Fascists, Fools and Action Heroes: Fictional Presidents in Three Movie Periods
October 5, 2018 @ 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm
Discussion of commercial films featuring fictional presidents with Jack Nachbar,
Bowling Green State University professor emeritus
Jack Nachbar will cover commercial films made during three time periods:
The High Depression and the Early Days of President Franklin Roosevelt in the 1930s through movies “Wild Boys of the Road” (1933); “Gabriel over the White House” (1933); “The President Vanishes” (1934). In these films, a surrogate for President Franklin Roosevelt saves teen protagonists; the president establishes a fascist state in order to ignore Congress and solve the Great Depression, and the president arranges his own kidnapping as a political strategy.
The 1960s, post-President John F. Kennedy and post the Cuban Missile Crisis through three of the following movies: “Kisses for my President” (1964); “Fail Safe” (1964); “Seven Days in May” (1964); and “Dr. Strangelove” (1964). In these films, the first woman president discovers she’s pregnant; the president must figure out a way to avert nuclear holocaust; the president struggles to prevent a military takeover of the government, and there is comic ineptitude in the “War Room” in the middle of a nuclear crisis.
Love and Heroic Action in the Age of Clinton through selections from these movies: “Dave” (1993); “The American President” (1995); “Primary Colors” (1998); “Mars Attacks” (1996); “Independence Day” (1996); “Air Force One” (1997); and “Deep Impact” (1998). In these films, a look-alike subs for the real president; the president falls in love; a sexual scandal threatens to unravel a presidential campaign; the president tries to negotiate with Martian invaders; the president fights aliens; the president takes on murderous hijackers; and the president must prepare the world for the impact of a gigantic comet.