MovieChat Forums > Bulworth (1998) Discussion > Hilarious but socialist propaganda

Hilarious but socialist propaganda


This movie was hilarious; nonetheless, the juvenile socialist propaganda (Business is bad! Profit is evil! Let's subjugate our minds and our lives to government and society!) was all too transparent.

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So what? It hits the nail right on the head and will send the message to the m,asses that governments are funded by huge tycoons and companys and are only profit motivated. not everyone knows the facts which are brought to attention in this movie, and I hiope movies like this are continually made until people actually start to listen and learn that voting is something every one should do.

I hope a real Bulworth exists out there, someone who will follow on the ideals of Kennedy and rid the planet of evil corporations.

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Kennedy may have had somewhat of a "conscience" (for lack of a better term), but he was no hero by any regards.

"Not as chewy as roastbeef, not as boring as chicken"

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If Kennedy wasn't a hero, who on earth was? If Dubya was in office during the Cuban Missile Crisis, we would be ash.

My definition of a free society is a society where it is safe to be unpopular.
Adlai E. Stevenson

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"If Dubya was in office during the Cuban Missile Crisis, we would be ash."

And so would so many innocent Cubans.

"Not as chewy as roastbeef, not as boring as chicken"

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That's what I meant by "we" As in we, the people of this world. I don't divide people up by ethnicity or nationality. Sorry to sound defensive, but its a point worth making.

My definition of a free society is a society where it is safe to be unpopular.
Adlai E. Stevenson

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Guess you forgot about the Bay of Pigs invasion.

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Guess you forgot about the Bay of Pigs invasion.

Guess you forgot that Kennedy had nothing to do with that plan. He even refused to send in air cover or commit the navy to it. The CIA and their mafioso buddies went ahead with it anyway, which is why Kennedy vowed to "smash the CIA into a thousand pieces".

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Bernie.

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"For heroism the rescue of 3 men following the ramming and sinking of his motor torpedo boat while attempting a torpedo attack on a Japanese destroyer in the Solomon Islands area on the night of Aug 1-2, 1943. Lt. KENNEDY, Capt. of the boat, directed the rescue of the crew and personally rescued 3 men, one of whom was seriously injured. During the following 6 days, he succeeded in getting his crew ashore, and after swimming many hours attempting to secure aid and food, finally effected the rescue of the men. His courage, endurance and excellent leadership contributed to the saving of several lives and was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service."

you wanna rethink that remark about kennedy being no hero by any regards? do some research!

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"I hope a real Bulworth exists out there"

He does. In 2000 the whiny Democrats blamed him for Gore's incompetence, and in 2004 they did everything they could to keep him off the ballot.

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Hell yeah, NADER 2008

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He did, Paul Wellstone, too bad he was Bullworthed in a 'plane crash'.

----

Republican: Someone who watches you drown while describing the water.

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"If they think communism is the wave of the future; let them come to Berlin!" - John F. Kennedy

Individualism is a concept which the advocates of most political systems try desperately to avoid. They'd prefer that political contests, debates and symposia were limited to answering loaded questions such as, 'Which type of powerful government should we have?', 'How much intrusive government should we have?' and, 'Which type of control freaks are best suited to run your life?' ... They often get upset, even hysterical, if you point out, for example, that socialism, fascism, communism and mixed-economy welfare-states have a lot in common. They carry on and on as if non-essentials such as style(!) or WHAT anybody sacrifices individual rights in the name of, the master race, the proletariat, the society, the common good, the majority, the country, the fatherland, the motherland the brother-in-law-land, the revered leader or savior or god or whatever, is a big freakin' deal, especially as only in their particular fantasies do they imagine everyone, the enforcers and even their victims, acting forever polite and cooperative in the sacrifice-extracting rituals (as have many fledgling and would-be dictators, including the bloody Pol Pot at first).

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I hope a real Bulworth exists out there, someone who will follow on the ideals of Kennedy and rid the planet of evil corporations.


John Kennedy?

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You know, kmw, I'm wide open to debate on the heavy-handedness of the movie's message(s), but on the other hand, I will say this -- you better be on crack to believe big business would ever display even a shred of social conscience without being forced to do so.

