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From the Oscar®-nominated writer and producers of Frost/Nixon and The Queen comes a powerful new look at the human side of iconic world leaders. In 1993, Tony Blair was a rising young star in British politics. Three years later he ran for Prime Minister – and began a “special relationship” with U.S. President Bill Clinton that endured through triumph, conflict and personal scandal. HBO Films presents Michael Sheen, Golden Globe® nominee Dennis Quaid, Emmy® and Golden Globe nominee Hope Davis, and Helen McCrory in the behind-the-scenes story of two world leaders who forged a loyal, if tempestuous, friendship out of the crucible of political necessity: The Special Relationship.
Terrific performances and an excellent script combine in The Special Relationship, another winner from HBO Films. The title refers to the bond between the United States and Britain in general, but the focus here is on the friendship and political partnership between President Bill Clinton (Dennis Quaid) and Prime Minster Tony Blair (Michael Sheen) in the 1990s. It's an intriguing dynamic. Clinton was already into his second term when Blair took office in 1997, at which point England was clearly the tail to America's dog; younger, far less experienced, and somewhat starry-eyed, Blair welcomed Clinton's endorsement, coveted his approval, and was thrilled to get them both. But the roles were reversed not much later when Clinton, caught up in the Monica Lewinsky scandal and unwilling to take a firm stand on the war and ethnic cleansing taking place in Kosovo, was eclipsed by the charismatic, more forthright P.M.--who gave a rousing speech in support of the president, only to find that Clinton had been lying about the Lewinsky affair all along. All of this is delineated in entertaining and often amusing fashion by scriptwriter Peter Morgan (whose earlier films include The Deal and The Queen, both of which also featured Sheen as Blair); his fictional re-creations of private conversations between the principals are fascinating, including Clinton and Blair discussing how to create a permanent center-left majority and especially Clinton's gradual confessions of adultery to wife Hillary (Hope Davis). The casting is also exceptional. Sheen is thoroughly at ease in his role by now, as is Helen McCrory, who also played Blair's wife Cherie in The Queen. The real revelation is Quaid. Though perhaps not an obvious choice, he not only looks and sounds convincingly like Clinton but also captures his charm, swaggering confidence, and consummate political know-how, while Davis is nearly perfect as the woman whose ambition and steely resolve were not about to be sidetracked by Bubba's dogging around. All in all, The Special Relationship is delightful, dishy fun. --Sam Graham
For Vietnam Veterans, there doesn't seem to be any mention of That Deceitful little man's draft evasion. 'nuff said!Published 25 days ago by D. Steiner
This is a pretty good movie. However they showed the Clintons as a couple with huge Who's which turned me out a little.Published 1 month ago by michael
THE MAIN EVENTS ARE MOST INTERESTING.....ESPECIALLY HOW THIS SPECIAL RELATIONSHIP TURNS.
IT HAD TO BE IF WORLD LEADERS NEED TO HAVE AN "AUTHORITY" IN THEIR COUNTRY,... Read more
It was very frustrating to watch Dennis Quaid's mouth move and the words were coming from an actor doing the voice over and it did not match
Dennis' timing...... Read more