Sunday, December 21, 2008


Netflix never does me wrong.

Due to my overwhelming and inexplicable interest in the year 1968 (movies, books, documentaries -- you name it, I'll absorb it), Netflix recently recommended the movie "Bobby." As I'm sure you can guess, it's about the assassination of Bobby Kennedy. I thought now seemed like a good time to watch it, since NYC just renamed the Triborough Bridge in his honor. Also, I'm fixated on assassinations at the moment - right now I'm reading a fantastic book called Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln's Killer.

Anyway, the movie really took me by surprise. I thought it seemed odd that Netflix said the "supporting cast" was full of superstars (William H. Macy, Anthony Hopkins... Ashton Kutcher...) -- now it all makes sense. Bobby is barely in the movie, except in numerous authentic grainy news clips, and yet at the end of the movie I was sitting on my sofa sobbing like a fool. (I guess I get a bit involved with movies.)

I love films based on true stories. Zodiac, Capote, The Last King of Scotland, Shattered Glass, All the President's Men... the list goes on and on. I'd watch them a million times over. I thought this one was interesting because it's so focused on the other people who were shot during Bobby's assassination. You become captivated by the lives of the guests at the hotel, almost as if Bobby is a mythical figure drawing them all together. Then he gets shot - and some of them get shot too. It's tough not to get wrapped into the story. They also make some interesting choices with video and audio clips. Some might not like how often they're used, but I think it adds a powerful touch... and a reminder that this isn't just a fictional story.

However, I do have to say that based on what I've read about the actual assassination, most of the characters in the movie are purely fictional -- which I think is unfortunate and quite misleading since it's paired with news clips that were not fictional. Regardless, it's a movie that was well worth my 2 hours.

In case you haven't seen it (and especially if you're not as unhealthily intrigued by 1968 as I am and maybe don't have the sequence of events morbidly memorized), it's definitely worth a watch.

"Few will have the greatness to bend history itself, but each of us can work to change a small portion of events -- and in the total of all those acts will be written the history of this generation." - Robert F. Kennedy


Salt Water said...

I love movies that are off the beaten path. If you find yourself interested in a calm, but inverting experience, then try "The Station Agent" from Netflix. I would suggest you not read anything about it. The story line is nothing. The experience is very unusual, beautiful. I rated it five stars. Nice blog. Thanks.

Lisa said...

Thanks for the recommendation!