DC 9/11: Time of Crisis (TV Movie 2003) Poster

(2003 TV Movie)

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Too early for 9/11 films
dromasca24 January 2004
IMDB viewer votes statistics are sometimes as fascinating as the information about the films or the user comments. In this case, roughly 25% of the viewers rated this film at 10, while almost 50% gave it a 1. This tells that we - IMDB viewers - are judging this film according to our political beliefs and not as cinema. Maybe it is too early to make films about 9/11, the emotions are still here, the pain is still intense, the same US president is in office, and we all live daily the fall-outs of 9/11. If we avoid the political judgment, what can we say about the film? Not too much I am afraid. It is not too good as political drama, it does not say too much about the real people behind their masks, well known from the TV screens. Too much film propaganda, too many lines from political speeches and too little human emotion. The film gets a 6 out of 10 on my personal scale.
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Politics Aside, this is a good historical drama
LARSONRD4 July 2005
Reading the other reviews of this film are telling - and I think the posting by dromasca told it all - most viewers are unable to shed their political leanings concerning films like this, and most reviews (positive and negative) seem to be borne from one's personal leanings in that regard. It would be interested to note if this film had been released before the end of 2001, would it have garnered more positive reviews? But now in the wake of FAHRENHEIT 9/11 (and by the way if you have seen that film you owe it to yourself to also see FAHREN-HYPE 9/11 just to get a balanced report - before making up your mind), this film seems to add more fuel to the Bushfires. I found it to be a compelling Showtime TV movie, focusing on the perspective of President George W. Bush in the week following the Sept 11th attacks on the USA. While the focus and timing (released on DVD just in time for the 2004 presidential election; although the film itself debuted on TV on Sep 7 2003) may suggest propaganda (and there may be just a bit of heavy handed pro-Bush emphasis; but then, the film is told from his perspective); however the film is excellently put together and was written by respected historical writer Lionel Chetwynd (who wrote the terrific IKE: COUNTDOWN TO D-DAY, and who reportedly had unprecedented access to the key White House personnel, including GW, to ensure the comprehensiveness and relative accuracy of his script). As a result, the film seems reasonably credible. It's fascinating to discover some of the innerworkings of our government on that dark day, and to depict the human side of GW, even while resurrecting strong emotions over the events of that day – events which many Americans seem to have forgotten in their rush to criticize foreign policy… Timothy Bottoms is outstanding in his portrayal of GW, resembling him as he does physically (ironically, he played GW on TV's irreverent THERE'S MY BUSH) many of the other cast members bear a striking resemblance to the people they play also (Ashcroft, Rice, Rumsfeld, Cheney).
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Perhaps a bit of propaganda, but a good depiction of events
ibscas13 January 2004
First off, Timothy Bottoms does a great job as Dubya. In fact, all of the actors, except for the guy who play Colin Powell, looks very much and acts very much like their real counterparts.

While this film was very Bush-friendly, I think it was accurate. Bush is a caring man, you can tell by his whole emotion during 9/11 (not the movie, but in real life). Everyone wants to think he's this dopey guy who doesn't do anything at all and lets others make his choices. Dopey or not, he made it to Governor and President, he's not too dopey if he did that. Think its luck? Could you do it? Nope and neither could I.

That being said, this was a decent film for the fact that it was rushed out and not very high budget. It really stirred up some memories for me and brought me to tears a few times. The whole Iraq and WMD issues were there and were not painted as a conservative or liberal slant, I would say that it both supported and damned the Bush administration just as much as it supported and damned the liberal viewpoint on the Iraq war.

I never thought of Bush as a great president, but if the movie is really true to life, then I am wrong, he is a great president. He was portrayed as a president that takes action and has the country's best at heart. Did he pawn off some business rebuilding Iraq to some buddies of his, but what politician hasn't or wouldn't do that? If you think Clinton didn't profit or his buddies didn't profit during his administration then you are living in a dream world.

