ELVIS & NIXON REVIEWED
“Elvis & Nixon” is a Nixonian comedy that goes in a different direction than a film like “Dick”. While Spacey plays Nixon like a bad Ed Sullivan impersonation, Michael Shannon fights the majesty of Elvis in such a short amount of time. Elvis Presley was a celebrity who learned that his image was garbage, but felt trapped in having created the garbage. While both men were terribly afraid of being alone, Elvis was the only one that acknowledged that weakness. Watching the two titans try to pace around and figure each other is entertaining. But, there’s a terrible psychological underpinning to everything we see onscreen.
Whether it’s Elvis demanding Jerry Schilling’s time or Nixon shaking down his assistants, these men seemingly know that their time is short. While Nixon could live on to fight another day, Elvis wanted to make a statement larger than what his fame had brought him. Did Nixon making Elvis into a federal agent really matter? The simple answer is of course not and anything that would come of it would be PR fluff. What hurts the film is while trying to examine the duology of the men, Nixon becomes an after thought. It’s only naturally so, as Elvis is the focus for Nixon allowing the White House visit. The audience is almost forced into Nixon’s shoes, as he seemingly idolizes Elvis for being able to give him that one thing that he needs…the youth vote.
“Elvis & Nixon” succeeds in this manner by calling attention to the fact that everybody needs something from someone. It’s just what are you going to do with it, when you get it? Fun fact: Cary Elwes co-wrote the film. Way to go, Wesley.
- 2.40:1 1080P transfer
- DTS-HD 5.1 master audio track