mr. smith goes to washington

August 21, 2008

“dad used to say the only causes worth fighting for were the lost causes.”

i just love jimmy stewart. i’ve said it before on here, but i just feel safe when i see him on screen (even if he looks as young as he does in this one). his presence just seems to calm me down, i know that i’m in good hands and if nothing else i’m gonna at least see a good performance. and he delivers in this film as well.

theres something refreshing about seeing a film about politics without an outright partisan political agenda. the film is not about trying to fight for oil or over abortion, he’s fighting for a boys camp. something that is (or seems like to me) a non partisan issue. as far as i can remember nobody’s political affiliation is mentioned, and jimmy stewart represents an unnamed state. he’s fighting against the idea of corruption. it’s not a political critique, but a social one. how much will we give up for money? for recognition? for power?

i was waiting the entire film for jimmy stewarts final speech in the senate. i don’t know if i’d be that lenient with most films when they get to their proselytizing moment, but since this film didn’t tow any party lines and it was jimmy stewart doing the preaching, i was all for it (and very excited). having seen the film on the big screen i think adds something to the thrill of the speech. you feel as though you’re sitting on the senate floor with him, getting hit in the face with the sweat flipping off his brow.

i loved the fact that jimmy stewart’s character gets so excited about seeing the capital. us, as modern viewers, are just as jaded as the people who live in and work in washington, and find his child like awe at the capital building kind of funny. but i love that the film doesn’t try to play it off as being naive, but rather fully appreciating the history of the country. stewart’s character truly loves just being in the presence of history, were in our modern minds we’d rather be in the presence of celebrity.

i’m not sure this is a film that could be made today. i think if someone did remake it, they would certainly add a lot of their own political agenda to the film, and it would ruin the spirit of it. this film is all about pride in our system, our country, and our fellow man.


2 Responses to “mr. smith goes to washington”

  1. Nan Says:

    I love Jimmy, too. I feel the same way when I see him in certain movies-comforted. Very well written and thoughtful blog.

  2. johnheberle Says:

    jimmy is the best.

    thanks a lot for reading nan!

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