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Excuse me, maybe you missed the point of the film. Big business is bad! That IS the point of the film. It's completely unbiased because Warren Beatty is a true progressive with no ties to either corporate party (as is evident by his interesting choice at making Bulworth a Dem).

Did you hear the TRUE fact that Bulworth states: with insurance companies, it costs the American government over 25 cents per dollar on medical work, but if the government would do it themselves it would cost taxpayers 3 cents per dollar! Wanna lower taxes? Get rid of corporations or at least make them start paying their fair share which, if you do your research, they have not done since Jimmy Carter.

"Let's subjugate our minds and lives to government"? What? The point of the film is that our government is ridiculous and terribly run!

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Why is it that in America if anything has a left-wing point of view it gets labelled as 'left-wing/socialist/liberal propoganda'? Do people not have any faith in audiences to have a mind of their own? So what if a movie makes its point of view perfectly blunt and obvious. That's a good thing. If I'm exchanging opinions with someone I want to know what their opinion is so I can evaluate it against my own. It's the same with films. I'd rather a film came out and said what it had to say so I can make up my own mind whether I agree or disagree. Better than than pussy-footing about and playing everything safe so no-one gets offended.

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I never thought of it that way, but what's going on now is definitely not working properly in terms of cost. I'm for whatever would work better.

There's got to be a better way to do this. I have my doubts ANY system will work effectively with the corruption and mis-management in America. That definitely includes the healthcare providers.

Only faith I still have is that the technology will continue to improve and hopefully force qualitative changes no matter what.

Bottom line: We'd all probably be better off if we ate right and exercised more.



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Let me get this straight, Charles -- you have no objection whatsoever to your government sending citizens off to fight and die, but feel it's a "slap in the face of [y]our Founders" for them to meddle in the 'service industry' of keeping citizens alive and well?


You are completely f**king insane. Just thought you'd want to know...

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"I don't wanna hear the old reply of "The Constitution is 200 years old...get with the times"...because thats just sickening."

The Constitution is over 200 years old, get with the times. Would your funding fathers written the constitution differently today? The american health care system is affordable for those with enough money. If there is NO government intervention, than there is no health care for the poor and you will get a health care that only think profit profit profit.

As a norwegian I happily pay my taxes knowing that if I brake a leg or have to have a operation the government is there for me no matter how much money I have and pays the operation for me. It may be a bit slower, but it is free.


"Percy, it's green"

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"The Constitution is over 200 years old, get with the times. Would your funding fathers written the constitution differently today?"

Yes, I believe that they would have included provisions explicitly forbidding democracy, socialism, communism, fascism, and other forms of tyranny that have reared their ugly heads since 1789. (Our Constitution sets our country up as a constitutional republic, not a democracy.)

Most of the Founding Fathers didn't believe in 1788 that a Bill of Rights was necessary, believing that those rights were understood. Well, in their day, they were. It has taken the rise of liberalism to put those, and other rights, in doubt of survival. (Such as the right not to be forced into a govt-run health care system, after the failure of the Social Security system; Why can't a health care system of, say, half the size in this large country be large enough for the liberals? Why must it include the conservatives also?)

I don't know about Norway, but I have heard of people in the UK waiting three years for a necessary surgery and they are dead in one year for the lack of that surgery.

I hope you don't have to wait like that in your country.

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Let me guess your an insurance agent. If not, and you truly believe that, just where are you getting your facts, because they are not true. The free market has took its course and in 2002 left more than 43 million people in the U.S. without health insurance and 18,000 every year dead (institute of Medicine 2004). I do agree with you that socialized medicine is not the answer even thought the U. S. is the only industrialized nation in the world that does not have it. The insurance companys however need to be regulated I don't care if it againts your principles or whatever you tell yourself if the company don't like being regulated they can pick up and move believe me everybody is better off without them. One more thing our education system is a socialist ran program all ready don't know if you knew that.