Anyway, I think it's worth watching this movie. In fact I would like to buy it. I'll admit that I'm a Bush supporter, but I'm also fair enough to recognize propaganda even if it supports my candidate. This is a bit of that, but since there were consultants for this film from both sides I believe that it's just like every other movie made, a bit of Hollywood, a bit of the producers politics and a bit of fact. Although I think it's mostly fact.
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Greatly appreciated the White House's perspective.
dalejones79 September 2006
I felt that potential viewers might want to read a comment from someone who enjoyed the film. I rented this recently and was taken aback by how good it was. It says clearly on the package that it is from the White House's perspective and that is was based upon interviews with them, so I don't see why people are so insulted it paints a favorable light on the President. It dramatizes what happened the first 9 days after 9/11. It shows the emotions they went through as well as being able to see the beginnings of many decisions that effect us today. The reenactments of scenes I saw live on TV when they happened have helped me to better understand some of the things that have resulted. I don't have reason to doubt much of it's credibility unless you just don't like Bush and hate to see anything positive said about him. As far as quality of acting and cinematography, I'm not much good at discerning those things, but I do know when a movie impacts me......this one has.
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A Very Pleasant Surprise
chaffs10 September 2003
When I first saw the promo for this movie, I didn't think it would be worth watching; first, because cable (even premium channel) original movies are seldom good, and second, because I assumed a movie about 9/11 would be filled with anti-Bush sentiment (Hollywood being overrun with crazy leftists and all.)

I began watching, expecting to turn it off in ten minutes. However, the movie turned out to be a diamond in the rough, a very pleasant surprise.

Of course, the cast is certainly not A-list (they seem to have been cast mainly for their resemblances to administration members--John Cunningham in particular being Rummy's doppelganger). However, I can't think of one person in the cast who didn't turn a passionate, stirring, and accurate performance; from David Fonteno's tentative Colin Powell to Allen Coates's condescending Senator Byrd. These actors have certainly done their homework.

Given that this movie, in premium channel style, will probably be played ad nauseam over the next few months, everyone will have plenty of chance to see it, and see it they should. Though it's rather weak praise, it's probably the best cable-tv original movie I've ever seen.
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A fair and balanced opinion for a change.
srchprtnrs13 January 2004
I am so disgusted that the opinions of the Libs require me to even respond.

I feel that the opinions of the majority,who rated this film a 1, did so not on the basis of artistic merit, but on politics. Let's stick to our knitting here folks. I thought the film was capably acted, had some very effective cut-aways and told an interesting account of the days immediately following our nation's greatest tragedy. To balance the leftist propaganda machine, I vote this a 10!
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Great story of the personalities who were in power during the tragedy of 9/11.
yyessway1-119 September 2003
Regardless of your politics, this is a pretty straightforward account of September 11th. President Bush and his aides and cabinet rose to the challenges of this national emergency and this movie tells that story. It was a little strange watching an actor play George W.; but I was glad the performers resisted any exaggeration.
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The Michael Moore Antidote
stevenwales15 September 2004
Flawless celluloid or not, this film--based on numerous interviews with members of the Bush Administration--provides a rational response to Michael Moore's juvenalian fiction. I cannot recommend the film more strongly, simply as equal time. If you dislike Bush, consider watching the film and asking yourself if all that happened after September 11 could have happened any other way. Bush's critics, (e.g., Moore, James Carville, etc.) sometimes sound like the legalize-pot activists who insist the Founding Fathers all smoked marijuana. This in spite of the fact that their own pot smoking habits have often robbed the activists of discipline and ambition and left them a shadow of who they might have become. The fact is, mellowed-out potheads would never have pledged their "lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor" to fight a Revolutionary War. Similarly, a dunce who sits in Cheney's lap could not have handled the events of September 11 as Bush did. What this film may lack (and I'm not conceding it lacks anything), it makes up for with the unmistakable ring of truth.
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A movie every American should see!
tonyfrontino24 June 2005
This movie showed the strength of our government during a major crisis. The movie showed President Bush and his cabinet at their best. The movie was written from actual transcripts after the attack. It is a shame that the movie didn't received any PR. I saw it on HBO and then it was gone. No one on any radio talk shows mentioned it. Everyone talked about Farenheit 911, which was a trash of the events of 911. It was false and a put down of the government. I believe that schools should show DC 9/11. It showed the fast reaction of our government. Also the many hard decisions that had to be made by President Bush. It also showed the reaction of the Bush's Family. I am buying a copy of the movie!
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Insightful, even-handed look at the 9/11 crisis
tsda26 August 2004
While many may criticize the film strictly for portraying the President in a fairly positive light, if you put politics aside, this is a good, but not great, film. The director tries a little too hard not to over-dramatize, but in a way it restricts the actors from portraying the true emotion of that day. However, the film itself does manage to keep the viewer engrossed as the plot, as everyone now knows front to back, unfolds. It provides a unique perspective in how these people faced this tragedy, not knowing what we know now, having to decide in a moments' notice the best course to take, knowing it will be questioned for years to come. The movie does try to be politically even-handed, but let's face it: the main characters are Republicans, so they will look good in this movie. That fact alone will cause some to convulse, but mature viewers will find this a unique viewing experience.
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The President the media does not want you to know about
lankypoo12 September 2003
For those who are sick of all the Bush bashing you hear from the media and Hollywood, this movie came off as pretty refreshing. Apparently, the movie was based on Bob Woodward's (the same guy who exposed Nixon) recent book about the President. There were also three political consultants on this film: a conservative, a centrist, and a liberal. While those who dislike Bush would probably be turned off by the fact that he is portrayed as a deeply caring man who is committed to protecting the American people, those who believe in the President will see the reason why they do.
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A very well made movie
odoacer-112 September 2003
If you can put aside your political blinders, you will see that this is very well made movie. It is not fair to the actors and actresses in this movie to rip it politically. Timothy Bottoms plays George W. Bush to a T. The movie is gripping in its portrayal of the parties involved. It is a good idea to watch this movie in conjunction with watching the news bits of that horrible day.
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It was terrific for what it was!
lanroot5 September 2005
I really enjoyed this film for several reasons. The foremost reason is that it didn't tear up the administration for its lack for foresight or any other failure people like to point out. I suppose its like the reader who feels anger towards me for saying anything nice about Bush - just can't help it huh? Did he hurt you? Did I? Sorry.

