Saturday, February 13, 2010

Jimmy Carter Man From Plains

Wildly uneven documentary. I feel like this could have been fantastic, had it gone one way or another- either cover Jimmy Carter's amazing life, in full, and his incredible legacy, OR cover the unbelievable mess and controversy that surrounded the publication of his 2006 book, Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid.

It seems that Jonathan Demme (usually a FANTASTIC director- my favorite of his is Spalding Grey's Swimming to Cambodia, but Silence of the Lambs is pretty awesome too!) might have set out to do the former- a sweeping bio-pic- and then stumbled into, while filming, the circus that surrounded the book, and couldn't possibly ignore it. And no one could- the insanity resulting from the Nobel Peace laureate using the word "apartheid" while writing about the Palestinian issue inflamed debate international and domestic, and set off near riots.

Interesting movie, but I REALLY wish it had had either more or less- it was tantalizing but unsatisfying.

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