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Jimmy Carter Man From Plains
Movie Stats & Links

Starring: Jimmy Carter
MPAA Rated: PG
Web Site: jimmycartermanfromplains.com
Distributed By: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Kiddie Movie: They would probably get bored.
Date Movie: If she likes documentaries.
Gratuitous Sex: Oh, come on, although President Carter does talk about birth control.
Gratuitous Violence: Some news footage.
Action: Nah.
Laughs: Here and there.
Memorable Scene: President Carter explaining how President Bush would grant him travel to another country.
Memorable Quote: "What always hurts you is the editing," talking about an interview he did for Israeli TV.
Directed By: Jonathan Demme

Cool Things About the DVD

Learn French! It's got language choices.
Buy a New TV! Do I have to remind you anymore.
Buy a New Stereo! Not really necessary, TV speakers do just fine.
Anything Else! I'm hoping to go back to listen to Jonathan Demme's commentary track, but probably won't.

Jimmy Carter
Man From Plains

A Movie/DVD Review

 

DVD Rated - PG

It's 2:06 Long

A Review by
The Dude on the Right
Letís get right to it. I will admit that Iím not usually one to like documentaries, and like most I found "Jimmy Carter Man From Plains" a tad too long, but it was a fascinating look at a President, sometimes known most for peanuts and not peace, on a book tour where it seems a lot of people condemn him without even reading the book, or at least even the title.

The book is "Palestine Peace Not Apartheid," and when President Jimmy Carter wrote the book, from his comments, part of his being inspired to write it was based on trying to open a dialogue about something that many have ignored, and leaders have done nothing to work with those involved to solve, namely the fighting between the Palestinians and Israelis. I havenít read the book, Iíll openly admit that, but from my take on it from the documentary, it seems to look at Israelís building a wall to keep suicide bombers out, and how that probably isnít the best solution to long-lasting peace in the region.

For the documentary Jonathan Demme was allowed to film President Carter on his promotional book tour, showing the plusses and minuses of the controversy the book developed. And as intriguing as it is seeing the controversy over the book grow, for me, because Iím not normal, I actually found it more fascinating as a look into the demands of a high-level book tour. Between bookings on TV, bookings on radio, the endless traveling, the work the publicist/assistant does, and the ending frustration when you are doing an interview with someone who obviously hasnít read the book, tries to conduct the interview on hearsay, and just wonít admit they havenít read the book so you could have an open dialogue about the topic, sometimes the only solace is going for a nice swim. The difference with this book tour, though, is the fact that itís one for a former President, creating easier traveling by police escort but meaning the Secret Service are involved, reminding people in line to get their book signed to keep their hands out of their pockets.

The other thing I really liked about this DVD was the look at President Carter just being a man on his farm, a man helping to build houses, a man who just likes helping people, and a man who just happened to be the President of the United States. He relates to young and old, has the tough skin to accept criticism, but is frustrated when people donít seem to have all of the facts, or worse yet, concentrate on the title of the book as "Peace Not Apartheid," believing it is about Israel, skipping the word "Palestine."

The DVD has extra scenes (personally I think the movie should have been trimmed about 15 minutes - throwing those scenes into the bonus features), commentary with the Director, Jonathan Demme, and some recording sessions for the soundtrack, but for the most part the movie portion of this DVD works on its own. It looks great, the music works in transitions, and if you want a great look at what goes into a book tour, especially when the book is controversial and written by a former President, I recommend "Jimmy Carter Man From Plains." Itís 4 stars out of 5.

And on a side note, with many Jonathan Demme pictures, and this comment will make sense to only a few, I found myself on the lookout just to see if somehow newsman, bluesman Buzz Kilman would show up in a cameo. I really expected him to pop up when President Carter was greeting passengers on the airplane so unless I missed him, it looks like Mr. Demme kept this movie a true documentary, maybe keeping Buzz under wraps for his next film, "Dancing with Shiva." Iíll have to wait and see.

Thatís it for this one! Iím The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!!

 

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