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    Below the Beltway: a Mockumentary of the Anatomy of a Political Scandal

    I saw this movie the other morning on Showtimes Movie Channel. It is the perfect movie to see this political season, it not only brings on the big belly laughs but the story has a edge of the "real"  and as a viewer I became pretty convinced this could easily happen to any politician.

    Below the Beltway is an indie film, from 21st Street Films. 21st Street Films seems to do micro-budget films, $20,000 - $500,000. It might have a micro-budget but it isn't low quality by any means. The films story moves quickly and the story is as hilarious as it is real.

    This is the story of Paul Gibson (Tate Donovan), a disgraced former beltway lobbyist. He is disgraced because there was a viral YouTube video of him speaking to a gathering of reporters and black citizens, he uses the word "niggardly" in reference to social welfare.  A hilarious and ironic scene takes place between describing what happened to Gibson, they laugh about it, and indicate they don't give a shit whether is was deserved or not, in fact is it funnier that what Gibson said wasn't offensive in that he used the term correctly, but it was funny cause no one seemed to understand that! But these staffers they just accept the circumstances, where truth doesn't matter and go on, hoping like hell it doesn't happen to them. At the beginning of the film  Gibson has one client left, the National Rendering Association, (NRA) heh, showing just how far he's fallen. They drop him too, he'd become toxic, not jail time toxic of course, where he might get a book deal, but toxic enough that no one really wanted to be associated with him.

    Gibson is trying to make his way back into politics. He finds out a salacious and scandalous story about a U.S. senator's affair with a high school intern.  What is interesting about the film is that its foci is not just how this information is manipulated on its own, but it is also about lobbyists', politicians', and reporters' manipulation of each other in their attempts exploit the impending scandal. And it makes you laugh hard throughout. It's a wild romp with a twist at the end that is screamingly funny. It's a fun film, I do recommend it.




    CrossPosted @TheAngriestLiberal

    *Full disclosure, I went to boarding school the Spencer Garrett, he plays the disgraced senator and produces the film. But I still y'all should see it if you get a chance, you'll see  Spence  is funny as hell, and you will catch a glimpse of why he made boarding school a much more tolerable place.


    Thanks Tmac. I was certainly hooked by the trailer. Like you said, the quality looks very high. 

    Thanks Oxy, it was so good and really funny, I laughed out loud more than once. I hope you get a chance to see it.

    Sounds like a bunch of black humor to me. hahaha

    Independent low budget films are really something to root for. Half a mill is no pittance except in this context.

    Michael Moore and so many others have just triumphed in this genre.

    The punch line of 'niggardly' reminded me of something else.

    Richard Pryor was on Johnny Carson; so Carson says:

    And now say hello to our next guest Arnold Schwarzenegger!

    Richard Pryor responds:


    It's funny Dick. They guy who wrote the script used to work on the hill, but unlike Michael Moore's stuff this is a film with real actors, more along the lines of Spinal Tap. I think you'd really like the film. The twist at the end is epic, I laughed so hard my stomach hurt!

    On the subject of unusual films, I watched one tonight called "The Trip". Remembering some of your posts about cooking, this film might appeal to you. Two guys from London travel the North country visiting Inn's and such, one is a food critic. Great local color, landscapes. They are both comics and mix gourmet food with trying to outdo one another in impersonations of Michael Caine, Sean Connery, etc.  Very offbeat and funny. 

    Thanks Oxy, I downloaded it tonight so I can watch it tomorrow. I absolutely love Steve Coogan, he is so hilarious.

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