Bulworth (1998) is a comedy-drama film co-written, co-produced, and directed by Warren Beatty. Beatty plays Bulworth, a veteran Democrat Senator. A disillusioned Bulworth gets drunk and tells the truth (or, at least, his true feelings) about issues—and finds that people love it.
The New York (NY) Times, on May 15, 2013, reported on President Barack Obama:
“Yet Mr. Obama also expresses exasperation. In private, he has talked longingly of ‘going Bulworth,’ a reference to a little-remembered 1998 Warren Beatty movie about a senator who risked it all to say what he really thought. While Mr. Beatty’s character had neither the power nor the platform of a president, the metaphor highlights Mr. Obama’s desire to be liberated from what he sees as the hindrances on him.”
The terms “Go Bulworth” and “Going Bulworth” and “Full Bulworth” (also a reference to the 1997 film The Full Monty) soon made national news headlines.
Bulworth is a 1998 American comedy-drama film co-written, co-produced, and directed by Warren Beatty. It co-stars Halle Berry, Oliver Platt, Don Cheadle, Paul Sorvino, Jack Warden, and Isaiah Washington. The film follows the title character, California Senator Jay Billington Bulworth (Beatty), as he runs for re-election while trying to avoid a hired assassin.
A veteran Democrat Senator, Bulworth is losing his bid for re-election to a fiery young populist. Bulworth’s socialist dogma, formed in the 1960s and 1970s, has lost favor with voters, so he has conceded to less liberal politics and to accepting donations from unions and corporations. In addition, though he and his wife have been having affairs openly for years, they must still present a happy facade in the interest of maintaining a good public image.
Tired of politics and his life in general and planning to commit suicide, Bulworth negotiates a $10 million life insurance policy with his daughter as its beneficiary in exchange for a favorable vote from the insurance industry. Knowing that a suicide will negate his daughter’s inheritance, he contracts to have himself assassinated within two days’ time.
Turning up in California for his campaign extremely drunk, Bulworth begins speaking his mind freely at public events and in the presence of the C-SPAN film crew following his campaign. After ending up in a night club and smoking marijuana, he even starts rapping in public. His frank, potentially offensive remarks make him an instant media darling and re-energize his campaign.
New York (NY) Times
Onset of Woes Casts Pall Over Obama’s Policy Aspirations
By PETER BAKER
Published: May 15, 2013
Yet Mr. Obama also expresses exasperation. In private, he has talked longingly of “going Bulworth,” a reference to a little-remembered 1998 Warren Beatty movie about a senator who risked it all to say what he really thought. While Mr. Beatty’s character had neither the power nor the platform of a president, the metaphor highlights Mr. Obama’s desire to be liberated from what he sees as the hindrances on him.
“Probably every president says that from time to time,” said David Axelrod, another longtime adviser who has heard Mr. Obama’s movie-inspired aspiration. “It’s probably cathartic just to say it. But the reality is that while you want to be truthful, you want to be straightforward, you also want to be practical about whatever you’re saying.”
The Huffington Post
Obama Speaks Of ‘Going Bulworth’ In Second Term
By Luke Johnson
Posted: 05/16/2013 9:06 am EDT | Updated: 05/16/2013 1:27 pm EDT
The New York Times reported that President Barack Obama has spoken privately of “going Bulworth,” a reference to the 1998 Warren Beatty movie about a California Senate candidate who becomes unusually honest after having run as a centrist Democrat.
“Probably every president says that from time to time,” Obama adviser David Axelrod told the Times. “It’s probably cathartic just to say it. But the reality is that while you want to be truthful, you want to be straightforward, you also want to be practical about whatever you’re saying.”
Posted on May 17, 2013 by Scott Johnson in Barack Obama, Hollywood, Obamacare
The Bulworth identity
There is a reason Bulworth is little remembered. It falls into a long line of lame liberal satire. But Baker’s report is really interesting. One wishes Baker’s curiosity weren’t so constrained. Dig a little deeper, man! What deep truths is Obama longing to share with the American people?
He’s already told us he prefers “single-payer or Canadian way,” to take the Bulworthian example above. He hasn’t gone so far as to give a shout out to “that dirty word – SOCIALISM,” but we can connect the dots from Obamacare to the “single-payer or the Canadian” way by ourselves. From the glories of the Canadian way (as Obama sees them) to “SOCIALISM” only requires a little generalization from a big example.
Perhaps in the Bulworth mode Obama would tell us what fools we were to believe his fake opposition to gay marriage, or his fake support for Israel. He would tell us friendship with Bill Ayers and his support for late term abortion/infanticide.
Jay Mueller · Top Commenter · University of Chicago
Fascinating. Obama has already said pretty clearly what he thinks of us bitter-clingers. Imagine what he’s holding back? Go for it, Mr. President! Go full Bulworth on us! Try it for a week, anyway! 50.5% of the public still hasn’t quite gotten the message.
May 17 at 1:00pm
Washington (DC) Post
By Katrina vanden Heuvel,May 21, 2013
The New York Times reported last week that President Obama fantasizes with aides about “going Bulworth.”
For those who don’t remember, Bulworth is a brilliant 1998 film by Warren Beatty, depicting a corrupted and suicidal liberal senator from California who is facing a primary challenge while dealing with financial ruin. Unable to sleep or eat, Bulworth suddenly busts out before an African American congregation in a black church in South Central Los Angeles and begins rapping the unspeakable truths about our politics. The Times report has led commentators to speculate on what the president might say if he went “Bulworth.” What’s revealing, however, is how much could be taken directly from the movie itself.
As Republicans and the press hyperventilate about inflated scandals, the president could simply “go Bulworth” by borrowing directly from the movie to talk about what the actual scandals are: ...
Fox News Insider
‘Just Tell Us What Happened, Mr. President’
Bill O’Reilly’s Talking Points Memo: ‘Let’s go Bulworth’ on Obama admin controversies.
by Fox News InsiderFox News Insider // May 21 2013 // 8:37pm
As seen on The O’Reilly Factor The O’Reilly Factor
Ace of Spades HQ
June 25, 2013
Full Bullworth: Obama Set to Announce Killing the Keystone Pipeline, Jacking Up Electricity Rates
@johnekdahl notes the “Full Bullworth” promise—Obama told a New York Times reporter a month or so ago that he sometimes wished he could just go “Full Bullworth” and tell the American people How It Really Is.
Well, this isn’t the Full Bullworth, but it could be called the Modified Limited Hangout Bullworth.
First, killing Keystone. And I do mean killing.
New York City • Government/Law/Politics/Military • Tuesday, June 25, 2013 • Permalink