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If you hold strong political beliefs leaning right or left about the Reagans, "The Reagans" isn't for you. What you want is either a tribute show with nothing but good to say or a show that's an indictment of the Reagan era, respectively. Go elsewhere to find those films. If you fall somewhere in between and aren't obsessed with political details, you might enjoy "The Reagans." It's an average TV biopic that could've been better, but it does have its moments. It's not the greatest but not the worst either tracing how then actress Nancy Davis met actor Ronald Reagan and then his rise to California governor and then 2-term US president. The real focus of the film is the loving relationship between Nancy and Ronald.Read more ›
James Brolin plays an eerie, and I mean eerie, Ronald Reagan throughout his lifetime. His acting is spot on in portraying a Reagan who is both wonderfully amiable to everyone that he meets, and yet distant to everyone who loved him the most. This Reagan is an actor through and through, and he continues his performance during his White House years. Judy Davis turns in an admirable performance as a hyper-supportive, controlling Nancy Reagan. I couldn't help but still see shades of Judy Garland in her performance here.
Nancy and Ronnie struggle with many issues not uncommon today: the politics of blended families, the politics within a relationship. The movie dares to suggest that Reagan and Nancy weren't perfect demi-Gods that the conservative portion of our population elevate him to be. Perhaps it's too daring to show this man, this couple, as human, foibles and all, and perhaps, that is the nature of the controversy.
Overall, very little was surprising about this movie, other than showing the onset of Reagan's Alzheimer's disease into his second term, which long has been suspected. It certainly wasn't the tell all bashing of the Reagans as some would like us to believe. If you want a glimpse into the lives of the Reagan, perhaps a perusal of this DVD would be in order.
Unfortunately, there is some fire beneath the controversial smoke this movie generated. Judy Davis gives a competent performance, as written, but she is no Nancy Reagan. Her portrayal was too brassy, more of a "Mommie Dearest" and there was clearly a lack of sympathy toward her by the writers. Davis is not convincing at all, especially beside Brolin who practically WAS Ronnie. I think the film would have done well to consult with the actual people involved before going into production.
My very first presidential vote went for Reagan in 1984. As a gay man I am among few who can say that with pride. He made a lot of mistakes during his presidency, but not one with any mean-spiritedness. His underlings took care of that part of the administration. For all the liberal extremists who constantly bashed Reagan, calling him a war-monger and ideologue, just look at what's happening now. He actually kept us out of war. Reagan was misled and ill-served by many influential people working under him. He was a naive and trusting man, to a fault.
This film did a good job of portraying what Ronald Reagan was all about, until it got to the issue of AIDS. I see why the family protested. Come on, even Patti, who always bashed her father's policies, resented this film's slant on the AIDS issue. The fact is that Ronald Reagan was an old man, born of another era, who did not know how to address matters of sexuality. AIDS automatically implied sexuality. Reagan was also a surprisingly shy man. His silence was often the simple result of not knowing what to say.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Brolin and Davis almost become Ron and Nancy. Well done. I would like to see more about Reagan's earlier years.Published 8 months ago by miceatwork
Since it was a stormy day here on the East Coast I decided to watch the three hour film "The Reagans". To my astonishment I watched the whole movie in one setting. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Terrance Richard
A wonderful DVD. James Brolin was incredible. This is "Watch it again"material. I highly recommend it.Published 14 months ago by just my opinion
Reagan was one of my favorite presidents. This movie is a sometimes chilling account of Reagan's life from the time he met Nancy up to his last day as president. Read morePublished 16 months ago by RetroGuy