Movie Review: Bob Roberts (1992)

Wrapping it in the flag and a folk song (9/10)
Directed by Tim Robbins

Original Review by Brian R. Wright, November 19, 2006

Bob Roberts is a timely movie about national political cynicism that was intended to satirize the Republican Revolution of 1994.  Others have contended the subject of the satire was the Reagan 80s, against the Gordon Gekko “Greed is Good” crowd.

But it could not be more appropriate to the rise and ascendancy of the Bush II clique.

Roberts, a Pennsylvania Senate candidate , is a rich, smarmy, guitar-strumming, media savvy corporate shill.  He sings folk songs about the joys of strip mining, stock-market success, and capital punish- ment for drug dealers.

The review on the IMDB site  states Roberts is eerily prescient of Rick Santorum, who won the 1994 Senate race in Pennsylvania by affecting the same style as Tim Robbins in the title role.  Like Bob Roberts, Santorum postured as a friend of the common man, yet was a front for powerful corporate interests (esp. the health insurance industry).

The cast is stellar, as writer-director Robbins skewers the lazy, posturing media—actors Fred Ward, Pamela Reed, and James Spader send up good roles—; malicious security hacks (Alan Rickman); and the gullible public itself. Continue reading

Movie Review: Orange County (2002)

Literary and musical satire, roflmao, will stand the test of time (8/10)
Directed by Jake Kasdan

OrangeWhat an amazingly entertaining movie… with almost exactly the right amount of serious inspiration. One of Colin Hanks’ (son of actor Tom Hanks and Samantha Lewes) first efforts, and it’s a doozy for him; he’s in practically every scene. He plays a California high school surfer dude, Shaun Brumder, who after discovering a book on the beach in his senior year decides he wants to be a writer. The movie also features the daughter of Sissy Spacek, Schuyler Fisk, as his girlfriend Ashley… and is an early directorial effort of Jake Kasdan, son of well-known director Lawrence Kasdan. Whoever did the casting for Orange County should have gotten an Academy Award… assuming they give Oscars for casting.

Here’s a list of the better knowns: Continue reading