Sunday, July 8, 2007

Bobby Wins the Vote

***1/2 out of ****

Bobby is an up-lifting and at times heart-breaking semi-fictional drama focusing on 22 people, played by some of Hollywood’s most famous actors, showing their affection for Senator Robert F. Kennedy; a man that was being called President even before he was elected.

The story begins June 6th, 1968, the day of Kennedy’s assassination. It takes place at the Ambassador Hotel a.k.a. election headquarters and the story ends up at the point of Kennedy’s assassination.

The first piece of the story is with John Casey the Hotel Greeter (Anthony Hopkins) reminiscing about the past with his friend Nelson (Harry Belafonte). The next story is with Kennedy campaigners Wade (Joshua Jackson) and Cooper (Shia Labeouf) who decide to blow off campaigning for the day to do LSD with hippie/drug-dealer Fisher (Ashton Kutcher).

We then meet the kitchen staff, (Laurence Fishburne, Freddy Rodriguez, Jacob Vargas) who talk about the death of Martin Luther King and how Kennedy is the future to continue his path against discrimination, racial equality and about ways to get along with the ruling white majority.

The next story-line is with the hotel’s beautician Miriam (Sharon Stone) who is in a position to meet many of the Hotel guests, married to the hotel Manager Paul (William H. Macy), whom is sleeping with the switch-board operator Angela (Heather Graham). Miriam meets Diane (Lindsay Lohan) who is frivolously marrying her classmate William (Elijah Wood) so he doesn’t have to go to Vietnam in fear for his life. Miriam also meets the aging-booze-hound-cigarette-in-one-hand singer Virginia Fallon (Demi Moore) who often says hurtful things from fear of losing her audience. Virginia’s husband Tim is played by Emilio Estevez, who produced and directed the film.

The next story is of Czechoslovakian journalist Lenka Janacek (Svetlana Metkina) who wants to interview Bobby but has a hard time securing a meeting because she is representing a Socialist country.

The final story is with Samantha (Helen Hunt) a woman who finds “happiness” only in shopping for the latest fashion trends and her depressed husband Jack (Martin Sheen) who points out to Samantha that finding true happiness is their love for each other.

In the end all of the characters come together at Bobby’s assassination, showing their sorrow and the good that they found in his beliefs and what they could have done for us all.

All of the scenes with Robert F. Kennedy are archive footage of him; including the assassination. The ensemble of 22 actors and actresses, all are superb and give compelling emotional performances. However it seems as if the younger cast members steal the show such as Lindsay Lohan, Elijah Wood, Nick Cannon as Dwayne the head poll-counter at Campaign central, and Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Susan, a waitress at the Ambassador aspiring to become an actress.

Bobby is a film to see for all age groups. It is a tribute to those that remember what Robert F. Kennedy stood for the day he was assassinated and an engaging history lesson for the rest of us showing why Robert F. Kennedy was undeniably a person to be remembered.

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