Thursday, November 13, 2014

Entertainment of 1976: All the President's Men

Welcome back ladies and gents to Day 3 of Entertainment of 1976. Now then I could have jotted down a quick write up yesterday but it was my birthday and my mother and girlfriend took me out to have some fun. A novel concept in of itself. With that in mind what say we take in a show of mystery, intrigue, shadowplay and conspiracy? Perhaps one of this country's greater scandals that led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon and brought writers Woodward and Bernstein to the echelons of print. And all they had to do was skulk, take notes and avoid capture for the Watergate scandal. This is All the President's Men.

Well maybe he is just dusting... in the dark.

With the follow-up to the 1972 elections, a minor break-in to the Democratic Party headquarters, string writer Bob Woodward (Robert Redford of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, The Sting, The Great Gatsby, Three Days of the Condor, Out of Africa and Spy Game) finds it conveinent that the burglars are arrested, all issues are handed and loose-ins completely tied up in record time. In a town where your car can get jacked and you may not see it again or ever, this seems fishy. Sensing a further story to be had, Woodward uncovers that five men, four Cubans from Miami and CIA officer James Walter McCord had bugged the hotel itself keeping tabs on their country club attorney.

Smelling blood in the water, Editor Ben Bradlee (Jason Robards of Once Upon a Time in the West, Johnny Got His Gun, Murders in the Rue Morgue, The Legend of The Lone Ranger, Parenthood and Philadelphia) knows Woodward is on the right track and this story is going to rattle the nation assigns Carl Bernstein (Dustin Hoffman of The Graduate, Kramer vs Kramer, Tootsie, Rain Man, Hook and Finding Neverland) to help cover the breaking news and gather all the facts. Government officials are stonewalling them and even the most reliable sources are remaining quiet when Woodward and Bernstein receive a message to meet an anonymous source to let them in on the juicy details.

So there's big money in comic book themed movies?

Under the cover of darkness in a discreet parking lot their informant "Deep Throat" (Hal Holbrook of Magnum Force, Lincoln, The Creeper, The Fog, North and South, Designing Women and The Bachelor) who speaks in riddles and hyperbole speaking how "follow the money" our ace reporters piece together that the five burglars managed to swindle thousands of dollars set aside for Nixon's re-election campaign and the heat is coming down on our boys for not identifying their source. Apparently constitutional rights are only conducive when it suits the situation. Which links to the White House Chief of Staff creating a slush fund to buy votes, obstruct the ballad box and in general put the wool over America's eyes. Digging deeper, our steadfast ink slingers start connecting the dots to covert ops on stateside of which the CIA are NOT ALLOWED to operate on in the first place.

With this damning news the cover-up puts our legmen in mortal danger trying to make them disappear and sweep this under the rug. Will the truth come to the light?? Will Nixon get away with illegal dealings??

A few tidbits on the flick now. An appearance in the movie is oddly enough Frank Wills, security guard that discovers the break-in playing himself in the role. Redford and Hoffman memorized each other's lines so they could interrupt each other accurately like they were in the true conflict.

In May 31, 2005 in a Vanity Fair article "Deep Throat" came forward and outed himself as former Deputy Director of the FBI Mark Felt. 

To capture the essence of the roles Redford and Hoffman spent months in the Washington Post offices, sitting around the bullpen and sitting in on news conferences to get the hustle and bustle of a newspaper man.

A suspenseful thriller of political maneuvering and obstruction of Justice based solely on the Watergate Scandal.  Not having the stranglehold that reemerged since 1986, The MPAA originally was going to rate this movie as R for the language but realized the significance of the material and the impact it has had on the nation to PG as it is deemed necessary by writing and film classes nationwide.  

Whadda mean I am not good for Jaws?