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|Index||210 reviews in total|
I feel for those who had the unenviable job of marketing this movie. Who do you aim it at? Teens, most of whom know nothing about Nixon and Watergate, or adults, who will dismiss it as being another obnoxious, dumb teen comedy? Hence the box office failure. But what true hidden gem this film is! The writers have managed to put elements into this film that will be able to please the entire spectrum of viewers and knowledge of the Watergate scandal is not at all required to enjoy this hilarious film, but if you happen to have a grasp on it's history, your enjoyment will increase tenfold. The performances of everyone involved are top-notch with special notice going to Dan Hedaya (Nixon dead-on)and Michelle Williams (watch her shy expressions and mannerisms as she develops her crush on Nixon. Priceless!). Many, many scenes left me laughing hysterically (the beach dream scene, Haldeman's interrogation of the girls, Hello Dolly meets Breshnev, Bernstein hovering over Woodward at the Post). Add great music, costumes, sets and a fitting ending, and you've got a great movie experience. Don't miss it!!! (And for a treat watch this as a double bill with ALL THE PRESIDENT'S MEN!)
Much time has passed since the Watergate scandal of 1974. In the present
day, we see so many scandals involving upper-crust politicians (including,
but not limited to, the President), that we have become jaded to their
importance. In 1974, though, this scandal marked the first time a
president's authority and character had been publicly questioned.
The two main characters are two 15-year-old girls - one the only offspring
of a single mother (who is played by Teri Garr) and the other the only
sister in a standard nuclear family, complete with a pothead older brother
who's about to be drafted. The events of the times are swirling around these
two young ladies, but we see them all through their eyes. Some of us know
about the events of the early 1970s because we were there, and others of us
know about them through history books or from our elders. But now we get to
see these events as they pertain to two teenagers. It's interesting how the
basic character of a teenager hasn't changed - these girls dismiss Watergate
and Vietnam initially and are more concerned with teen idols, school, and,
well, teenager stuff.
Admittedly, the plot's a little contrived, but it never makes the mistake of
taking itself seriously. One of the girls happens to live in the Watergate
Hotel, and late one night they both innocently learn of the break-in. They
subsequently get to meet many key Watergate players, including Haldemann,
Liddy, Wooodward, Bernstein, Kissinger, and, of course, Nixon himself.
The most amazing thing about this script is that while nothing is really historically revised to tell the tale, the girls' characters are used to supply details of these historical events that may answer some old questions. What happened to the section that Nixon's secretary chopped from the illegal tape? Who was Deep Throat, anyway? The 'answers' to these questions will make you laugh.
As for the acting, it's absolutely perfect. Kirsten Dunst and Michelle Williams are a real treat as the giggly, naive teenage girls. Their characters are very well-written - at no point do they do something that seems out of character. But the biggest treat of all is Dan Hedaya as Nixon. Some people can do Nixon impressions, and some ARE Nixon. Hedaya captures the feel for the ex-President, from his creepy scowl when trying to be friendly to his state of panic when the truth of the scandal finally set in. He's the best thing going in this film, and possibly should be nominated for his work.
I just saw this movie for the first time today and I was so absolutely impressed how FUN it was. The absurd explanations as to what 'may' have gone on during the Watergate scandal?! funny funny funny! Michelle Williams I was particularly impressed with. Her fumbling 15 year old quirks and adolescent insecurities were right on target and I really connected with her character. Myself being only about 9 years old when Watergate happened, I even found myself 'googling' the actual trial and the *real* facts just to re-familiarize myself with what now just seems a sort of faded time warp. Reading the *real* events I found myself feeling patriotic remembering a time that seemed so long ago (Vietnam etc.) but then sadly realizing here we are right smack dab doing what we thought we'd never repeat. (Iraq). But hey, this is supposed to be a Positive review of the film so lets get back on the soul train. I have to say I LOVED the soundtrack!!!! each song was a total flashback of my childhood. "Popcorn" by Hot Butter - "Hooked on a Feeling" by Blue Suede - "Come and Get Your Love" by Redbone - and esp "Loves Theme" by Love Unlimited Orchestra with that sexy unforgettable wakka wakka guitar sound and sadly outdated violin orchestra. Do yourself a favor. Rent this film if you want to enjoy a 90 minute flashback of a very clever send up of of real event. 9 out of 10
This was a huge bomb when it came out in 1999--it was badly advertised and disappeared quickly. That's a shame because it's a very fun movie. If ever a film should be rediscovered, it's this one. Two very dumb teenage girls (beautifully played by Kirsten Dunst and Michelle Williams) in the early 70s, get separated from their tour of the White House, and accidentally meet Nixon. They start walking his dog Checkers and, inadvertently, discover all about Watergate without even knowing it! It sounds silly (and it is) but damned if it doesn't work! Dunst and Williams are totally believable (and very lovable) as the teenagers. Dan Hedaya does a perfect interpretation of Nixon. As for everybody else, I couldn't tell you. I'm no whiz on Watergate and who Nixon's staff was in the 70s. But the script is sharp, everyone has wonderful comic timing and the best bits were done by Will Ferrell and Bruce McCulloch who make Woodward and Bernstein out to be total idiots. Also an excellent selection of 70s songs which always complement the action. The final gag played on Nixon is uproarious! Well worth watching.
