Film Screening 27th September, 2006

Poster for The Candidate

The Candidate 

8:00 PM, 27th September, 2006

  • PG
  • 109 mins
  • 1972
  • Michael Ritchie
  • Jeremy Larner
  • Robert Redford, Peter Boyle, Melvyn Douglas, Don Porter

Many films lose their edge over time, becoming wonderful fossils we can use to travel back and observe a culture long forgotten. The Candidate is not one of those films.Perhaps even more relevant today than in the year of its production, this incisive satire on politics rings all too true. Subtle and witty, the film takes a skilful scalpel to the political system, along with the vapid, uninformed, sound byte-loving public which allows it to function. Think Dave, but sharper - think Bulworth but smarter - think Network in the Oval Office.The titular character is Bill McKay (Redford, in a perfect piece of casting), son of a former Governor with whom he shares no values or beliefs. When offered the opportunity to step out from his fathers shadow and put forth his own agenda, as a Democratic representative in a hopeless race, Bill jumps at the chance - but only on the condition he can run things his way, with complete honesty and moral fortitude. This is perfectly fine with his professional handlers - that is until it looks like their candidate might actually have a chance of winning this thing...The Academy Award-winning screenplay intermingles wonderful one-liners with the satire, and leaves more between the lines than on the page. If you're a political cynic (and who isn't these days) then the ANU Film Group is the only place you want to be tonight. Unless there's a George W. Bush indictment party somewhere - but I don't like your chances!

Pedr Cain