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Recount: The Story Of The 2000 Presidential Election (2008)

Kevin Spacey , Laura Dern  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)

Price: $12.79 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Product Details

  • Actors: Kevin Spacey, Laura Dern, John Hurt, Ed Begley Jr., Bob Balaban
  • Format: Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: Unknown
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: HBO Studios
  • DVD Release Date: August 19, 2008
  • Run Time: 116 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #112,547 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Recount: The Story Of The 2000 Presidential Election" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

At the height of the 2000 election season, CBS anchor Dan Rather quipped, "The presidential race is crackling like a hickory fire." Director Jay Roach (Austin Powers) recaptures that blaze in his smart HBO docudrama about the thriller in Palm Beach County. Written by actor Danny Strong, Recount bounces between the Sunshine State, Gore's Tennessee headquarters, and Bush's Texas stomping grounds. Gore adviser Ron Klain (an excellent Kevin Spacey) provides a privileged window into those weeks when the American public first became familiar with obscure terms like "hanging chad." (Since Klain has an ax to grind with the vice president, neither he nor Gore appear completely heroic.) First, the Democratic candidate pulls ahead; then he falls behind. Just as he prepares to concede, Klain's colleague, Michael Whouley (Denis Leary), spots an anomaly in the vote count, and the race continues. Enter eccentric Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris (Laura Dern, a certain Emmy nominee), who orders a recount, and former Secretaries of State Warren Christopher (John Hurt) and James Baker III (Tom Wilkinson), who oversee a process that ends up in the Supreme Court (where Ed Begley Jr.'s David Boies represents Gore). Produced by the late Sydney Pollack, who originally intended to direct, Recount skillfully integrates news footage with dark comedy, most provided by the foul-mouthed Whouley and Bush adviser Ben Ginsberg (Bob Balaban), who's still livid about JFK's victory over Nixon. If the Democrats come across as more sympathetic, the Republicans come across as more colorful--and strategically effective. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

Product Description

HBO Films presents Recount, the true story chronicling the turbulent weeks in Florida after the 2000 presidential election. The film explores one of the most dramatic and controversial events in recent U.S. election history that shook a nation's faith in the ability to stage a fair and open election. Recount takes a look at the ordinary people caught up in the extraordinary events that would ultimately decide the leadership of the country.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
45 of 49 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Every Vote Counts June 4, 2008
What exactly went on behind the scenes of the 2000 election voting disaster, the one that decided the fates of Al Gore and George W. Bush? The HBO film "Recount" gives what I believe to be a fair representation of an historical event, which is ironic since the recount process put the very concept of fairness under intense scrutiny. We obviously all have an opinion on who rightfully won the presidency eight years ago, but I'm not here to debate who was right and who was wrong; I wasn't even old enough to vote back in the year 2000. I'm only here to review a movie. Yes, it tackles a political subject, but that doesn't mean it takes a definite political stance--generally speaking, each side has equal say, and not surprisingly, each side makes valid and not-so-valid points. Writer Danny Strong deserves a lot of praise, not only for showing both sides of the political spectrum, but also for not forcing us to agree with any side in particular.

I have no doubt the recount was more exhausting for those running the campaigns, simply because they were doing all the hard work; both candidates did nothing more than wait for the end result. Overseeing much of Gore's campaign was his former Chief of Staff, Ron Klain (Kevin Spacey), a loyal Democrat embittered after being replaced, first by Tony Coelho, then by Bill Daley (Mitch Pileggi). On election day--November 7--the Gore team gets word of a problem in Palm Beach County, Florida: a number of voters, confused by the ballot voting system, felt they had accidentally voted for Independent Pat Buchanan. This led to a number of TV networks receiving differing poll numbers by the end of the day, some confirming Gore's victory, others confirming Bush's.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Recount: a historical re-enactment worth a re-watch June 23, 2008
Like the " movie Titanic" we all know how this one is going to end. But don't let that stop you from watching Recount. Spacey, as always, delivers a believable and realistic performance. His presence somehow demands your attention. Laura Dern is completely transformed and becomes Kathleen Harris, the Florida Secretary of State. Her performance is by far the best.

There are details and personality involvements that even the most politically active person was probably not aware of that the production reveals, making it worth your time and attention. No matter how many hours you watched CNN when this historical drama unfolded, you will learn things about the Florida recount that you did not know.