I loved Dick! It was one of the funniest movies I've seen in a long time. Kirsten Dunst and Michelle Williams were perfect as two ditzy girls who accidentally get involved in the Watergate scandal. What I really liked about this movie was that it took actual mysteries from the scandal (the 18 1/2 minutes of blank tape, Deep Throat) and gave it a false but hysterical explanation. For those of you who don't like this movie because it gives false information, lighten up!!! Dick is not supposed to be taken seriously! Dick was very entertaining, and hysterically funny. At many parts I laughed so hard I cried. Arlene and Betsy's final action at the end of the movie was the best. I don't remember the last time I laughed so hard.
... for anyone old enough to have seen the Watergate hearings on television
the first time around, or who still remembers people telling Bebe Rebozo
I have no idea how anyone under 35 would react, there were so few at the theatre.
Dave Foley's H.R. Haldeman haircut had me in stitches. You see his scalp; what an unexpected trip down memory lane.
Saul Rubinek was a hoot as Henry Kissinger, although he couldn't quite compare to Paul Sorvino, uncanny in that part in "Nixon".
Everyone's character seemed right on. Exaggerated of course, naturally. Even the two halves of Woodstein, a nice bit of caricature.
The two young girls -- Dunst and Williams -- are stellar. The girls' final action of the movie seemed out of character to me, but that struck the only false note I heard in this funny film.
A good movie that deals with a significant event in history can be
educational as well as entertaining; film is a powerful medium that can put
a fresh perspective on why the world today is as it is, and a movie that
does all of that can be a satisfying and memorable experience. And `Dick,'
directed by Andrew Fleming, is a satisfying and memorable film that
unequivocally does NOT do any of those things. Because it's too busy doing
exactly what it was intended to do: Make you laugh. It's a hilarious
comedy about the Nixon White House and the Watergate affair that finally
answers the questions everyone has been asking since Nixon declared he
wasn't a crook. Like what really happened at the Watergate that night and
who alerted the authorities about the break-in? Who was `Deep throat,' and
why did he use that name? Where did Nixon come up with the idea to flash
his famous `Victory' sign? And what was really on that eighteen-and-a-half
minutes of tape that got erased?
Kirsten Dunst is Betsy Jobs, a normal, everyday teenager whose best friend, Arlene Lorenzo (Michelle Williams), just happens to live at the Watergate. One night at Arlene's place, the girls are frantically working to finish an essay for Arlene to enter in a `Win a date with Bobby Sherman' contest; this is important stuff-- Arlene just HAS to win, but her entry has to be in the mailbox by midnight. They manage to finish in time and rush out to the mailbox, but as they're hurrying down the stairs and into the parking garage, they inadvertently do and then see something that ultimately-- and history buffs take note!-- has a significant impact on the Nixon administration, and consequently on the course of history. But for Betsy and Arlene, it's only the beginning of their personal involvement with the leader of the free world. And all this time later, who knew?
What makes this movie so good is that it's clever without having to force itself on you; the humor is subtle without being too deep, which makes it accessible to just about everyone, as well as enjoyable. You don't have to think too hard to get it, and it doesn't assault you with slapstick, silliness or the grossness that defines so many comedies involving teens today. There's even a parody of Woodward and Bernstein (Will Ferrell and Bruce McCulloch) that works well, and though it's not among the film's most memorable moments, it is funny.
What is memorable about this movie is Dunst and Williams, and especially Dan Hedaya, whose take on Richard Nixon is a dead-on riot. He's got the body language and the mannerisms down pat, and it's a hoot. And the girls are endearingly frivolous; they've got the looks, the attitude and the spirit of everything Teen, to which they bring a carefree depth to their perception of the world and their place in it, kind of like a younger version of Romy and Michele with the freshness of youth and their whole lives ahead of them.
