Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Swing Vote - DVD Review

SWING VOTE (**) - Starring Kevin Costner, Paula Patton, Kelsey Grammer, Dennis Hopper, Nathan Lane, Stanley Tucci, Madeline Carroll, George Lopez, Judge Reinhold, Willie Nelson, Mare Winningham, Chip Esten, Mark Moses and Nana Visitor.
Directed by Joshua Michael Stern.

I watched this hours after Barack Obama gave his inauguration speech. Oh, how dated it has already become.

Kevin Costner plays a moron named Bud, a redneck hayseed unemployed bum who seems borderline mentally disabled. The relationship between him and his daughter was somewhere between Homer & Lisa Simpson and I Am Sam's Sean Penn & Dakota Fanning.

The parts of the movie where I laughed came from the Republican president (Kelsey Grammer) and his campaign manager (Stanley Tucci) and the Democratic challenger (Dennis Hopper) and his campaign manager (Nathan Lane) compromising everything they believe in to win Bud's vote. It turns out that the electoral college is in limbo over New Mexico's vote, and New Mexico came down to a tie, except Bud's vote didn't count. New Mexico law allows Bud to recast his vote in ten days, and so in that time, both parties pull no punches in trying to persuade Bud to vote their way.

Except Bud is such a loser and his daughter is civic-minded enough that while Bud was passed out drunk, his daughter snuck in and cast his vote for him. You'd think this was a Larry the Cable Guy vehicle where the studio said, "Naw, we can do better than that."

Just as the movie was starting to win me over, it ends in a cop-out. Not as jarringly terrible as Rat Race, but a cop-out nonetheless.

No comments: