Election

Election

More than 15 years ago, Reese Witherspoon gave her first really impressive performance as an ambitious, overachieving high school student in the indie comedy Election. She’d shown talent before then, but this was the moment we knew she would grow as an actress as she aged further into adulthood (she was 22 at the time, playing a teenager). Later came Legally Blonde and cemented her as a movie star, one who would go on to additional rom-com fluff like Sweet Home Alabama while only occasionally mixing in more substantial fare — enough to win an Oscar in 2005 for Walk the Line, at least. Now she appears to be focused on the latter in what some have called a career resurrection or (to borrow an idea from her Mud co-star) “Reese-enaissance” or (via the Fighting in the War Room podcast) “Reese-urgence.” And with this new era comes a reunion with her Election director, Alexander Payne. According to Deadline, Witherspoon, who is likely to earn an Oscar nomination for Wild later this month (she’s already up for the Golden Globe and SAG Award), is set to join Matt Damon in Downsizing, a movie also reuniting her and Payne with screenwriter Jim Taylor. He’d collaborated with the director on every one of his movies from Citizen Ruth in 1996 to Sideways in 2004, the latter winning them both an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay, but he’s been absent from Payne’s last few (Downsizing has been in development for a long time, so they likely […]

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Ned Beatty in Network

Did you vote today? If not, is it because you don’t think your vote matters? I can understand why you might believe that, because of how cynical we’ve gotten about democracy in America. Some of that is due to the real world, what we’ve seen or what we’ve been told about political and electoral corruption, not that either is anything remotely new. Some it, though, is due to the way the movies reinforce that idea that elections are shams. We’re long past the days of Frank Capra, although his movies weren’t exactly free of the evils of the system; they just treated them as the stuff of villains and seemed hopeful about idealism and democracy in the end. Since then we’ve had Watergate and Bush v. Gore and numerous Election Day controversies a decade, and through it all we’ve had exaggerated depictions of the worst of the democratic process. The following scenes are not ones we love because we think democracy is truly a sham. It’s more that they’re great scenes and also are about democracy being a sham. Watch them this evening while you’re waiting on election results. They might just ease the blow or excitement on whatever the outcomes mean to you.

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Election

Election Day is stressful. No matter which side you fall on, Democrat, Republican or that guy who wants to legalize pot, this 2012 Election has been one for the books. It’s a race that will come down to the wire as the nation shows how split it is ideologically. And for anyone with emotional investment in either candidate, there will be some grey hairs gained before it’s all said and done. As a born-and-raised Ohioan, my thoughts are with the pummeled masses in my home state. Friends and family who have all had their lives shaken up with an onslaught of campaign ads and robocalls. As someone who lived through two elections as an adult living in Ohio, I can vouch that it’s torture. So this list is for you, my dearest friends and relatives in Ohio. A list of 7 movies you can watch today that are political and enjoyable. Because it’s Election Day and we should celebrate our democracy by doing our civic duty. But we also should be able to relax and have a little bit of fun. So download one (or more) of these to your iPad to watch while you’re waiting in line for hours just to get to the polls.

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published: 01.31.2015
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published: 01.30.2015
published: 01.30.2015
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published: 01.29.2015
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