PRIMARY COLORS (1998)
Relevance: It is fitting in this election year that we reflect upon how campaigns run, behind the scenes.ï¿½ This filmï¿½s plot, although fictional, is based on events of a political journalist who followed the 1992 presidential campaign of Bill Clinton.ï¿½ Consider similarities and differences of how campaigns have changed, especially in 2016.
Summary: Based on the fictional book that used elements from the Clinton election of 1992, a man joins the political campaign of a smooth-operator candidate for president of the USA. Throughout his course, he is faced with moral conflicts within the chaos and realities of the American electoral process.
Director: Mike Nichols
Cast: John Travolta; Emma Thompson; Billy Bob Thornton; Kathy Bates; Adrian Lester; Maura Tierney; Larry Hagman
ï¿½ Film information: http://www.imdb.com/
ï¿½ About Primary Colors, the bookï¿½s author and its impact, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/8240675/The-impact-of-Primary-Colors.html
ï¿½ Information on Nominations, Elections and Campaigns: see your textbook, C. 9
Per syllabus: This film is available at the Harris County Public Library-Tomball. It is also available to borrow at various branches of the Harris County Public Library. It is also available to stream, rent or purchase for a fee through in-person locations or internet sites such as Netflix, DirectTV , Amazon, Blockbuster, Barnes & Noble, etc. This film is rated R and contains adult language and other R-rated elements.
View the film. Answer the following questions. Submit your answers in the Drop Box for Film Viewing Exercises. Be certain your name and title of exercise is on your submission.
Consider while viewing:
1. What issues involving morality, race relations, gender roles and military service are introduced? Identify specific scenes.
2. What was Libbyï¿½s conflict with investigating Picker and revealing information about him?
3. What is the political message being sent about campaigns and elections in this film?
4. As the end of the film, does Henry Burton make the right decision?ï¿½ Why or why not?
5. This is a story about campaign negativity and what you are willing to do to win.ï¿½ What aspects of this story do you see in the current campaign of 2016?ï¿½