture of every single U.S. President appears in order, from George Washington to Lyndon Johnson. See more »
The Great Lee Tracy Actually Gets To Curse On screen
What a pleasure to see Lee Tracy in his later years! He plays a President who is terminally ill-- not that Conservative, mudslinging candidate Cliff Robertson cares about his health.
The movie has some weird, faux cinema verite angles. It may not be great art as a movie. But what a screenplay, courtesy of Gore Vidal! Rarely are audiences treated to such literate dialogue and politic insight and wisdom.
Henry Fonda is very good as the upright candidate in a primary. Margaret Leighton, whom I love, is charming as his wife, though it's odd that a senator would have a British-accented wife.
Robertson, not a particular favorite generally, is superb as his rival. His tactics make the flesh crawl.
Kevin McCarthy as Fonda's aid is very good. Edie Adams as a political hostess is a scream -- and she seems just right.
And Tracy. He is both funny and touching. What a splendid actor that man was! In so many early movies, he delivered long, elegant bits of dialogue in what seemed to be a single take. That guy was load with talent. What a shame he self-destructed. But here he was, back again.
This is one of a kind and most definitely worth a visit.
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