7.3/10
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Secret Honor (1984)

Not Rated | | Biography, Comedy, Drama | 29 January 1986 (France)
A fictionalized former President Richard M. Nixon offers a solitary, stream-of-consciousness reflection on his life and political career - and the "true" reasons for the Watergate scandal and his resignation.

Director:

Robert Altman

Writers:

Donald Freed (play), Arnold M. Stone (play) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Philip Baker Hall ... Richard Nixon
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Storyline

In this speculative one-man drama, we see former President Richard Milhous Nixon alone in his study, dictating his thoughts into a tape recorder. His only company are a four-screen closed-circuit TV setup, the portraits on the walls, a bottle of Chivas Regal - and a loaded pistol. At times addressing an imaginary judge in a court of public opinion, at other times speaking to an aide named Roberto, and sometimes just talking to himself, the former chief executive reflects, in a series of meandering monologues, on his humble Quaker upbringing, his school days, his family and a political career that reached all the way to the White House. Nixon rails at his treatment by the likes of Dwight D. Eisenhower, the "goddam Kennedys," J. Edgar Hoover, Henry Kissinger, Jews, liberals, the media, "East Coast shits," among others, as he leads up to the "true" reasons for the Watergate scandal that resulted in his resignation - an act he regards as one of "secret honor." Written by Eugene Kim <genekim@concentric.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Anyone can be president. See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Notable identities, but not American Presidents, past or then present, mentioned and/or referenced throughout this filmed stage play about former disgraced Republican U.S. President Richard Nixon played by Philip Baker Hall included J. Edgar Hoover, Martin Luther King, Jacqueline Kennedy, Pat Nixon, Helen Gahagan Douglas [Helen Gahagan], Howard Hughes, and Dr Henry Kissinger, the latter who is nick-named by Nixon in the film as Dr. Kiss-Ass, and has similarly been nick-named by the Democrats as "Dr Strangelove" [See: Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)]. See more »

Goofs

Even though the real Richard Nixon could play the piano, the real Richard Nixon never learned how to read music. During the part of the film when Richard Nixon is playing his piano sheet music is visible on his piano. It is unlikely that Richard Nixon would have had sheet music on his piano, since he didn't read music. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Richard Nixon: Testing, one, two, three, four.
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Connections

Featured in Altman (2014) See more »

User Reviews

 
Show Me The Range of Philip Baker Hall!
31 December 2013 | by gavin6942See all my reviews

A fictionalized former President Richard M. Nixon offers a solitary, stream-of-consciousness reflection on his life and political career - and the "true" reasons for the Watergate scandal and his resignation.

This comes down to one thing: an examination of the acting skills of Philip Baker Hall. Since the direction is so limited, it really cannot say anything good or bad about Robert Altman (who had already made his name by this point).

Hall's Nixon is something of a madman. He fluctuates through every range of emotion within 90 minutes, at times flipping between anger and suicidal tendencies. What a wild ride. Of course, the film is clearly marked as fiction... so we should not assume this person was in any way related to the real Nixon.


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Details

Official Sites:

Criterion Collection

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 January 1986 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Secret Honor See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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