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Movie Renter's Guide - January, 2009

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"Swing Vote" (Blu-ray)

movie-january-2009-swing-vote.jpgSynopsis

President Andrew Boone (Grammer) is running for re-election, and election day has come.

Bud Johnson (Costner) lives in Texaco, New Mexico, working in an egg packing plant, and does not care much about anything in life, especially politics. His daughter Molly (Carroll) wants him to become involved, so she has registers him as a voter in the Independent category. She tells him to be sure and do his duty, and vote.

When he does not show up at the voting precinct, she sneaks in and votes for him, but there is a glitch in the computer, and it turns out that the Presidential race is a tie, with Bud having the right to go back and recast his vote.

So, now, of course, the President and his aides, as well as the Democratic challenger, Donald Greenleaf (Hopper) and his aides, do everything they can to sway his vote towards their side.

 

 

Specifications

  • Touchstone Pictures
  • 2008, Color, Rated PG-13, 2 Hr
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • 1080p
  • Codec: Not Specified
  • English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
  • Starring Kevin Costner, Dennis Hopper, Stanley Tucci, Nathan Lane, Kelsey Grammer, Madeline Carrol
  • Directed by Joshua Michael Stern
    Rating
  • Entertainment:
  • Video:
  • Audio:
  • Extras:
  • Violence: No
  • Sex: No
  • Language: Mild

Commentary

The movie casts a pretty bad light on politics and politicians, but this is a light we have seen for centuries. However, it does not wallow in current topics that divide our political parties, but just shows the humor in ways the parties go to spin their standings on specific issues to get Bud to vote their way.

In school, Molly reads her report on politics and makes a statement that is actually quite profound for a movie script, saying that all modern civilizations go through several stages, from bondage to liberty, from liberty to abundance, from abundance to complacency, from complacency to apathy, and from apathy back to bondage. I think in our case (USA) we have reached the back to bondage stage in our national debt of 9 trillion dollars that is about to become a lot bigger with the bailouts that are coming.

Technical

The image is nice and sharp, but there's not much use of surrounds. I guess surround sound is more of a feature that suits movies with a lot of special effects, especially chase scenes and explosive encounters.

Extras

These include Inside the Campaign: The Politics of Production, which discusses the studio's making fun of ourselves in the way we approach politics, and shows the town of Belen, New Mexico where the movie was shot. There is also a set of deleted and extended scenes, and a director and writer commentary.