If you are a history buff, you will want to add this to your collection. It is right up there with "Missiles of October."
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20 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Recount Counts June 23, 2008
You can count on anything Kevin Spacey does as great, but the big surprise in this movie was Laura Dern playing Katherine Harris. She was outstanding as the Florida Secretary of State.

The movie does a great job of showing what went on behind the scenes, including the strategies of both sides, that led to the final outcome. (I guess I don't need to worry about disclosing the ending.)

If you watch this movie and still think we live in a democratic country, you need to see it again.
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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every Vote Counts - Maybe July 15, 2008
"Recount" is a brilliant docu-drama using actors and lots of real television footage to encapsulate the 2000 election fiasco in which George W. Bush was given the Presidency by a 5 to 4 vote by the Supreme Court of the United States in an unprecedented intervention in a presidential election recount.
I was a resident of Florida during this fateful period in American history, and it was an embarrassing and enlightening moment for Florida voters.
Kevin Spacey does a superb acting job portraying the point man for the Gore recount in the Sunshine State. Ex-Secretary of State Jim Baker played smart hardball for the Republican cause while ex-Secretary of State Warren Christopher proved how gutless, prim, proper, and pitiful he was as Gore's first leader in the recount. Joe Lieberman, Gore's vice-presidential running mate, helped to undermine the Gore recount.
The deck was stacked against Gore by Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris (with a devastating portrayal by Laura Dern) and by Governor Jeb Bush. They had laid the groundwork for a Republican victory. Gore nationwide won the popular vote by a half million votes, but in Florida there were improper vote counting, all kinds of screw-ups, poorly designed ballots, undercounting, and the disqualification of thousands who were turned away from the polls because their names were incorrectly placed on a felons' list.
Does this movie make a compelling case that an election was stolen? Yes. Is the movie biased in favor of the Gore faction? Yes. Should the Democrats have been more
aggressive and fought harder, earlier in the recount? Yes. Should Gore himself have gone to Florida and led the charge thus showing himself as gutsy and strong-willed enough to be President? Yes.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Watch it just for Laura Dern alone! May 17, 2009
HBO movie about the Florida voting recount in the 2000 presidential election. Especially hard to watch if you're a Democrat, it stirs up frustrations that you thought you had long buried and forgotten. Given the apparent dryness of the material, it's surprising how well this zips along, and with a good balance of comedy and drama. Special marks to Laura Dern for her incredible portrayal of Katherine Harris!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic movie, great cast, and lots of information!
When this show came out I heard that republicans and democrats alike all said that the basic story was accurate, and even the individual parts played on both sides were pretty spot... Read more
Published 28 days ago by Eric J Groom
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful docudrama film; first-class HBO stuff.
What happened in Florida when "W" beat Al Gore?
This is a fine docudrama explanation
this very American spectacle. Read more
Published 2 months ago by John R Dean
5.0 out of 5 stars Recount
A good accounting of the events of the 2000 election and everything that took place to finalize the election from the Electoral College standpoint.
Published 2 months ago by Tom Drahozal
5.0 out of 5 stars A great gift...
My cousin doesn't have HBO and when I mentioned this movie gave an accurate account of what happened, he became curious so I bought it for him. A must see for all!
Published 2 months ago by C.E.
4.0 out of 5 stars Recount movie
I used the movie as a teaching aid for my US Government class, and the senior students were engaged throughout the viewing.
Published 3 months ago by Lisa Cangro
5.0 out of 5 stars Unbeliveable, scandilous !
It was fascinating , beginning to end. An eye-opener following the election & what happened to reach the conclusion. Read more
Published 4 months ago by PGA PRO MOM
5.0 out of 5 stars Must see
Kevin Spacey is really gifted.
A great film that illustrates how corrupt money and politics are and together are lethal.
Published 4 months ago by joanne
3.0 out of 5 stars Special Movie For Politcal Drama Buffs In The Florida Capital
As a Tallahassee resident interested in politics this movie is particularly fun to watch. However, a friend of mine is portrayed fairly negatively in the movie and those of us who... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Florida Native
4.0 out of 5 stars I still get frustrated
This is a great rendition of a rather unique moment in history. It still stirs me when I see this film - how it is that the actions of a few people had such a giant impact upon... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Billinalaska
5.0 out of 5 stars "Who won the election? WHO WON?!!"
If you'd like to know more about the 2000 Florida Recount but cannot sit through a boring book, this movie is for you. Read more
Published 9 months ago by J. Hojnacki
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