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The rationale behind the ethic of socialism has to do with the fundamental bias of meritocracy, both in its capacities to favor pedigree and innate, genetic advantages enabling one person to accrue more capital whilst doing less work than the other. A disciple of socialism judges the urgencies of everyone's needs unfettered by economic assessments of the individual, looking instead more greatly upon the implications those unfulfilled needs would have on the person. Socialism is, at its heart, a system of altruism, and it's a pity that such tyrants as Stalin would abuse and pervert it to their own ends, and it's an even greater one that politicians who benefit financially from large corporations who want the government off their backs so that they can put dangerous products on the market, pollute the environment, etc. will use post-hocs regarding the aforementioned tyrants in order to make socialism anathema to the public.

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Brilliantly well-put, fritzerbuster, though I believe that governmental preferences are much like religion: once you've been brought up one way or another, you'll never change. Or at the very least it's very difficult to induce change in the person. I've got a question though, do the elections have a socialist party? I've seen green, libertarian, communist, but no socialist. Do the liberal ideas simply come too close to socialism that they are virtually the same? I like how they put in the other parties, as if a majority will ever vote for them in this bipartisan hell. But that's beside the point =)

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There is a socialist party, but they've remained on the fringes, even by third-party standards. You can visit their website at sp-usa.org.

And with your "bipartisan hell" remark, you've brought up another very good point, and that's the issue of maximizing the candidate field. Perhaps vital to the future efficacy of our democratic process more than anything else will be this. To accommodate a greater plurality of parties, I've been in favor for quite some time of what is called "instant-runoff voting," and in particular of the method available to carry out such a process, the "ranked voting" system. Fundamentally, what this alternative method would entail would be ranking the candidates by number rather than selecting just one person as your vote. Tabulation would be carried out several times, each time eliminating one of the candidates. The first round of counting would base its results on everyone's first choice, whereupon when the candidate who receives the fewest votes loses, those who had voted for him/her will now be counted in the next round as their next choices. The winnowing process would continue in this way until the winner is left, and in that way, you could vote for the person you really want without the fear of splitting the electorate for someone you can at least tolerate and ending up with another person you absolutely loathe.

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Some Christmas morning wit (hooray for presents!): the difference between America's democracry and communism/dictatorship is one. Or Democracy - Communism = 1. Referring to the number of choices in president, of course. I see how that would work, and it sounds good, but how does one instigate change in modern America? They have now become complacent. I'd rather just not bother and move back to Europe, or maybe try out Asia for a bit...

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Unfortunately there really is no hope for third parties unless a large portion of Americans suddenly stand up and say NO to the two party system. Many people don't realize that there was campaign reform of sorts during the last election which effectively cut out third party candidates. It's little known that the Republican and Democratic parties, being the most well-known and financed, run the campaign and debates processes and have done so for years. That's how they were able to 1)Keep third party candidates out of the debates to make it seem like Kerry and Bush were the only viable options, and 2)The Democratic party actually lobbied (successfully) to have third party candidates removed from ballots in a number states(Such as the dump I currently live in). Their reason being is that they want to present themselves as the only viable 'left/liberal' party and they claim that third parties steal the votes from the Dem nominee thereby helping the Republicans to win. If things continue our only hope is to write in the nominee of your choice and hope others do also.

Like a street gang... but with an analysis

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o my god, do americans know anythink about politics???

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to the foreigner, well he right, more than likely many of us just have been told that socilasim is bad, maybe it tis, maybe it isn't but many of us, still refuse to open our minds, not literally embrace it, but just open our minds to it and to other things. And to fringedweller, while the demos did fight to keep a third party candidate off the ballot the thing was it was only ralph nader the other ones like michael bartdanik (spelling) and one other guy was one the ballot whne I voted so, though that was vanilla of us to do, it's clear that ralph really atin't just working for himself or his party

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Why is it that in America if anything has a left-wing point of view it gets labelled as 'left-wing/socialist/liberal propoganda'?
The same reason why it is that in America if anything that has a right-wing point of view, it gets labelled as 'right-wing/fascist/conservative propaganda'. The reactionary extremists on both sides have always had a problem tolerating opposing points of view.

Having said that, I hardly think Bulworth qualifies as 'propaganda'. It's more of a character study of a politician who has a crisic of conscience and starts speaking his actual beliefs rather than watering them down to make them more palatable to the voters. That he is liberal who shifts further to the left is, for me, irrelevant other than it gave Warren Beatty a chance to put his own personal politics on film. If the film had shown Bulworth implementing his far-left policies and America was shown as turning into a happy paradise with rivers of chocolate and gumdrop smiles because of the liberal reform, then I would buy the argument that the film is propaganda.

