My Thoughts On A Possible Movie About This Shit Show Of An Election Year
Despite being an American I’m well aware of the fact that this site is read across the globe. Hell Gfunk, the founder, lives in Australia. You come here for movie and geek news. But you’d have to have been living in the deepest caves of Moria to not be aware of the Presidential election in the United States this past year. Now obviously this isn’t a political site. In fact as I said, most of you probably come to this site to get away from the political bullshit, and rightly so because it’s a fun website. (At least I hope you think so.) But if I may, I’d like to delve into politics for just a quick second, reason being because I think my emotions and thoughts on what’s happened in America in the last twelve months are similar to others, and will entice audiences to see an inevitable movie about this past year. I PROMISE this post will become movie related shortly.
So what are my thoughts on this election year?
I’m exhausted. Completely and utterly exhausted. Not physically exhausted but emotionally, mentally, and spiritually exhausted after this atrocious Presidential election year. On both sides of the divide the vitriol, the angst, the hate, the hurt feelings, the hate, the media, the racism, the sexism, the hate, the homophobia, Facebook and Twitter diatribes, and of course the hate have been overwhelming. I can’t even imagine what some of the Thanksgiving Day dinners are going to be like for families this year. Pumpkin pie be afraid. Be very afraid. But bottom line is for better or for worse (probably worse) my country has elected a narcissistic, clueless, racist, sexist, pathologically lying ass-hat for a President.
Despite the nightmare of this last twelve months, there’s one thing I can’t deny: the events of the past year are FANTASTIC fodder for Hollywood. The chances of the story of the 2016 Presidential election being made into a movie are 100%. As Donald Trump might say: “Believe me.” Furthermore, this movie is going to attract talent across the board: writing, directing, acting–the whole gamut. Knowing that, it got me thinking…who should be involved?
Director: Danny Boyle
Obviously, the man has the pedigree with films like Trainspotting, Sunshine, and his Oscar winning film Slumdog Millionaire. While some might believe an American director would be the way to go, I disagree. Steven Spielberg doesn’t feel right, Oliver Stone would make this whole thing conspiracy driven, Ron Howard would be too safe, and Michael Bay, well, since there’s no giant CGI robots he’d probably pass anyway. I think it would be good to get a foreigner’s perspective on this film. An American director might be too biased. Plus I think Boyle did a great job with Steve Jobs showing an honest depiction of how much of an asshole the founder of Apple could be. He did not pull any punches. To ironically quote Fox News, I think he could be “fair and balanced.”
Writer: Aaron Sorkin
This one is a no-brainer. The guy already has experience with political writing with The West Wing. Additionally, Sorkin has proven how socially significant certain touch tone points in history can be with The Social Network. He’s even got the media aspect covered with his experience on the television show The Newsroom.
Cinematography: Robert Elswit
Elswit has been in the business for over thirty years and is a master at his craft. His resume is phenomenal with such films as Magnolia, The Town, Tomorrow Never Dies, and Nightcrawler to name a few. He also won an Academy Award for 2007’s There Will Be Blood. Elswit has also worked with a slew of talented directors including Paul Thomas Anderson, Ben Affleck, Gary Felder, and Brad Bird. Elswit is obviously well-regarded with his peers and is diverse enough to handle films like Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation, and Syriana with equal aplomb.
Score: John Williams
If you’re going to make a movie about one of the most significant elections in the history of the United States, you might as well get the best movie composer of all-time. I could write an article by itself on how significant Williams’ contribution to modern cinema is. Do I even really need to list this guy’s accomplishments? There’s no doubt in my mind that Williams would be able to bring a score with a nice balance of lightheartedness and seriousness.
And now for the actors……
Jeremy Renner as Texas Senator Ted Cruz
Although he’s maybe a smidge young for this role, I think Renner could rock the part. While he certainly doesn’t resemble Cruz (and honestly some of the people in my list absolutely do not) he’s certainly got the acting chops to bring Cruz’s particular brand of condescension and snarkiness to the role.
Adam Scott as Florida Senator Marco Rubio
Of all the Republican candidates I liked Marco Rubio the most. He’s young, energetic, smart, passionate, and (occasionally) funny. You know, everything the Republican party desperately needs. The thing about this potential movie is that there’s no way it can be a straight drama. Seriously, this past year was the theater of the absurd with so much bat-shit crazy insane stuff said (mostly from Trump) that it’d be impossible not to have a comedy element. Scott’s roles in Step Brothers and the television show Parks and Recreation AND a film like The Big Short demonstrate he can deftly balance drama and comedy.
Chiwetel Ejiofor as President Barack Obama
God I love Chiwetel Ejiofor, even if 90% of the time I either mispronounce and/or misspell his name. His range is phenomenal. In the span of three years he’s played a Mars mission director (The Martian), a kidnapped slave (12 Years A Slave), and a Marvel villain (Doctor Strange). There was a word that got thrown around a lot during this election and the word was “presidential.” In fact the word was so prevalent that eventually it lost all meaning. Having said that, if there’s one African-American out there who is “presidential” it’s Ejiofor.
Thandie Newton as First Lady Michelle Obama
President Barak Obama is certainly a polarizing figure both home and abroad. Some see him as the Devil and others as a Savior. I think like most things, the truth lies somewhere in the middle. However, even hardcore Republicans (at least in my experience) tend to like and respect Michelle Obama. She’s smart, funny, passionate, and attractive. Michelle Obama is definitely in the top five when it comes to First Ladies. Thandie Newton (who is currently KILLING it on HBO’s Westworld) fits all those categories. Aside from doing an American accent, I think she could step into this role easily.
