Our Nixon

Director: Penny Lane
Year Released: 2013
Rating: 1.5

Lane stitches together 'home movies' of notorious former President Richard Nixon - shot by Dwight Chapin, John Ehrlichman and H.R. Haldeman (a camera buff) - to try to give an 'intimate' portrait of the complicated liar ... except the home movies are largely banal and the exploration of Nixon's 'character' is better explored in other films. The title itself - the "our" being a key word - brings to mind the original American release of Syberberg's Hitler: A Film from Germany (here titled Our Hitler), although comparing Nixon to a mass-murdering Fascist is fundamentally ridiculous. If anything, Oliver Stone's movie about the disgraced President remains (to my mind, at least) the most sympathetic (and nuanced) portrait of the man - seeing him shaking hands with dignitaries and visiting China and France is nice and all, but no more captivating than old-fashioned vacation videos shot by relatives.