Thursday, November 14, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks #279: Politics

Hello there and welcome to Thursday Movie Picks a weekly series where you share your movie picks each Thursday. The rules are simple: based on the theme of the week pick three to five movies and tell us why you picked them. For further details and the schedule visit the series main page here.


This week's Thursday Movie Picks is Politics


I do not watch a lot of movies about politics so I thought it was going to be hard to find any picks until I realised I've seen these three. Anyway I'm picking a theme within a theme.

A Man for All Seasons (1966)
I've picked this before, it is one of my favourites. The man of course is Thomas More, Lord Chancellor during Henry VIII's reign who refuses to publicly endorse some of the king's major actions which eventually led to his trial and execution. If you like dialogue heavy and courtroom dramas, I recommend this.

Anne of the Thousand Days (1969)
This is another favourite that I've picked before and if you've seen A Man for All Seasons you have to watch this movie too because it covers what happens after Henry VIII got his way and married Anne Boleyn, but not for very long. I'm sure court life under the reign of anyone is a political minefield, but this Tudor court is spectacularly so and makes great drama for the screen. The movie also looks very pretty and I like Geneviève Bujold's performance as Anne. And if you like both A Man for All Seasons and Anne of a Thousand Days, check out the excellent TV mini-series Wolf Hall which is from the perspective of Thomas Cromwell, another political player from the same period.

Lady Jane (1986) 
Henry VIII is dead and because there are issues with his successors, his grand niece Lady Jane makes a play for the throne which does not pan out, suffice to say she did not wear the crown for very long. See the common theme with my picks now; all set during the Tudor period and (historical spoiler alert!) all the title characters lost their head. While I enjoyed this movie, it is not a favourite like the two above, but it fits with my theme.


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  1. I always love a theme within the theme and this one especially since I love English monarchy films!

    All three of these are wonderful films, I'm a fan of all of them but probably Anne of the Thousand Days is my favorite because of Genevieve Bujold's performance.

    I went with a more modern trio which I suppose have a bit of a theme as well since all have some form of corruption at the root of their stories.

    Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)-Upon the death of one of his state’s senators the idealistic young Jefferson Smith (James Stewart) is appointed by the cynical governor to the U.S. Senate because of his naivety. Once there he is taken under the wing of his idol, the esteemed senior Senator Joseph Paine (Claude Rains). However Paine isn't as noble nor as honest as his reputation would indicate, and he becomes involved in a scheme to discredit the youthful rube, who wants to build a boys' campsite where a more lucrative project could go. Determined to stand up against Paine and his corrupt peers, Smith takes his case to the Senate floor for a showpiece filibuster. One of director Frank Capra’s most successful films is loaded with familiar faces in every role and a memorable performance by Jimmy Stewart.

    All the King’s Men (1949)-The rise and fall of everyman politician Willie Stark (Broderick Crawford) is chronicled. Initially getting into politics hoping to help the working man once in he becomes so corrupt that he no longer knows the difference between right and wrong. A very thinly veiled retelling of the life of the infamously ruthless Louisiana governor and senator Huey Long. Winner of the 1949 Best Picture Oscar as well as Best Actor for Crawford and Best Supporting Actress for Mercedes McCambridge also garnered nominations for director, screenplay, supporting actor and editing.

    Advise & Consent (1962)-Controversial candidate Robert Leffingwell (Henry Fonda) is nominated as U.S. Secretary of State setting the stage for a Senate investigation of Leffingwell's qualifications and igniting a firestorm of backroom machinations. Senator Brig Anderson (Don Murray), the head of the committee, soon finds the proceedings descending into heated arguments with various politicians trying to further their own agendas by any means necessary ultimately leading to tragedy. Blessed with an insanely talented ensemble including Charles Laughton, Gene Tierney, Walter Pidgeon and Peter Lawford among many others plus a surprise appearance by Betty White as a Kansas senator!

    1. I've not seen any of your picks, nor really know much about them, though I know All the Kings Men has been remade.

  2. I haven't seen any of your picks but I like the theme within a theme you went with!

  3. I still need to see Anne of a Thousand Days but love the first one and really liked the 2nd. I also love your theme. Great picks


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