So, HBO watchers, what did you think of "Recount"?

#1
I thought it was terrific piece of entertainment, not least because the actual events were some of the most exciting in my lifetime and because I was born, raised, and still reside in Florida and voted at my customary Santa Rosa County, Florida, polling place in that election.

The filmmakers definitely made Gore (or his camp) the protagonists/most sympathetic characters and simply couldn't restrain themselves from going way over the top on Katherine Harris (she doesn't need that much help to appear vapid and partisan). But there was certainly some effort to be balanced, particularly with regard to the fact that Gore was never interested in recounts in counties where he was likely to have faired poorly by the recovery of additional votes.

The use of actual newsfootage was excellent, helping recreate the sense of "being there" as the whirlwind of new developments seemed to unfold every hour. Kevin Spacey gave a great performance as the lead guy in Gore's campaign (Ron Klain), and there was a nice subordinate storyline about how Klain had gotten the shaft by Gore before the election and again after (by not being offered a cabinet post in the presumptive Gore presidency). This storyline produced a couple of relatively touching personal moments, as did a brief scene where James Baker (also played terrificly by Tom Wilkinson) told of how he wound up switching political parties years before.

Anyway, I think the movie is definitely worth checking out if you want to revisit a landmark piece of recent American political history.

Avellino, where are you? This is your chance to fire away in a thread where politics is actually the story.:icon_biggrin:
Tony, his spirits crushed after b-lining to the fridge first thing in the morning: "Who ate the last piece of cake?"

Re: So, HBO watchers, what did you think of "Recount"?

#2
Saw it early Monday On Demand and I agree, it was more fairly portrayed than I assumed when I first heard about it. I understand Warren Christopher thinks he got the shaft by the producers and he did come off rather wimpy compared to say Wilkinson's Baker.

Coming at the entire issue from the opposite side as the protagonists in the film, I did hear some of the same type of revisionist history I've grown accustomed to hearing but I was pleased to see them include not just one but two references to the 7-2 decision that really stopped the entire process rather than the 4-3 party line split that most "Bush stole the election" folks would have you believe.

I also think it's unfortunate that they did not include the fact that several news groups did try to count every vote after the process and what they came up with as a post script (namely that Bush still won every recount.)

It was decent entertainment, surely. And some fine acting outside of Dern's Katharine Harris. I agree - she didn't need any help in that regard. :icon_wink:
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Re: So, HBO watchers, what did you think of "Recount"?

#3
Detective Hunt wrote:I also think it's unfortunate that they did not include the fact that several news groups did try to count every vote after the process and what they came up with as a post script (namely that Bush still won every recount.)


Absolutely crucial point that really trumps anything else on the legitimacy of the election.

I was personally happy to see mentioned, albeit almost as an afterthought near the very end of the movie, the fact that the networks were extremely negligent in the way they first reported the results. While I certainly understand and excuse the general population not realizing that part of Florida actually lies in the central time zone (my county included), I can't forgive the major TV news networks' oblivion to the fact. They announced Gore as the winner of Florida at 7:49 EST, 11 minutes before the polls had closed in 11 northwest Florida counties, violating their own policy of not calling a state until all polls in that state have closed. The 11 affected counties just so happen to be the most heavily Republican counties in the state. Local media covered a little nationally-known fact, that hundreds (if not thousands) of people who were still in line to vote when Florida was called went home rather than wait upwards of an hour or two (if you're in line by 7:00 PM, you get to vote no matter how long it takes to get inside) to cast a meaningless vote. That certainly cost Bush a large net gain in votes.

Of course this didn't receive anywhere near the emphasis in the movie that a confusing butterfly ballot in Palm Beach received or that hanging chads in Dade County received. But I was pleasantly surprised that it even rated an offhand mention.
Tony, his spirits crushed after b-lining to the fridge first thing in the morning: "Who ate the last piece of cake?"

Re: So, HBO watchers, what did you think of "Recount"?

#5
To connect it to the present and The Sopranos , eight years after the dead heat in Florida, after Bush won it twice, a Quinnipac poll from last week has Bush's favorability-unfavorability in Florida at 33-63 but it seems pretty likely McCain will win the state. Personally, this reminds me of Tony being shot twice, and failing to change one iota. Did I or AJ mention that McCain voted against high fuel efficiency in cars and alternative energy measures?

As the Sopranos referenced in the final season, Wal-Mart lobbies against port security measures (designed to prevent nuclear terrorism). Obama and other Democrats joined the call for Wal-Mart to drop their opposition to this recommendation of the 9/11 commission. Recently, Wal-Mart urged their employees to vote Republican. And of course "Don't Stop Believing" played at the end of the blissful Republican convention.

Re: So, HBO watchers, what did you think of "Recount"?

#7
My take watching Palin on ABC was that her face reminded me of Dr. Melfi, her answer on the bridge to nowhere reminded me of Tony, her answer on firing an employee who wouldn't fire her brother-in-law (then replacing that employee with a sexual harasser) reminded me of Carmela and her answers on foreign policy reminded me of Christopher. I guess what I'm trying to say is: She'd be a complete disaster, the Great Depression might be upon us and please vote for Obama.
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