In short, I didn't feel that I had to personally agree with Bulworth in order to enjoy the movie.

UPDATE: However, I would like to add that a movie in which a conservative senator has a crisis of conscience and moves further to the right will never been made by Hollywood unless he is depicted as some cartoon villain.

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Right on the money mustard monkey! Considering Bulworth was meant for a mass audience, as it had a huge budget, the points Beatty makes are perfectly obvious as they should be, especially in these times. And Beatty had the guts to say it indeed, without pussy-footing. Something which can't be said for the makers of the Manchurian Candidate-remake.

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There's a reason for that. Business is bad. Profit is evil. Our minds and our lives are subjugated to government and society.

Let me hear that dirty word:

SOCIALISM!

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From an outsider (I am a foreigner) you guys make me laugh. There was nothing socialist in this movie, and none of you could judge that because you have never seen, heard or met socialism in your own country. You only know the fear of it, which is US no. 1 problem. Fear for everything. Just look at the nr. of conspiracy movies that are released by your own people in your own country about your own state of affairs.

Bulworth never even touched the surface of socialism. It was one of the most impressive attempts to make America's problems (judged by a foreigner) visable. And it was not hilarious at all. It was an incredible masterpiece that addressed hundreds of different issues. One of them was the power of money, which is not socialism, but one of the bigger issues in your country. If you have money you can be free of persecution, or at least conviction, and yes. If you have money you can buy your way to everything, including politics.

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However, I would like to add that a movie in which a conservative senator has a crisis of conscience and moves further to the right will never been made by Hollywood unless he is depicted as some cartoon villain.


Would a move right be called by anyone a "crisis of conscience?" I understand the self-defined merit of conservatism as the denouncement of silly ideals and the acception of the reality that if you want something you've got to take it, and let everyone else worry about themselves. Maybe a "crisis of realization."

In any case, the scene where all the drug addicts just "suck it up" and "get jobs" should be very affecting. Maybe it could be a musical.

(edited for typo)

Now if you should want to call me, use this number. This other one is the old number.

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The reason socialism/communism will never work is because everyone wants to be rich. Some just have more ambition than others. Sure the starting line isn't the same for everyone, and the road may be on an incline for some, but if you really put your mind to it you can get to the finish line in this country. Others just complain because they don't feel like running.

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you can't get to the finish line in this country unless you ride in a limosene... the only reason that socialism hasn't been a threat to the power elite (since the 1920s) is because the middle class was created as a buffer zone between the rich and the poor. As long as you have a tv and air conditioner to come home to everyday, more than likely you won't try to change this society and risk your minimal amount of comfort, even if it would make things better for your children or even grandchilden. However, the elites who mingle in the apex of the corporate-political-military iron triangle better be cautious, as the middle class is slipping away due to downsizing and outsourcing and it is becoming harder for the poor to reach the middle class because of 25 years of "conservative" cuts to social programs, whose funds become tax breaks for the super wealthy and corporations.

The message in this movie (that hits the nail on the coffin) is that as long as politicians can be funded by private interests they will be looking out for Big Business and the rich, rather than the average individual. Moreover, the same greedy fiends who finance politicans also finance media outlets (who, themselves are big corporations). Since most of the general public receives their information from the corporate media, they won't have the slightest notion that an elite few control the government, instead of "we the people."

Oh, and to reply to Klhennie... the american ideal of "rags to riches" is just a myth perpetuated by the elite so that we accept the fact that the richest 1% of the populations controls almost 50% of the nation's wealth, because one day we could be rich too. But unless you were blessed with athletic talent (even many who are die or are jailed) or win the lottery you aren't climbing today's social ladder if you are born on the lower rungs. In other words, poor people don't have an incline, they have a precipice; while those born rich don't have to "walk at all." And I also disagree with your philosophy of human nature. If you know anything about history you would know that people weren't greedy before capitalism naturally emerged from the chaotic dissipation of feudalism. I think that the average person would rather cooperate with others to make the world a better place for everyone, instead of compete against others to make life better for themself.