Jonah Hill as New Jersey Governor Chris Christie
Chris Christie is a walking disaster. I mean seriously when Bobby Moynihan on SNL did a Donald Trump skit where he kept quoting the Animal House line, “Yes sir, thank you sir, may I please have another?” it wasn’t far off. He’s the very definition of a toadie. Hill could step right into this part no problem. Can’t you just see him doing sniveling and fawning? I can. My only concern would be the age difference as Christie is 54 while Hill is 32.
Mindy Kaling as Huma Abedin Vice Chairwoman for Hillary Clinton’s Campaign
My friend Andy actually suggested this one and it’s totally on point. As I stated earlier this potential film needs to have comic relief and Kaling can deliver in a big way. I’ve never watched The Mindy Project, however her performance on The Office alone seals the deal for me.
Richard Dreyfuss as Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders
This one may be a stretch but I think Dreyfuss could pull it off. He already has experience in the cinematic political world having played Dick Cheney in Oliver Stone’s W. Also I think it would present a good challenge for the Oscar winning actor. My only concern is at 69 I don’t know how motivated he’d be to take on the role.
Ciaran Hinds as FBI Director James Comey
Ciaran Hinds has made a career playing noble, commanding, and intimidating figures, everything from Julius Caesar on HBO’s Rome, to King Herod in The Nativity Story. Not only does he look the part, I think he’d be perfect for the type of bureaucratic officiousness that Comey projects.
Kate McKinnon as Donald Trump’s campaign manager Kellyanne Conway
If you don’t know McKinnon’s name now you are bound to soon. Her comedic timing and talent is impeccable. And with roles in films like Ghostbusters, her days at SNL are probably numbered. You need someone who can do neurotic well and I think McKinnon would be perfect as Trump’s spin doctor. Plus she has the advantage of already having played her on SNL.
Jennifer Lawrence as Megyn Kelly
Jennifer Lawrence is probably my favorite celebrity. It’s cheesy to say but she truly is America’s Sweetheart. Plus she’s one Hell of an actress. Fox News journalist Megyn Kelley was the source of much drama during the past year, having a public feud with Trump that was nothing short of a trainwreck. Furthermore, her moderation of a Presidential debate in 2015 criticizing Trump’s temperament and credibility drew much attention. Although I’m not a fan of Fox News, I do like Megyn Kelly. She’s intelligent, direct, fearless, funny, and strikingly beautiful. These are all attributes that Jennifer Lawrence shares and if done right, this could be another potential Best Supporting Actress nomination for J-Law.
John Slattery as (future) Vice President Mike Pence
Not only does John Slattery resemble the homophobic shitbag that is Mike Pence, but he just has that political vibe/look going for him. Seriously, if you didn’t know this guy was an actor you’d think he was a politician. Hell if he ever runs for political office people may vote for him just because he looks like a politician. Plus with his turn as Roger Sterling we know he can play smug and self-righteous.
Albert Brooks as Virginia Senator Tim Kaine
I’ll be honest I am not a fan of Albert Brooks. Aside from his role in Drive and his work on The Simpsons, he’s a very vanilla actor. And that’s why I think he’d be perfect for Tim Kaine because truthfully if Kaine was anymore vanilla he’d be a soft serve ice cream cone at McDonald’s.
Kevin Spacey as Former President Bill Clinton
Yes I’m very aware that Spacey doesn’t look at all like Bill Clinton. However, Michael Fassbender didn’t look at all like Steve Jobs and it didn’t matter in the end. The two-time Oscar winner could pull this off in a heartbeat. It would be fascinating to see how Spacey, who already plays the duplicitous and scheming President Frank Underwood on House of Cards would take on a more charming and jovial President like Bill Clinton. (And before you say anything, no John Travolta from Primary Colors returning would be a bad idea.)
Sofia Vergara as (future) First Lady Melania Trump
It’s hard to believe that Trump’s third wife and future First Lady will be former fashion model Melania Knauss. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying models are dumb or that their appearance is the only thing that defines them. It’s Melania’s actions, such as plagiarizing current First Lady Michelle Obama’s speech and her subservient interviews alongside her husband, that speak volumes. I can’t look or listen to her talk without thinking about how much of a ditz she comes across as. I don’t think there’s any other way to play this role than comically, and Modern Family‘s Sofia Vergara fits that to a T. She’s beautiful, funny, and would excel at playing the ditzy Melania.
Meryl Streep as former New York Senator and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
Was there really any doubt about who could fill Hill-dog’s shoes? The woman is a legend. Streep has 19 (count ’em NINETEEN) Academy Award nominations to her name. And with her turn as Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady, we know she can play a tough political figure. At this point Streep could probably play Charles Foster Kane in a remake of Citizen Kane and be able to pull it off.
And finally the moment you’ve all been waiting for….
Mel Gibson as (future) President Donald Trump
Now I know this might not be the most conventional choice but stay with me here. If you don’t think that Donald Trump is at least slightly insane, I’m sure you’ve never seen him on television before. So in my mind the only way to play crazy is to already to be a little nuts. Oscar winning director Mel Gibson fills that bill. The Road Warrior has had his share of public personal struggles and he’s more than just a little manic so (with the right wig and sans beard) I think he could crush this role. Bottom line, regardless of how you feel about Gibson personally there’s no denying his talent. He’s a great actor period.
So there you have it. My lineup for the inevitable movie that will come from this Internet-comment-section-come-to-life that was the 2016 Presidential election. As horrendous as it was to endure, I’ll no doubt be one of the first in line to watch this comedy of errors on the big screen.
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