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Bob Roberts (1992)

Eva Amurri , Tom Atkins  |  R |  DVD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Eva Amurri, Tom Atkins, Merrilee Dale, Giancarlo Esposito, Peter Gallagher
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Lions Gate
  • DVD Release Date: August 14, 2001
  • Run Time: 102 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005OOQ2
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #107,303 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Bob Roberts" on IMDb

Special Features

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Editorial Reviews

Tim Robbins stars as BOB ROBERTS, a radical folksinger turned senatorial candidate, in this satirical comedy that blends his campaign trail with singing, music videos and scandal. BOB ROBERTS is a hilarious film that will change the way you look at American politics!

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
43 of 46 people found the following review helpful
Format:VHS Tape
"Bob Roberts," Tim Robbins' 1992 fictional account of the political campaign of a folk-singing conservative businessman, is a remarkable film. Echoing D.A. Pennebaker's 1966 documentary "Don't Look Back" (which covered Bob Dylan's 1965 U.K. tour; a number of scenes in "Bob Roberts" are cribbed directly from the Pennebaker film), "Bob Roberts" follows the title character (played by Robbins, who also directs and writes here) in his 1990 Senatorial campaign against Brickley Paiste, a once-vigorous, but now-weary and increasingly disenchanted New Frontier-era liberal democrat (played by author Gore Vidal). Roberts, who had made a fortune on Wall Street during the '80s, first gains national attention in the late '80s with a pair of critically panned, but commercially successful albums (clever homages to two early '60s Dylan albums) of right-wing country-folk songs. Using his musical fame as a springboard, Roberts embarks on his political career, backed by press aide Chet MacGregor (Ray Wise) and the shadowy Lukas Hart III (Alan Rickman, whose Mephistophelean presence almost steals the movie). Along the way, Roberts is tailed by journalist Bugs Raplin (Giancarlo Esposito), who is eventually framed for an assassination attempt on Roberts when he gets too close to uncovering Hart's and Roberts' shady involvement in both the Iran-Contra and S&L debacles of the '80s. Largely viewed at the time of its release as a broad slap at the New Right, in retrospect Robbins is nearly as critical of the Old Left. Vidal's Brickley Paiste is old, tired, and nearly irrelevant (and, sadly, seems to know it). If Robbins is scathing in his indictment of the Right, Paiste symbolizes Robbins' criticism of the Left for their lack of energy and ideas. Read more ›
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28 of 33 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars truer today than when it first came out November 30, 2004
Format:DVD
I saw this film when it first came out in '92, and thought it was okay, but rewatching it during the 2004 election season I was appalled by how many of the absurdities depicted had come true, with cynical pandering and manipulation at every turn. The only thing it's missing are voting machines that count backward! The title character, played by Tim Robbins (who also wrote and directed), is a right-wing folk singer pursuing a senate seat, running against an incumbent played by Gore Vidal. The songs and album covers are very funny, and there are many cameo appearances.

DVD extras include three commentary tracks, 22 minutes of deleted scenes, stills, 3 music videos, cast notes, production notes, a trailer and tv spots.

