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Warren Beatty produced, directed, co-wrote, and stars in Bulworth as California Sen. Jay Bulworth, a politician who finds himself in the midst of a nervous breakdown and makes two deals as a result — a $10 million life-insurance policy and a contract on his own life. Awaiting the sweet release of death, he quickly relaxes and begins speaking freely, telling his constituents that they really have no role in politics and that their elected officials are double-dealing swine. Crashing at an all-night club in Compton, the Senator soon learns the joy of rhyming and becomes one with the hip-hop nation, causing his poll numbers to rise. The problem is, he can't find a way to call off the hit-man who's gunning for him. It's clear that Beatty intended Bulworth to be a penetrating political satire, but it seems that the only points he has to make are that money buys legislation and that black folks and white folks don't trust each other. In total, it's a just long hike up the lofty slopes of Mt. Obvious. But taken strictly as a comedy, Bulworth does have its funny moments, and Beatty would do better in the future to concentrate on the talents he has (writing, acting, directing, etc.), and leave the oversimplified social commentary to the talking heads on Sunday morning talk shows. Also starring Halle Berry, Oliver Platt, and Don Cheadle. Good transfer, DD 5.1, trailer, textual supplements.

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