Thursday, August 6, 2015

Best of Enemies Movie Review

A Shot in the Dark

IMDb Plot: 'Best of Enemies' is a documentary about the legendary series of nationally televised debates in 1968 between two great public intellectuals, the liberal Gore Vidal and the conservative William F. Buckley, Jr. Intended as commentary on the issues of their day, these vitriolic and explosive encounters came to define the modern era of public discourse in the media, marking the big bang moment of our contemporary media landscape when spectacle trumped content and argument replaced substance. Best of Enemies delves into the entangled biographies of these two great thinkers and luxuriates in the language and the theater of their debates, begging the question, 'What has television done to the way we discuss politics in our democracy today?'

It began as a "shot in the dark," but before long, two "disruptors of ideas" gave birth to pundit television. At first glance, neither Buckley or Vidal seemed all that interesting (especially outside political circles) but together, they rivaled Ali vs. Frazier; and their heated debates across the 1968 Democratic & Republican conventions revolutionized the way we look at politics. What makes Best of Enemies so enthralling is that both combatants thought they were superior to each other, and were determined to prove it. Great back & forth between two brilliant egomaniacs: What could be more entertaining than that?