Worthwhile viewing, good extras.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Commedable But Too Obvious! July 6, 1999
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
I loved the wry, Republican-bashing in this film, but did it have to spell everything out in caps? We were quite aware of Bob Roberts' packaging concept without it having to be explained to us by various characters, especially so humorlessly. John Cusack's little lecture was especially patronizing.
Being spoon-fed a message only diminishes your enjoyment of a film, especially a satire. But I'm opposed to it on more than aesthetic grounds. Mainstream Americans hate liberals because they see us as elitist, condescending, and a little contemptuous of them. Heavy-handed films like this only reinforce that image.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Make Money by any means Necessary October 13, 2003
Format:DVD
By 1992, actor and leftist-liberal firebrand Tim Robbins had come a long way since his thankless role in the George Lucas uber-flop "Howard the Duck", and "Bob Roberts" displayed that the actor who had turned in fine performances in gritty movies like "The Player", "Jacob's Ladder", and---erm---"Erik the Viking" (he played Erik, and *I* liked it, anyway) had solid directorial chops, as well.
"Bob Roberts" is a gimlet-eyed little mockumentary chronicling the rise, fall and rise of merciless, villainous, Machiavellian and media-savvy politician Bob Roberts, who---as the film's opening sequence makes clear---is a man of many talents: former West Pointer, Wall Street trader and stock market guru, self-made millionaire, and right-wing folk singer.
Folk singer?
That's the clever little hook on which Robbins hangs his skillful little fusillade against mindless political partisanship: Roberts has appropriated the Rebel Prophet image crafted at Woodstock for himself, and---horrors!---for right-wing Republican politics. Roberts is an ingenious political animal, having picked up a guitar and made the transition from Woodstock to Wall Street---and now he wants Main Street.
The plot is simplicity itself: "Bob Roberts" is played with a straight face as the'documentary' of the 1992 Bob Roberts Pennsylvania senatorial campaign, produced and 'directed' by fictional documentarian Terry Manchester (played convincingly by veteran British actor Brian Murray).
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars References to other documentaries April 15, 2004
By A Customer
Format:DVD
To better appreciate this movie, it's good to know that it makes references (many, in fact) to the 1966 Bob Dylan documentary "Don't Look Back." If you haven't seen this earlier movie, naturally you won't pick up on these references (which are funny). What's interesting, though, is that at about the same time "Bob Roberts" was being made, the director of "Don't Look Back" was making a documentary (or perhaps had made ...), similar in nature to his earlier film, about Bill Clinton's campaign for the presidency called "The War Room." Cinema verite, no doubt.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting
This movie adds humor to the political world. It is very interesting and original. Keeps your attention. I would recommend it regardless of your political views.
Published 3 months ago by Emily Fleck
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Funny Satire, Yet Painfully True
Made in the wake of the first Gulf War of 1991, BOB ROBERTS takes a satirical look at the senatorial race involving the eponymous hero of the title (played by Tim Robbins) and his... Read more
Published 16 months ago by Dr. Laurence Raw
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazingly prescient musical mockumentary ...
I find it truly sad to say that this film predicted reality before it ever happened. Tim Robbins, in an amusing bit of self-casting, portrays a Republican candidate that would... Read more
Published 23 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellence and Expedience
I got my DVD days ahead of the Oct. 18 date I was given. It was shipped sensibly in a bubble wrap, and was in excellent condition. Read more
Published on October 27, 2011 by Melina Neet
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascism - American Style....
A response to the "conservatives" dropping negative reviews for this film:

a) The criticism is made that the conservatives and Right wingers portrayed in the film are no... Read more
Published on July 29, 2011 by xxgrendelxx
1.0 out of 5 stars Socialist dribble
If you are a liberal or a socialist, pretty much any left wing paranoiac you will love this film.
It's entire purpose seems to be that of putting on screen all of the bile... Read more
Published on January 7, 2011 by Gary
3.0 out of 5 stars "Are You a Communist?"
Still weirdly prescient as it approaches its 20th Anniversary, Tim Robbins' "Bob Roberts" is a mockumentary that skews the far right with a very thick blade. Read more
Published on February 17, 2009 by Tim Brough
5.0 out of 5 stars Left-wing satire of right-wing politics
"Bob Roberts" is a mockumentary about the senatorial campaign of a rich folk singer with a set of right-wing beliefs. Read more
Published on June 24, 2008 by Genevieve Hayes
4.0 out of 5 stars Scathing look at politics
A documentary filmmaker follows the campaign of folk singer-turned-senatorial candidate Bob Roberts (Tim Robbins). Read more
Published on February 8, 2008 by Kona
5.0 out of 5 stars great film
Bob Roberts is very funny and if your shrewd enough to understand it all it applies to both parties in many ways and show's how blind Patriotism turns the fool
Published on September 6, 2007 by Daniel Gentry
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