You see, no matter what position someone holds, they will always make mistakes. Spelling mistakes, calculation mistakes, errors in judgment, failure to achieve completion of a good project, and creating bad projects that damage plague us all! I can say 'sorry' for things I fail at - and boy I sure do, and I get forgiven and even respected for the apology. But not leaders. Especially leaders who don't follow the popular trends. Its as if the 'popular trends' are always the right trends and if you fail when you aren't following the trends, well, there you go! Idiot! Hardly. It's not fair or balanced when trend followers fail and don't get any blame. Bush's predecessor (what's his name?) lied loudly to the world, but that was a trendy thing he did.. so hey, no foul. Media liked him.

Anyways, the film yes. Well there's not one film in the world (besides spaceballs and Dude Where's My Car and others of that sort) that don't take themselves seriously. There's always something in it that isn't just entertainment - but always a message to be heard. Was this film supposed to be the precise history of 9/11? No, I really didn't feel that was the intention. It really was a film that brought emotion to the forefront. It wasn't to blame or to fame anyone, but rather to lift up those who suffered, to show the faces of Americans as a nation that hurt. The film brought tears to my eyes to see the devastation again (though the scenes that showed destruction were easily identified as special effects) and I took that message to heart. It brings the same compassion and hurt to viewers as should stories brought to us from the devastation of Katrina. That's what the film was - not finger pointing or some political spam tool, but good old story telling of pain and sorrow - what we all should ponder each year at 9/11.

Donate to the Katrina relief!
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Great snapshot of our commander in chief in his most important role.
mgpowell200310 September 2004
Great, great film. I recommend it to all. Of course, die hard liberals need not watch it since they will be watching Farenheit 911 and believing the trash Michael Moore spins, but if you want the truth about the actions of our commander in chief, this is for you.

Timmoth Bottoms nails GW's character. From not being able to find the adequate words to express his grief and sorrow to a nation, to stopping reporters in their tracks from saying things that would potentially cause undue stress on a group of kindergartners (he said: "we can discuss that later (meaning NOT HERE)." The accurate portrayal of a leader who took charge during that period of time.

It done accurately, it is done with no political leanings, and it is just a great piece of work.
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Rare high workmanship standards
me-29018 January 2004
In time to come the subject will be one the outstanding events in the history of humanity and the American Republic studied by historians. I wish ShowTime would make copies of this work available to the general public and overlook any distaste by some of the politically involved. I compliment those who created this film. As a news addict and one who has not so short a memory that I could not recognise politically and ideologically motivated "misrepresentations" so prevalent today. This is clearly an expert, honest, work.
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7 Minutes Not 20 and Certainly Not 40
gtipton_pcpro10 November 2006
For the record, Bush was with the Florida school children for 7 minutes, not the 20 minutes that people have claimed. As far as the Democrats, they hid in the Senate meeting room for 40 minutes, so the Democrats have a double standard, as usual.

