Fair and balanced--it might not appeal to those who blindly loved the family nor those who really, really hate them.
Episode Two of "The Kennedys" from "The American Experience" mostly centers on John Kennedy as president, the rise and tragic fall of Bobby and the crazy antics of Teddy. And, in the end, it returns to the patriarch, Joe, Sr., and the impact of the tragic events on his waning years.
This is an incredible film, as other films about the Kennedy family are simply gushing, slobbering love stories that promote the mythic Kennedy mystique. Now I am NOT saying I want a film to trash the film--but I want the truth...and "The American Experience" really impressed me with its warts and all documentary. It both helps you appreciate and respect the family as well as exposes their darker sides--particularly the family patriarch, Joe, Sr.--who was NOT a particularly nice fella. I love this respect for the truth, as history SHOULD represent the good and bad in people instead of simply trying to inspire. So, on the negative side, Joe, Sr. and all the help he gave his son, John, to become elected is discussed--such as his helping him write the book "Profiles in Courage", the MANY infidelities of both father and son, paying off Republican publications to endorse his son and the like. I also loved how folks like Tip O'Neill said, bluntly, that John "...wasn't much of a congressman"! Now none of this is to say he wasn't a very good president--but it serves to demystify the man and his family--whose exploits in most films are patently ridiculous. You CAN love and respect a person without having to re-write history to make it all positive! Learning how John cried for his sister and her early death, the portions about the assassinations of John and Bobby were profoundly sad and teary (even after all these years) and the comments by folks who knew them all were quite revealing and exciting.
An exceptional film that neither bashes the Kennedy family unmercifully nor does it sink to overt sentimentality--well balanced and complete.
0 of 0 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?