Following the death of his brother John, Robert Kennedy is forced to rise to the challenge of leading his country and carrying on his brother's vision of what America could be.

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Following the death of his brother John, Robert Kennedy is forced to rise to the challenge of leading his country and carrying on his brother's vision of what America could be.

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Taglines:

Dreamer. Rebel. Leader. Brother.

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Drama | History

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25 August 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Little Brother  »

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Turn! Turn! Turn!
Written by Pete Seeger
Performed by The Byrds
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RFK tiptoes where 1985 mini-series marched
24 March 2003 | by (Honolulu, Hawaii) – See all my reviews

The only thing this TV-movie did better than the 1985 mini-series "Robert Kennedy & His Times" was the casting of Lyndon Johnson, though neither actor was remotely like the real man in manner, speech or action.

These two docudramas cover virtually the same identical territory, though the 1985 one does it in 6 hours, and thus can go into much greater detail. I happened to watch them back-to-back (the 1985 mini-series is airing on the Starz TrueStories channel this month) and the mini-series is far better at getting into the mind of RFK--especially without ghostly pronouncements by his brother. Too bad the actor playing Johnson is so jarring, because most of the other casting is quite wonderful, especially Beatrice Straight as Rose and Veronica Cartwright as Ethel Kennedy. The blending of actual footage and newly shot footage is seamless and effective. The locations (Hickory Hill and Hyannisport) look far more like the real places than in the 2002 FX production.

The casting of RFK and JFK is always problematic and neither of these productions does terribly well. At least not for those of us who remember the real men. But for those who want to know of these events, they are adequate. It's not the actors' faults. The Kennedy brothers were so visible, memorable and distinctive that unless you're both a great actor and a virtual lookalike, no one can do it.


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