In conclusion, the resources of this world (land, rivers, minerals, etc.) should belong to all of us, and not to an elite few who make essential resources scarce so that the rest of us have to compete for them, which naturally divides us (nationalism,racism,sexism,etc.) As long as we are fighting each other, we can't come together and overthrow capitalism, which has been a crime against humanity.

Don't Agonize, Organize!

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Yeah, and ignore the fact that the result of socialism/communism killed over a 100 million people in the 20th century alone!

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"The reason socialism/communism will never work is because everyone wants to be rich. Some just have more ambition than others. Sure the starting line isn't the same for everyone, and the road may be on an incline for some, but if you really put your mind to it you can get to the finish line in this country. Others just complain because they don't feel like running."

Sure it can. After a country goes through a long war, a government-run, state-collective society such as socialism or communism would definitely be the best way to start.


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ha ha

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[deleted]

Klhennie on Sat Jul 9 2005 16:03:01
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The reason socialism/communism will never work is because everyone wants to be rich. Some just have more ambition than others. Sure the starting line isn't the same for everyone, and the road may be on an incline for some, but if you really put your mind to it you can get to the finish line in this country. Others just complain because they don't feel like running.
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God, Klhennie, did you see a few too many of those bullsh*t "Morning In America" spots in '84? Sounds like you and Lyn Nofzinger ought to get together for a fun evening of whatever it is that rich, white, people with no souls do... I think the trend of the day is to blame poor, disadvantaged people for their inability to overcome extreme obstacles that people like you put in their way.

Two quick definitions...straight from the dictionary:

lib·er·al [líbbərəl, líbbrəl]
adj
1. broad-minded: tolerant of different views and standards of behavior in others
2. politics progressive politically or socially: favoring gradual reform, especially political reforms that extend democracy, distribute wealth more evenly, and protect the personal freedom of the individual
3. generous: generous with money, time, or some other asset
My great-aunt was liberal in her bequests.


con·ser·va·tive [kən súrvətiv]
adj
1. reluctant to accept change: in favor of preserving the status quo and traditional values and customs, and against abrupt change.


Call me crazy, but I think the choice is clear.

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I don't think they were refering to Ted Kennedy, rather JFK and RFK...

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socialist propaganda ?

you didn't get the movie and that's why all I gotta say to you is.. to put it in Senators Bulworth words : " socialist (or was is socialisme?) is the dirty word they use in Canada"

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I believe to be a successful country you need both. if the scale leans to far socialist their is just as much danger as when it swings to far capitalist. And i must say that a majority on both sides are in agreement that urban and lower class minorities are responsible for most violent crimes and yet we refuse to spend money to put in place programs that will correct this.The movie really deals with this. and so dont be told that bogus story of Either/ Or, that is crazy extremists on both sides being irrational.

Good movie, its one of only 5 or so that gets better every time i see it.

PS- Stop using the word propaganda, you make yourself sound like a dumb McCarthy-esque 50's nut. Its far to overused and has NO PLACE IN CONTEMPORARY POLITICS AND QUIT BEING SO WORRIED AND DEFENSE ABOUT A MOVIE.

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Just posted my opinion on this great movie in the user comments:

Bulworth may have been filmed in the MTV quick edit way that some find unfitting for an Oscar worthy production but, aesthetics aside, its contents are right on the mark.

Anyone who claims Beatty's/Bulworth's analysis and solutions to political problems are dated, must be living under a rock. As we speak, Bulworth's claims that "white people have more in common with black people than with rich people" are proven to be completely accurate as we look at the devastating aftermath of hurricane Katrina. Though New Orleans' population consists largely of blacks and ethnic minorities, those who were left behind had ONE common denominator: they are infirm either economically or physically i.e. they are POOR or HEALTH CHALLENGED. The TV-images show poor white people among the many poor blacks. Poverty is what sets them both back. Bulworth dated? You must be living in a socio-economically comfortable cocoon.

