DEATH OF A PRESIDENT
eath of an Objective Perspective
Release Date: October 27, 2006
Starring: Robert Mangiardi, Brian
Boland, Becky Ann Baker, Seena
Jon, and Neko Parham
Audience: Older teenagers and adults
Runtime: 90 minutes
Distributor: Newmarket Films
Director: Gabriel Range
Executive Producer: Robin Gutch
Producer: Simon Finch, Ed Guiney and
Writer: Simon Finch and Gabriel Range
Address Comments To:Newmarket Films
Chris Ball and William Tyrer
Newmarket Capital Group
202 North Danon Drive
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Phone: (310) 858-7472
Fax: (310) 858-7473
Website: www. newmarketfilms.com
TITLE: DEATH OF A PRESIDENT
Quality: * * * Acceptability: -4
RELEASE: October 27, 2006
TIME: 90 minutes
STARRING: Robert Mangiardi, Brian Boland, Becky Ann Baker, Seena Jon, and Neko Parham
DIRECTOR: Gabriel Range
PRODUCERS: Simon Finch, Ed Guiney and Gabriel Range
EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Robin Gutch
WRITERS: Simon Finch and Gabriel Range
BASED ON THE NOVEL/PLAY BY: N/A
DISTRIBUTOR: Newmarket Films
CONTENT: (HHH, PCPCPC, RHRHRH, Acap, L, VV, MM) Very strong politically correct, immoral secular humanist worldview about the War on Terror, conservatives and the neo-conservative policies of President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney from a left-wing perspective, which distorts historical facts and facts surrounding the problem of Islamic terrorism, including the content of the Patriot Act, and stretches probability to make questionable, left-wing political points, with some anti-capitalist elements; five obscenities, including one "f" word, and no profanities; strong violence in that movie depicts a fictional shooting assassination of a real person, who happens to be President George W. Bush (which is disturbing and morally irresponsible), plus violent confrontations between police and demonstrators, including beatings and use of crowd control techniques, image of a surgical incision from a distance, gunshots heard, terrorist shot in the head with no blood shown, banner shows gun held to the head of President Bush (showing the inherent immorality of many on the radical left), protestors burn an American flag, and the dead body of a suicide victim is depicted with some blood; no sex; no nudity; no alcohol; no smoking or drug, but talk about someone who's addicted to drugs, but no drug use shown or overtly implied; and, movie verges on propaganda (though it perhaps doesn't quite step over the line), stretching the truth and an immoral fictionalized use of the assassination of a real-life political leader who is still, thank God, alive.
INTENDED AUDIENCE: Older teenagers and adults
REVIEWER: Joseph L. Kalcso
Writer/Director Gabriel Range has been making the rounds of late on various television news shows explaining with a pained expression in his face that by producing this movie all he tried to do was to stimulate dialogue, and an open discussion about the impact that global terrorism has had on America. DEATH OF A PRESENT, however, leave most fair-minded people with the nagging impression that Mr. Range was not the impartial facilitator he would have people believe, but rather an active participant in subtly advancing some key points on the issues explored in the movie. Of course, the points that he makes in his movie they decisively do not support President George W. Bush's the current policies regarding terrorism and the Islamic fascists who want to murder Americans, Jews, Christians, and their fellow Muslims.
Shot in documentary style, DEATH OF A PRESIDENT documents the events surrounding the fictional assassination of President Bush at a political fundraiser rally in one of Chicago’s most prominent hotels. The story is advanced by on camera testimonials from everyone associated in some way with the events of that fateful night, such as Mr. Bush’s speechwriter, the head of the secret service detail, the Chicago Chief of Police, various demonstrators, crime investigators, and those individuals potentially responsible for the crime, as well as their relatives. The actual assassination scene takes place very quickly, even anticlimactically, and seems to have been modeled after then President Ronald Reagan’s own assassination attempt 20 years ago.
On this particular day, which supposedly takes place sometime in 2007, there is palpable tension in the air, mostly due to the very large and extremely hostile crowd which had turned out to demonstrate against President Bush. Even the secret service agent in charge cannot avoid expressing his deepening feeling of dread about the lurking danger in the upcoming detail. Tragically, and to his utter despair, his worst nightmare eventually comes true. That evening, President Bush will be shot multiple times, and later succumb to his wounds in a local hospital.
What follows is the investigation of the crime. Who could have done it, and why? The many political ramifications emanating from such a momentous event are also explored. Various philosophical and moral positions are voiced by the many characters interviewed in the movie. Most people have heard most of these arguments by real-life pundits, politicians and political activists at one time or another.
A married Muslim man is soon taken under custody and eventually charged with the crime. After finding gun powder residue on his clothes, a past linking him to terrorists, partial finger print evidence, and surveillance video placing him at the scene of the crime, the man is eventually convicted. It is only some time later that a whole new set of facts in the case surface unexpectedly, and the real killer turns out to be possibly someone else. The authorities at every level obstinately ignore the new evidence for political reasons, and move on leaving a potentially innocent man twisting in the legal winds of justice.
Now, this is a stretch, even as fiction, and at this point, those that know better will come to the conclusion that the director’s objectivity has been irretrievably compromised. The convicted Muslim is an innocent victim of racial and religious profiling. Vice President Cheney tries to use the assassination as an excuse to expand the war on terror to Syria. When that strategy fails, he turns his attention to revising the Patriot Act and making it more intrusive into personal freedoms, allegedly, than ever before. Most reprehensible of all, perhaps, is the movie's almost imperceptible flirting with a moral justification for the assassination itself.
The first half of DEATH OF A PRESIDENT is technically impressive to watch, both depressing, and fascinating at the same time. Moody tones permeate the scenes, and the realism achieved is very unsettling. The second half borrows much news and archival footage from the past which had the most likely, unintended, but somewhat comforting, effect of bringing us back to reality, and thankfully it was all a celluloid illusion after all.
Setting aside the questionable taste, not to mention questionable moral judgment, of depicting the assassination of a sitting president, this movie had the potential to truly serve as a catalyst for an honest and enlightening discussion on the significance of the modern Islamic juggernaut, and the various opportunistic regimes around the world foolishly trying to capitalize from it. Regrettably, Director Range could not restrain himself from advancing his own politically correct, left-wing views into the equation, and corrupting the effort in the process. Although not exactly on the same plane, or low, of a Michael Moore hatchet job, the movie's over abundance of politically engineered smoke and mirrors manages to bring it dangerously close to that level of irresponsible propaganda.
Technically speaking, DEATH OF A PRESIDENT is almost flawless. The plot is both fascinating and depressing at the same time. The search for the killers and ensuing investigation is interesting. Regrettably, movie loses most of its dramatic and intellectual impact when the writer/director’s own politically correct, secular humanist agenda overwhelms any sense of impartiality. The movie uses recognizable archival footage is used which has the unintended effect of somewhat detracting from the realism which the movie seeks to convey.