Although many speculated that the film directed by well-known liberal Oliver Stone on the life of the current president, George W. Bush, would be a cheap jab at the president in his last few months as commander in chief, they could not have been more wrong. Stone himself admitted during an interview on the popular television program The Colbert Report, his motives for making the movie were not entirely pure.
However, during the making of the film, Stone said that he had a change of heart.
During the televised interview Stone said, “Making the movie really kind of opened my eyes to this guy Bush. I really started to like him. He’s a great man, and I believe he’s on his way to being a great president.”
The film stars Josh Brolin (No Country for Old Men, American Gangster) portraying “W” from his childhood to the Iraq war. The star- studded cast includes, Elizabeth Banks as Laura Bush, Richard Dreyfuss as Dick Cheney, James Cromwell as George Herbert Walker Bush, Ellen Burstyn as Barbara Bush, Scott Glenn as Donald Rumsfeld and Toby Jones as Karl Rove.
While Brolin comes away with an astounding performance as the film’s protagonist, it is perhaps the rest of the cast that truly brings the story to life, particularly the performances of both Jeffrey Wright, who portrays Gen. Colin Powell, and Thandie Newton as Condoleezza Rice.
“W” chronicles the life of Bush, traveling back and forth between flashbacks of young Bush attempting to escape from his father’s shadow to behind closed doors in the cabinet of the President of the United States.
It has both lighthearted moments and those of high drama and should be considered one of the best films of the year.
The film runs for 129 minutes and is rated PG-13 for language, including sexual references, some alcohol abuse, smoking and brief disturbing war images.
The film is a must see, if not simply for the breathtaking performances — for the even-handed glance at the highest office in the United States.
Its message of hope and redemption speaks to the lost American dream.
For those who hate Bush, this is a chance to understand him. For those who love him, this is a chance to see him for the man he truly is.