This is a comedy that will appeal to a wide audience and transcend demographics because it's a multi-generational, nonpartisan, funny film. Teens will identify with Betsy and Arlene regardless of the context, and everyone else will be able to relate to the politics and the era on any number of levels. What's important is that it's presented in a light-hearted way, without malice and with the sole purpose of giving you a good time and a lot of laughs (which it certainly does). And it's good clean fun; parents can watch this one with the kids without any fear of embarrassment, and on the other hand, you can take your grandmother to see it, as well.
The supporting cast includes Teri Garr (Helen Lorenzo), Dave Foley (Bob Haldeman), Jim Breuer (John Dean), Ana Gasteyer (Rose Mary Woods), Harry Shearer (G. Gordon Liddy), Saul Rubinek (doing a right-on Henry Kissinger), G.D. Spradlin (Ben Bradlee) and Devon Gummersall (Larry). An uplifting movie with some bona fide laugh-out-loud moments, `Dick' gives a skewing to a serious event and time, but it does it with reverence, respect and good taste, and it emerges as something of a paean to eternal youth and the indomitability of the human spirit in the face of an ever-changing world. In the end, this is a film that will make your heart light and put a smile on your face. And that, without a doubt, is the magic of the movies. I rate this one 9/10.
'Dick' performs an important function - it strips away the quasi-Shakespearean myth that has grown up around its titular anti-hero, and shows the ignoble, slightly insane, diminished (and diminishing) cartoon beneath. 'Dick' is one of the best American satires of the last few decades, while, cherishably, remaining faithful to its genre, the teen movie - the heroines' openness, spontaneity, energy and colour is contrasted with the sleazy murk of Dick's milieu. Their rite-of-passage, as they become sexually aware young women, is linked to the final awakening of America to the dark heart seizing up at its centre. The pun on the title, therefore, is very funny, with all the priapic monuments to presidential power dotting Washington, and leads to a priceless pay-off as Dick flees, humilated , in his helicopter. For such a bleak and disillusioned film (this isn't just about one cheating leader in the past, suggesting that America would rather forget the primal scene of Watergate), it exudes vibrant good humour.
Dick is so unbelievably funny. It's one of those movies that gets funnier
with repeated viewing, kinda like Kids in the Hall: Brain Candy (doesn't
hurt that it has two former Hall cast members). And what a cast it has.
take a look, we got the SNL crew (Will Ferrell, Ana Gasteyer, Jim Breuer),
the Hall boys (Bruce McCulloch, Dave Foley), Simpsons voice Harry Shearer,
and two cute as a button up and coming young actresses (Kirsten Dunst,
Michelle Williams). But the big surprises for me were Hedaya and Rubinek,
who would gave the most subtle, brilliant performances, and some of the
biggest laughs. Rubinek, for example, only had a handful of lines in the
film as Kissenger, but they're the ones that stuck with me. Little things
like, "I'm familiar with these girls. Don't you look at me that way!" and
"Yes, I know what nyet, nyet means". And Hedaya's evil Nixon was just
hysterical, probably the most perfect comedic bad guy since Dr. Evil. How
can you not love a villain with lines like, "Checkers--shut up! Or I'll
you to the Chinese!". These guys had me in hysterics.
This from the writer/director of The Craft? Talk about a step in the right direction! But I could probably tell you without checking that The Craft made more money at the box office, sadly. But the centre of the film is Dunst and Williams, and if they weren't so incredibly good as the two air heads, the movie probably wouldn't have worked, despite the best efforts of the talented cast. Foley says it best, "I have met yams with more going on upstairs than these two." The movie keeps sneaking up on you with these quite, brilliant little lines, like the girls walking down a hallway, "I think it was left.", "That's because you couldn't turn right". Not to mention a terrific 70's soundtrack, and I don't even like music from that era (Nixon walking off to "You're so Vain" was the greatest!) Okay, I've said enough. Did I mention I liked this movie? See this movie. I'm Canadian, I don't understand exactly what Watergate was about (despite having seen Oliver Stone's Nixon twice), and I was just learning to walk when Nixon was forced out of office so I didn't recognize many of the names thrown around, but I loved it all the same and was able to get all of the jokes. 9/10 stars. G'night!
I give to this movie 10/10. When I watched this movie on the movie theater I got a little bit ashamed because nobody laughs... I think because the plot is too much America, and the Brazilian people didn't get in the mood of the movie. The two girls were great in the screen in this movie. And also the soundtrack is amazing, with the best from 70s. I got this on DVD and always that I can I watch it again.
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