As far as the movie DC 9/11: A Time of Crisis goes, it is a fairly accurate portrayal of President Bush's response to the 9/11 attacks, and not politically-motivated left-wing propaganda that is usually found in Hollywood.

Timothy Bottom's portrayal of President George W. Bush was first-rate and deserved an Oscar for Best Actor, but sadly there is political bias as far as who gets awards in Hollywood and who doesn't.
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Powerful, moving.
royh-24 September 2004
This movie does its best to be accurate, and it does a pretty good job. If you're looking for fuel for a conspiracy theory, it isn't here. The film captures the essence of the man who now sits in the Oval Office, and how he and his team worked to deal with the tragedies of the WTC, the plane hijackings, and the Pentagon.

It is a powerful film. Be prepared to be moved.

The film serves to remind the viewers of the combined tragedies, and the impact on our national psyche. If you have somehow dozed off to the implications of 9/11, this film might serve to wake you up.

By the end of the film, if you don't feel the surge of love for your country and the compassion and pride that goes with it, perhaps you need to check your partisanship at the door. When we were attacked on Sept. 11, 2001, the terrorists didn't target just Democrats, or just Republicans. They weren't even targeting just Americans. The World Trade Center was a financial icon for the world, and was as multi-ethnic and multi-national as any single building besides the U.N. headquarters can be. No, the WTC attack on 9/11 was an indication that the attacks previously focused on the United States had just been expanded against all Western nations, and by extension - on Christians, Jews, Muslims who do business with them, and on all non-Muslims. It was a renewed declaration of war, and this film portrays the leaders who helped us through the tragedy as a nation, and as a result - it focuses around the one man who did the most to comfort a grieving nation.
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As accurate as it is possible to be!
kingsleypearce11 July 2004
In a time when the propaganda of Michael Moore reigns supreme it is more than just a pleasant surprise to come across a gem like this.

DC 9/11: Time of Crisis is as accurate as it is possible for anyone to be. Many who would rather a savagely and destructively critical review of President Bush's days after 9/11 will quite naturally denounce this movie. It simply doesn't fit with their twisted and hate filled view of the world.

It is simply not possible to dispute the accuracy of many of the scenes because only those who were there can really tell us what happened. For the rest of us who do not belong to the fellowship of 'dubya' hatred it is the best that we are ever likely to get. For that we should all be grateful.
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Most people apparently just aren't getting it
joave6 September 2005
Normally I would not review the reviewers, but in this case I believe it is appropriate. First, a quick review of the movie: it was well done in most respects. It gives a feeling of being there, the acting was credible, and the movie blended the actual footage with the filmed footage well. My only complaint was that it was a little long and tended to drag in places. Without being "politically motivated," I can say that the movie was informative about what may have taken place in the meeting rooms behind the scenes.

This movie might be trying to be propaganda, but it is also telling a story, one that the public was not aware of. The critics of this movie on IMDb appear to have all this inside information. Were they there? How do they know how the President acted, or anyone else for that matter?? I follow the news enough to believe that these people could actually have made those statements and acted in those manners.

So what if the actor who portrayed the President was the same one that made fun of him on the cable TV show. He was the perfect choice in his physical resemblance, voice, and mannerisms. He obviously felt strongly enough in his convictions to play this part (either that or he really wanted the meager salary of this big budget movie). Certainly it was not an embarrassment to play this part in this movie.

A movie needs to be judged on it's own merit as a movie. This one needs to be looked at as if the story didn't happen. Then the movie can be judged as a movie. In the meantime, many people that have reviewed it have not been able to step back far away enough to do that. It is all too obvious.
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DC 9/11 Awesome & moving
kingplanet6 April 2005
Bravo to Showtime, actor Timothy Bottoms, director Brian Trenchard-Smith and screenwriter Lionel Chetwynd. They have made a motion picture that showed a nation under attack and a presidency ready to meet the challenge of the war on terror for years to come. This is one of the most intense made for cable films I have ever seen. Bottoms is awesome in his performance as President George W. Bush. I liked the fact that he didn't try to do a fake imitation of the President's voice, he just simply made the role his own and used the President's words and actions speak for themselves. Intercutting with actual footage was a stroke of genius on the film makers part, as it added to the horror and realism. We will no doubt over the years learn much more about the 9/11 attacks on our country and another motion picture will probably be made later on, but this film about the first few days of the attack and the decisive steps taken by this administration will stand firmly on its own. It wasn't that long ago and the film indeed represents very closely what actually happened. There is a lot of debate on the IMDb about this film and everyone should be glad we live in a country where you have the free speech to do that. there are SEVERAL countries where you cannot.
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OK film
phuture-113 September 2004
An attempt at a fairly accurate portrayal of the President and his stadd in the days following the 9-11 attack.