If anything, Beatty proved with this, both hilarious as bluntly accurate, brilliant movie to be a visionary. He puts his finger on where it hurts most: the complete corruption of the system, the handclapping, backslapping deals between interest groups and politicians, turning the last group into mouthpieces for selfish agendas. The hypocrisy behind the photo ops (look at Bush yesterday on the news posing with hurricane victims), the empty rhetoric, the feigning to be there for the people, when really they're only there for themselves.

People who cannot come up with more than "this is socialist rethoric/propaganda" comments are obviously deaf, dumb and blind to the realities of (modern day) politics and therefore deserve to be duped by the leaders they so willingly, blindly, wish to trust, believe and follow.
It really is true folks: "Tax payers, tax payers, take it in the rear".
Wake up and smell the dung, for goodness sake!

Now for the movie itself. Some have commented that Beatty, as an affluent, middle-aged (by now senior citizen) WHITE man, cannot possibly understand what "ordinary people" go through. Think again. Beatty has been in politics for the Democrats for decades. He is one of the very few rich (DEMOCRATIC) guys who actually gives a damn about the less privileged of our society. Being rich does not equate being unable to educate oneself, nor does being white. Beatty’s always had many contacts and friends in the black community with whom he exchanged ideas and concerns.

I’m colored and found nothing about the movie stereotypical or racially offensive AT ALL. Those who do, including blacks, are missing the larger picture this movie is trying to paint.
Bulworth is not intended as a "white Messiah" for the "stereotypical hoodlum blacks". He is a metaphore and as a wake-up call, he NEEDS to be an extreme.
The movie would not have worked if Bulworth had been a black senator, a young senator, or if Bulworth had met a white single mother Starbuck's employee.
When you want to reach people, you have to wake them up, you have to make them sit up, take notice, think, and start discussing what they have just seen.
THAT's exactly what this movie in THIS chosen format, with these characters, does. It completely serves its purpose.
Unfortunately those who oppose the movie are even unaware that their criticism is a credit to this movie, for it apparently made them think (even if they arrive at mixed up, not understanding conclusions).

Bulworth is not perfect, but its imperfections are easily forgiven. The movie keeps moving without a dull moment in it. Beatty is hilarious and totally enjoying his part (and his freedom?) addressing everything that’s wrong in this sick society with a zeal and energy that many guys half his age must envy. I love the fact that this is the first movie in which Warren dares to look his age. He has never been afraid to ridicule himself in past movies. Anybody who’s into Beatty knows that horseface Carly Simon's "You're so vain" most definitely is NOT about him.
The rest of the cast is simply fantastic, too. Oliver Platt is rib-crackingly funny as the concerned, confused and finally mentally broken down campaign manager Murphy. He elevates the term "spin-doctor" to complete new heights!
Joshua Malina (campaign aid Feldman) is almost as funny. Platt and Malina have some hilarious scenes together. Old Beatty favourite, veteran actor, Jack Warden is solid as ever.
Halle Berry's character could have used a bit more humor, but she does a good job. Yes, it is a bit of a stretch that the gorgeous Nina would fall for the "used to be gorgeous too, but not so much anymore" aging Bulworth, but to state that without looking deeper into how she comes to her choice, is to ignore a significant part of the movie.
At first she doesn't know what to make of this, seemingly confused, man. But as she follows him, his actions, his words, his attitude, she discovers that he is sincere. That combined with him being in a position in which he could actually make a much needed difference in society, makes her "change her mind" and fall for him. It's not like this young girl Nina has some geriatric preferences in the romantic department!
Ariyan A. Johnson and Michele Morgan are amusing as the two enthusiastic new Bulworth "VOOOOOOLUNTEEEEEEEEEEEEERS".
Paul Sorvino, Richard Sarafian, Don Cheadle are all solid. Yes, the turnaround of L.D. in the end is too quick in the making, but the alternative would be a (much) longer movie, so that's one of the very few weaknesses in the script.
Last comments:
- NO, Bulworth does not "only speak in rap" once he's started rapping.
- NO, Bulworth is not some aging actor's ego trip. It’s a wake-up call to America.
- Never knew a 60 plus year old white guy could look so hilariously cute in hip hop gear.
- Let the spirit take hold of you, and let it lead you to take action, now that Bulworth has been silenced.......

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