6.8/10
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216 user 75 critic

The American President (1995)

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Comedy-drama about a widowed U.S. president and a lobbyist who fall in love. It's all above-board, but "politics is perception" and sparks fly anyway.

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3,226 ( 814)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Storyline

Andrew Shepherd is approaching the end of his first term as President of the United States. He's a widower with a young daughter and has proved to be popular with the public. His election seems assured. That is until he meets Sydney Ellen Wade, a paid political activist working for an environmental lobby group. He's immediately smitten with her and after several amusing attempts, they finally manage to go on a date (which happens to be a State dinner for the visiting President of France). His relationship with Wade opens the door for his prime political opponent, Senator Bob Rumson, to launch an attack on the President's character, something he could not do in the previous election as Shepherd's wife had only recently died. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Why can't the most powerful man in the world have the one thing he wants most?

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some strong language | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

17 November 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mi querido presidente  »

Box Office

Budget:

$62,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£1,132,043 (UK) (15 December 1995)

Gross:

$65,000,000 (USA)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The music President Shepherd and Ms. Wade dance to is the song "I Have Dreamed" from the musical "The King and I" with music by Richard Rodgers and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II. Ironically, Sydney had previously stated she had no intention of "Whistl[ing] a happy tune" (another King and I reference) when led by their President. See more »

Goofs

At the State Dinner, the French President is talking face to the camera, while the audience can watch Sydney's turning her ring around the finger - a second later, the camera shows Sydney in front, still listening to the President's story, but keeps her hands straight now. See more »

Quotes

President Andrew Shepherd: I want to buy her some flowers. That's what men do when they break a date.
Robin McCall: That's not what men do. I know no men who do that.
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Connections

References Dr. Seuss on the Loose (1973) See more »

Soundtracks

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
Arranged by Robert Shaw and Alice Parker
Performed by Robert Shaw Chorale
Courtesy of RCA Victor Red Seal, a division of BMG Classics
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User Reviews

 
Tries to do both, falls flat
26 October 2003 | by (Orange County, CA) – See all my reviews

Rob Reiner used to put out some darn funny satires. Unfortunately for this film, he didn't even try. On the one hand is the syrupy, fluff story of a widowed president falling in love with an activist. In other words, a chick flick. Then it switches gears by ramming left-wing rhetoric down your throat and attempting to make itself an "important" film. Not only can the fluffier aspect not mesh well with the "serious" portion, but it also effectively alienates half the audience, as well as everyone else who went in expecting a light romance and got a nice helping of propaganda instead. I'm amazed this later shaped into the West Wing, but at least that series is not hampered by trying to do too many things at once. While still left-wing in rhetoric, the weekly format allows it to switch gears more effectively and thus makes itself more palatable for entertainment. Trying to cram that into a movie fails miserably. If you're looking for a good, light presidential comedy, go rent "Dave." If you're looking for something more meaningful, skip this one.


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