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Here's Looking at You

Hollywood, Film and Politics, Fourth Edition

Ernest Giglio

Now in its updated and expanded fourth edition, Here’s Looking at You: Hollywood, Film & Politics examines how the tangled relationship between Hollywood’s global film industry and the politics of federal and state governments manifests itself in the real world of political campaigns and in the fictional world of Hollywood films.

The book contradicts the film industry’s assertion that it produces nothing but entertainment. While it is true that the vast majority of Hollywood films are strictly commercial ventures, hundreds of movies—from Birth of a Nation to The Help, recreated stories like Argo and Zero Dark Thirty and historical pieces such as Lincoln and The Conspirator—contain political messages, both overt and covert.

This new edition begins with President Obama’s re-election and includes new photos and statistical data, three new chapters and eight case studies that provide in-depth analysis of special films that are certain to challenge existing views and stimulate classroom discussion. Here’s Looking at You serves as a basic text for courses in film and politics and as a supplement in American government and film studies courses. Film buffs and general readers will also find it of interest.

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Chapter 6. Real to Reel Politicians: Idealists, Saviors and Scoundrels

Extract

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Chapter 6

Real to Reel Politicians

Idealists, Saviors and Scoundrels

“It could probably be shown by facts and figures that there is no distinctly native American criminal class except Congress.”

—Mark Twain

“Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are dumber.”

—Plato

“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.”

—Abraham Lincoln

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