Game Change aired at 9pm lat Saturday evening detailing the roller-coaster that was the McCain-Palin ‘o8 campaign. John McCain and Sarah Palin have bashed the film as a distortion of facts. Palin PAC has called the film “fact change“. Jay Roach, the director, has certainly come a long way since the Austin Powers trilogy with this film and his previous retelling of the 2000 presidential election in 2008′s Recount which also aired on HBO.
While Palin may still feel the sting of losing and being made a mockery of on the late night talk shows, I did come out feeling more empathetic for her and appreciating the 180 degree turnaround after the Vice Presidential debate. Before that, she was a train wreck. The Katie Couric interview was the point when I felt John McCain would definitely lose the election four years ago. Our running mate was clueless! It was almost as bad as Thomas Eagleton’s revelation mental distress which plagued McGovern in ’72. However, when you see the fallout and how her family was unjustly portrayed and hammered by the left, especially Bristol Palin, you do feel a sense of compassion, which I think is what the film was trying to portray.
In short, Rick Davis and Steve Schmidt are to blame for not properly vetting her, which is explicit clear thirty minutes into the movie. Neither the campaign or its lawyers asked her about specific policy questions or interviewed anyone who knew then-Governor Palin at the time. Both sides assumed the other already did that end of the process. As such, Palin was in over head, couldn’t absorb the massive amounts of information thrown at her, and shut down as a result. On top of the dynamics of American monetary policy and the financial meltdown, she was trying to catch up on the First World War. Whether this event was over dramatized or not, it axiomatic that under such pressures of a campaign anyone would feel overwhelmed. I felt that the film didn’t depict her as un-intelligent or deliberately vapid. She tried to absorb as much as she could with flashcards and seemed eager to learn. Although, I’m sure left-wingers, like Bill Maher, will still continue their no mercy policy towards her.
In all, the film will replay some very embarrassing and distasteful moments in out party’s attempt to defeat Obama. However, the depiction of Palin, in my view, is positive in nature. Even director Jay Roach has said, when filming the debate prep scenes, that he felt sympathy for the former Governor who, after the disastrous interviews, was expected to do well against a distinguished senator from Delaware. She felt trapped and I feel he depicted the level of stress and anxiety that consumed her fairly. Regardless, that is not the Sarah Palin we see today. Upon seeing her at last month’s CPAC, she is poised and precise. She continues to be in the spotlight, fundraising and supporting conservative candidates and their causes with confidence. Her rising star status in the conservative movement and support for the Tea Party, that has altered the American political dynamic, has proven she is a game changer
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