When HBO announced it was making a film based on the 2008 election chronicle “Game Change” conservatives imagined yet another GOP hit job from a network known for its liberal bias.
The book painted a glowing portrait of Obama while McCain’s campaign was cast as chaotic at best. Turns out the film is worse – much worse – than any Red State denizen could imagine, according to a review based on an early screening of the film.
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While the book covered both the Obama and McCain campaigns, the movie focuses like a laser on Palin. And none of it is pretty:
It is made crystal clear that Palin didn’t really understand why there was a North Korea and a South Korea. She clearly thought that Saddam Hussein was behind the 9/11 attacks. She needed to have Germany’s role in the Second World War explained to her. She thought “the Fed” referred to the federal government, not the Federal Reserve. The Governor of Alaska was as ignorant of the world as a four-year-old….
In one scene, she is catatonic, curled up, immobile in a fetal position because she’s been dieting. In another she screams at a McCain staffer on her cellphone and then smashes the phone against a wall. She is depicted as someone who could be taught to memorize generic replies to questions from journalists, but could not recognize her own ignorance. As the movie shows it, after every appearance before cheering crowds her ego swelled and she simply declined to listen to any advice about anything.
An interesting side note is how the assembled scribes reacted to the screening:
Watching it with the American journalists was an education. At first, as the movie opened with McCain (Ed Harris) and his advisers discussing potential running mates, there was a jaunty satirical tone. There was laughter in the room. Even as the Palin character (Julianne Moore plays her with aplomb) entered the picture, all gee-whiz enthusiasm, there was lots of laughter.
“Game Change” debuts on HBO March 10.