Posted by: Joe Eds | November 2, 2009

If you have Showtime

Tonight at 7:30pm is the premiere of Poliwood, a documentary from director Barry Levinson (Diner, Rain Man) about the blend of Hollywood celebrity and modern politics (get it! Poli-wood) with a primary focus on President Obama’s inauguration and the famous people who were there. I don’t have Showtime, so I’ll have to wait until DVD.

I’d like to watch this doc for several reasons. A) Just curious if Levinson’s documentary chops fare any better than his fictional films. I think Diner and Wag the Dog are great, but I can’t think of a good movie of his in well over a decade. B) This is a very interesting topic that cuts to the heart of politics in terms of “cosmetics.” The idea of famous people making the President look cool and adding to his youth appeal. And C) the influence of the dollar. I have no doubt politicians find, say, a famous actor who took a private jet and limousine to the inauguration lecture about energy efficiency as obnoxious as I do. But they’ll listen because that actor is a donor, and at the end of the day none of the famous people who got good seats to the inauguration free of charge.

Here’s an LA Times interview with Levinson, and a review of the film from Variety.

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