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A Perfect Candidate
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As a former Democratic campaign staffer and consultant myself, the documentary captures the trials and tribulations of any busy statewide campaign and should be shown to all political science majors seeking a career in politics. However, I recommend that you view this film more than once, because by the end of the film, it can be argued that the filmmakers put the Democratic candidate, a very wishy-washy Chuck Robb, in a poor light. The scene where he was running around a supermarket looking for a hand - any hand - to shake was as hilarious as it was pathetic. By the end of the film, I thought that Chuck Robb was a nice guy who was willing to say anything to get elected, and North was a creepy demagogue who pressed a lot of populist buttons out on the stump.
I also felt that the filmmakers successfully captured North's ruthless and egocentric campaign manager as he struggled with the campaign and even some of the "big questions" of his life. He was the most fascinating character in the entire film, and I'm glad that the filmmakers paid so much attention to him. They had this leftie actually ** rooting ** for North's campaign manager by the end of the film.
Although they also are wont to show North and some of the far-right characters who supported him on the campaign trail, the documentary-makers did a fine job of stripping the film of any ideological bias and freely savaging both characters. Again, a must-see for political junkies, and a worthy view for the rest of the viewing audience.
North's campaign advisors make just as interesting a spectacle as North himself. They are, without exception, hard-working, extremely successful people. They make their living by being the sort of people who get called to either back up, or respond to, threats, attacks, complaints, schemes, and calamities. Their bravado thickens the air of the chaos that bleeds through the entire documentary.Read more ›
Like all good documentaries, this film doesn't come across as having an agenda. If there was an underlying agenda, it doesn't come through. The film allows you to be a fly on the wall during this campaign and I was truly amazed at what North's campaign team did and said in front of the cameras. They came across as making no effort to hide any of the bad or cynical things they did or said. At several points in the film you'll find yourself rewinding just to make sure you heard these guys right.
I don't think this film would appeal to casual observers of politics the way that Journeys with George would, but anyone that follows politics seriously will enjoy this film, regardless of your partisan or ideological leanings.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a great doc film covering the 1994 Virgina senate race,between Chuck Robb(D) and Oliver North(R).I enjoyed this,but I thought it was a little bit biased. Read morePublished on December 16, 2012 by Ishmael
This film sounded interesting but my training as a historian prompted me to investigate the authors of the film. Read morePublished on July 22, 2009 by Kindle Customer
Everything was great, the only minor problem was the inside of the case arrived damaged. So now the DVD isn't attached to anything while inside the case and it bounces around.Published on April 11, 2009 by Gonzalo Aida
I ordered a video from Amazon that I needed for a project the day before! With their 'rush service'......I was very pleased to have received the item the next day! Read morePublished on November 30, 2008 by Patricia Zacks
This fascinating fly-on-the-wall look at Oliver North's failed bid for Congress begins as Senator John Kerry reads the long list of accusations against North during the Iran-Contra... Read morePublished on August 4, 2008 by Paco Rivero
As a prof, I sometimes need a break from lecturing. It's true, I don't always like to hear myself talk. When this happens I like to show a movie about American politics. Read morePublished on May 31, 2007 by Dr. Jones
I actually thought A Perfect Candidate was pretty good. I've been a huge fan of Oliver North since 1994 when he ran for U.S. Senate. Read morePublished on February 21, 2007 by noahwfan
Isn't it interesting how little things have changed: the right kowtowing to the religious, stooping for votes. Read morePublished on March 21, 2006 by Wes
A Perfect Candidate is an interesting and thought provoking documentary on the Senate race between Republican Oliver North (of Iran Contra fame) and scandal tarred incumbent... Read morePublished on September 18, 2005 by Brian Niven