The Contender (2000)

ROD LURIE

Bil’s rating (out of 5):   BBBB

USA/Germany/United Kingdom, 2000.  Cinerenta Medienbeteiligungs KG, Cinecontender, Battleground Productions, SE8 Group, Battlefield.  Screenplay by Rod Lurie.  Cinematography by .  Produced by , , , , .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  Academy Awards 2000.  Golden Globe Awards 2000.  Independent Spirit Awards 2000. Phoenix Film Critics Awards 2000.  Toronto International Film Festival 2000.  

Joan Allen is fantastic as a woman chosen to take over for the late Vice-President, then plunged into controversy when a story surfaces that she once participated in a gang-bang in college that someone happened to photograph. Refusing to play the dirty games some politicians play, she offers no comment on the issue, maintaining that her private life is not for public scrutiny. The Conservative zealot assigned to lead her Vice-Presidency appropriation (Gary Oldman) believes otherwise. Compelling drama, with a first-rate script and strong direction. Ignore the slightly overdone final speech by Jeff Bridges as the President; Allen gives the film its meaning and sums it all up beautifully right before he gets around to speaking.

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