I was impressed with the characterisations, and found some sections to be quite moving.

This is a much more accurate portrayal than Farenheit 9-11, which I'm told, contains many factual errors and more artistic license ( its crap in other words)

It's easy to see why certain people are blasting this film , but those people with so much unreasonable dislike for Bush will never be convinced , i prefer to be more objective and cannot see anything i really dislike about him

My condolences to all those who lost their lives that terrible day
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Moving Reminder of What a Great President We Have
Tech Lawyer13 January 2004
We are now more than two years removed from the horrific events of September 11, 2001. In that time, it has become easy to forget the fantastic job George W. Bush and his cabinet did in responding deliberately and meaningfully to the threat of terrorist attacks against the United States. This film is a good reminder of the events of that dark day and the days shortly thereafter.

Michael Moore fans will not enjoy this film because it does not portray President Bush as a bumbling buffoon, affable moron, or thieving pol. Instead, the film remains accurate about what the President said and did in public, and creates believable and plausible scenes about which was not in public. In short, the film makers did not buy into myths, fantasy, or paranoid delusion about 9/11, the President, or the government. In that regard, the film is indeed refreshing.
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Finally, A Movie About 9/11 That Tells The Truth!
Eric-62-224 September 2004
Thank God for Lionel Chetwynd, because it means there is at least one filmmaker in Hollywood with enough sanity to deviate from the radical garbage of Michael Moore and his documented lies to just tell the truth about what happened on 9/11, which shows the courageous and effective response of our national leaders to the greatest tragedy in American history.

Liberals who want to carp about a film that dares to show a positive depiction of President Bush have been pampered for years with fawning (and often not always accurate) portrayals of Democrat presidents in action (see the well-done "Missiles Of October" and the awful "Thirteen Days" for instance) that it speaks volumes to their general sense of intolerance to throw fits over a film that dares to show a positive depiction of a Republican president in action.

But unlike liberal movies with their indulgence for hate-filled conspiracy rhetoric about conservatives and Republicans, there are no cheap shots thrown at Democrat politicians in this film. Sure, we hear talk about "changes in policy" but there are no direct digs at Bill Clinton which Chetwynd easily could have done. The intent, like "The Missiles Of October", is to recreate how our leaders acted in a time of crisis, and in that respect he succeeds brilliantly just like "The Missiles Of October" did for the Cuban Missile Crisis.

The performances are outstanding. Timothy Bottoms nails W. down perfectly as do the rest of the cast (although I didn't think Lawrence Pressman quite got Dick Cheney). It's enough to make you at times think you're listening in on the real events as they unfolded.

Bravo Lionel Chetwynd for providing people who understand the facts about 9/11 and President Bush for giving us a welcome antidote to the mountains of filth from the likes of Michael Moore and other self-hating Americans.
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Great movie for every American to see. Makes us all proud.
spacecadet22 January 2004
If you don't like this movie, find another country to call your own and please leave. This movie does every American proud. All the actors do an exceptional job in their portrayal of our leaders, and it honors the lives lost in this tragedy. See it! Ten stars!
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rufit14 September 2004
Finally a documentary that isn't based on propaganda like that totally useless Fahrenheit 911 fiction. This documentary is based on the facts, not what someone wishes the facts to be. If you take the time to investigate what actually happened, this movie matches exactly what did happen. Just take the time to read (especially blogs) instead of being blinded by the liberal media. Remember the liberal media will always distort the truth to advance their own liberal viewpoint. The only thing I would say about this documentary is that I don't think George Bush actually showed that much emotion. He appears to be much more reserved under pressure. Take the time to watch this and not only will you be entertain, you will probably learn something.
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