Film Scouts Reviews

"The American President"

by Leslie Rigoulot

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Gets My Vote

I am so glad to see Michael Douglas in a movie where he is not "victimized" by women! He must be headed in a new direction after DISCLOSURE, FATAL ATTRACTION, BASIC INSTINCT and THE WAR OF THE ROSES. Maybe it is his separation from his wife, but he seems to have regained his sense of humor. Or maybe it is Rob Reiner's gifted direction and Aaron Sorkin's hilarious script that make AMERICAN PRESIDENT an absolute delight.

AMERICAN PRESIDENT addresses the dating problems of the leader of the free world. Can the president date and run the country at the same time? And can he date a lobbyist in an election year? Can a movie that deals with environmental and gun control issues pull in the big bucks? I think so. Annette Bening is smart, strong, witty and like all of us a little intimidated by the office of the president if not the president himself. As the lobbyist that Michael Douglas falls for, Bening prepared for the role by talking with Jessica Landman the Director of the National Resoources Defense Council. And Bening comes off as someone able to debate the Clean Water Act with the best of them. As a matter of fact, there is an air of realism that underlies the entire film due to the extensive research. For Martin Sheen it was a return to the White House, which on film have been his old stomping grounds in TV's Kennedy and the Missiles of October. Even Michael J Fox shines as Domestic Policy Advisor and Jiminey Cricket of the production.

AMERICAN PRESIDENT hasn't been getting a lot of "buzz" but that is because it is just light romantic comedy. And these pros make it look easy. Rated PG-13.

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