Episode #120: JFK
Listen to Episode 120 of the Podcast here while you enjoy the show notes.
SUMMARY - In JFK, Kevin Costner plays Jim Garrison, a New Orleans district attorney who starts to question the legitimacy of the government’s investigation into the assassination of President Kennedy. As he explores the details, his team uncovers many inconsistencies and starts to see potential evidence of a conspiracy and he’s determined to find out the truth.
Screenplay by Oliver Stone and Zachary Sklar; Directed by Oliver Stone; and released on December 20, 1991.
The movie very quickly starts off by showing its intentions. Mixing real historical footage
With realistic looking reenactments or assumed events intercut within.
The story is less about JFK as a president but about the aftermath of the Warren Report's findings
There are some off-putting things early on to the unfamiliar. It wasn't clear for a while if the wig and eyebrows were a bad costume choice or character accurate (it's the latter).
This is a massive cast full of superstars and some of their appearances was distracting.
Still, you don't have enough time to focus on any one thing as this is a rapid fire explosion of information and theories that doesn't let up.
And most of the performances are outstanding, including the deserving nominations that came for Tommy Lee Jones
The mixed media of the film is also a standout. Real assets along with format perfect replicas to match the actors or scenes. With meticulous editing supporting it all.
The timelines can be difficult to follow at times if you don't pay close attention, as it jumps around to different branches and lines of thought
But there are a couple of long monologues that help to tie up the key points at the end, including the climactic courtroom final arguments.
Awards Talk: Oscar winner for Best Editing and Best Cinematography. Nominated for Score, Sound, Screenplay, Director, Supporting Actor (TLJ), and Best Picture. At the BAFTA's, it won Best Sound, Best Editing and was nominated for Screenplay and Supporting Actor (TLJ). Golden Globe winner for Best Director, nominated for Screenplay, Lead Actor, and Picture. Weirdly, it had an MTV nomination for Best movie and it had clips shown in the 'Best hairdos' fake nominees and quotes montage.
TRUE CRIME & POP CULTURE
This week we don't have much pop culture as this was released on the same day as a couple other films. So, the true crime is a minor extension of the assassination of JFK and some pop culture references inspired by the movie.
Here are some of the resources we used:
JFK - Oliver Stone commentary
JFK Movie info
RANKINGS & RATINGS
Nikki 1-5 star scale - 3 out of 5
Jon 0-4 star scale - 3 1/2 out of 4
Would you watch it again? - Yes, but not for a really long time. We understand the underlying faults of the picture but one of us is willing to overlook those since this isn't intended to be a documentary. Jon felt that the potential inaccuracies and blurring of realities in this movie about finding the truth actually proved its own point. Nikki felt like the whole thing was good, but still felt like a class assignment most of the time.
If you want to watch JFK, as of this recording in July 2023, it’s available on Max, Cinemax, Digital Rental, VHS, DVD. Check your local listings.
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Join us next time for Where Sleeping Dogs Lie available on Plex, VHS, DVD