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James Steven Sadwith
Marcia Gay Harden
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Great production values for a TV miniseries. Director Mike Newell shows great gusto in dealing with groups of people, a trait which became even more evident as he went on to "Enchanted April," "Four Weddings and a Funeral" and "Pushing Tin." The supporting cast does distinguished work.
Cotter Smith is daring in his first venture outside series TV when he borrows so many of Robert Kennedy's unsympathetic mannerisms, and he certainly can't be accused of holding back. Unfortunately, he's missing the undisputed charisma of RFK and worse, he's up against Robert Blake as Hoffa.
Evil is always more interesting than good, and Blake has a lifetime of scene-stealing behind him. He's fifteen years past "In Cold Blood" here, and at the top of his game. He's a madman spouting hypocrisy so well that while he's talking you might believe him. You definitely can't take your eyes off him. In the acting duel, as opposed to real life, Kennedy doesn't stand a chance here.
So it's worthwhile viewing, but remember afterwards, after Kennedy was killed by a Palestinian gunman, RFK's lifetime of work for civil rights and against crime left the world a better place.
And as Jimmy Hoffa slumbers peacefully under the 50-yard line at Meadowlands Stadium, remember that he stole recklessly from his union membership, and connived at far worse crimes than that. Nixon may have pardoned him, but we don't have to.
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