Bush biographers mixed on script for Oliver Stone's 'W'
April 07, 2008
President George W. Bush is a foul-mouthed, reformed drunk obsessed with baseball, Saddam Hussein and a conflicted relationship with his dad. Naturally, what a director does with a script is how a movie is ultimately judged, but because this screenplay depicts a sitting president and the run-up to the war in Iraq, its authenticity is becoming a hotly debated subject -- not to mention the fact that any historical material Stone has touched has become controversial. Everybody calling everybody else nicknames and chatting about whether to go to war as if they were chatting about how to bet on a football game really misses the mark of how many White Houses, including this one, are run.
In fairness though, if this movie were released after the elections were over, then it would not find an audience. This is the only time, if any at all. But of course, the timing is no accident. It is meant to be political and a sharp arrow in Mr. Obama's quiver. Even if I find the description of this movie as an unserious look at the presidency of Mr. Bush, I will see it, if only to understand the new lows of American political discourse, this time paraded on the big screen instead of the small. Who can deny that the media, conservative and liberal alike, are clanging cymbals, full of strife, clamour and confusion, especially at a time when intelligent discourse would have changed the face of the election?