Spoiler Points for Swing Vote (2008)

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Spoiler Points for Swing Vote (2008) [PG-13] 100 minutes
WIP™ Scale: $14.00
DVD Release Date: Unscheduled (please check back)
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Spoiler for Swing Vote
• Molly Johnson (Madeline Carroll) only wants one thing in this world—for her hapless father, Bud (Kevin Costner) to vote in the upcoming presidential election about which she's grown so passionate.
• The night of election day, Bud, who lost his job earlier in the day due to what he calls 'insourcing-the brining of internationals into the USA to do local jobs', fails to show up at the polling place.
• As Molly waits, she starts to realize he's not coming and decides to take matters into her own hands given that the election judges are both sound asleep. She pops in, forges his signature on the ledger, swipes a ballot, and heads into the voting booth. One of the judges, however, realizing it's almost time to close, kicks out the power cord and freezes the voting machine locking out but recording the vote attempt.
• Frightened by the thought of being caught, Molly flees with the voting stub.
• The next day, however, with the nation election hinging on the electoral votes of the state of New Mexico and then on the one registered but not submitted vote needed to break the tie vote in the state, the Attorney General arrives to ascertain the authenticity of the mistake and the voter. Bud plays along as if he's voted figuring out in the conversation that Molly must have done it for him.
• He swears to cast his vote again in 10 days. This decision and the snoopy news work of telejournalist, Kate Madison (Paula Patton) opens up a gigantic can of worms not just for Bud and Molly but for the entire world as he suddenly becomes the most powerful voter in American history. His vote will determine if incumbent GOP Andrew Boone (Kelsey Grammer) or challenger Donald Greenleaf (Dennis Hopper) will become the next President.
• Both candidates throw down the gauntlet to try to capture Bud's vote, each successively stooping lower and lower right up until they each suddenly realize the importance of their own integrity and what the American people value most in the end.
• This invaluable lesson weighs heavily on both men.
• After Bud is made an international sensation, Bill Maher challenges that Bud's nearly a threat to national security given that he's so ill-informed about the issues as to have made this election a laughing stock. This hurts both Bud and Molly who's been answering the thousands of letters Bud has received from people hoping to influence his vote to direct the world in some way better for them.
• Eventually, Bud accepts the challenge Molly sets for him and agrees to hold a debate between the men to win his vote. But, he has to be brought up on the issues. Meanwhile, Kate Madison figures out that Molly is the one who really tried to vote and wants to out this story for her own gain. When she and Bud, however, realize the magnitude of the issues and the importance of this vote, all three work together to prepare Bud for the debate. Kate buries the family secret.
• The debate commences, but the film only explores one question, and the film ends without revealing who won because that's not the point of the film. The point is that anyone can make a difference in the political process if he or she holds true to his or her integrity. But, with one more step, he or she must also remember that in a free democracy politicians are supposed to serve the whim of the people, the voters, the constituents, and not private or special interest groups or companies. This very important lesson and reminder could hardly come at a more welcome time in American History.

Just for fun, though, post your comments below indicating for whom you think Bud Johnson voted.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The current president/Republican, because he didn't sell out. Instead of offering Bud the bribe, he thought better of it and stood by his own integrity in the end. I think Bud would respect that.