April 1st, 2009 – April Fool

Frost/Nixon:  I watched this last night.  I liked it.  Although in some ways, the entire movie turns on whether or not Richard Nixon actually made that phonecall to Frost in his hotel room.  If, in fact, he did, then that was a colossal blunder.   Like gloating in the 7th inning when winning 11-0 it does nothing but motivate the other guy (who is already down) to put you away.   This is what happened to Frost who was not over-matched but simply did not direct his mind to the no holds barred duel that he was only watching until then.   He had to focus on the 10% of the time that Nixon did stuff that he knew was wrong and did them anyway.    I was surprised that the Nixon team did not subtract from that last taping episode the 25 minutes that Frost spent asking about burning the tapes.

Nixon was a sharp guy, no doubt, but he was also highly suspicious and had an inferiority complex.  Losing his governor’s race earlier in his career scarred him for life.   Anyway, I enjoyed this as I had studied Watergate back in University with John Dean (book Blind Ambition) and All the President’s Men.   It’s an interesting lesson in mistakes and trying to cover them up.  Both the principal actors did a fine job here, and notably the guy who played Nixon (Frank Langella).   That was good.   I loved the mental games he played with him just before going on air “So…did you fornicate last night?…”  LMAO!!

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