January 16, 2008

Hillary as Tracy Flick — the video.

33 comments:

Middle Class Guy said...

Cute. Very cute.

Pogo said...

Looks like the Obama campaign needs to rent the movie to see what happens next.

Politics is less hollywood for ugly people than it is high school for middle-aged narcissists.

titustiff said...

I loved that movie and I loved Tracy Flick. Rheese has had some work done on her mug since that movie.

hdhouse said...

The republican answer was just posted to youtube.

see it here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ZvCxFkJayg

Mortimer Brezny said...

Flick does become an aide to a Republican. But that was supposed to be a subtle jab. The implication is that the Republican Party rewards evil.

hdhouse said...

Mortimer Brezny said...
"The implication is that the Republican Party rewards evil."

and your point is...?

John Stodder said...

Flick does become an aide to a Republican. But that was supposed to be a subtle jab. The implication is that the Republican Party rewards evil.

Flick becomes an aide to a Republican because she's from Nebraska.

"Election" is one of my favorite movies because it examines the deranged and dangerous narcissism of most politicians in such a hilarious way. I don't think it's partisan. However, at the time the movie came out, most took Tracy's persona as, in part, a satirical poke at Hillary. Who else on the political landscape in the past 10 years has appeared so convinced of the self-evident rightness of their leadership?

Methadras said...

Election is one of my all time favorites and not just because Ms. Witherspoon is so damned cute, but because it illustrates how even a tiny, unknown highschool in the middle of nowhere holding elections can foul and corrupt not only it's participants, but even it's bystanders. Great, great movie.

Revenant said...

Who else on the political landscape in the past 10 years has appeared so convinced of the self-evident rightness of their leadership?

Well, Roger Ebert compared her to Elizabeth Dole, if I recall correctly.

I thought it was interesting how many reviewers saw the character of Tracy Flick as villainous. While she has that Hillary-esque aura of entitlement, she actually IS the best-qualified candidate -- and it is apparent that underneath it all is an emotionally abused girl with no friends who just wants to be liked by other people.

The actual "bad guy" of the movie is Matthew Broderick's character.

LarsPorsena said...

Yep Rev,
The PC Broderick character did a Chicago style ballot count.
But, as a Rethuglican , she obviously deserved to be cheated.

John Stodder said...

Elizabeth Dole! Except Dole's whole act was honey-voiced charm. Flick had a naked lust for power.

And while Broderick does things he shouldn't, the most villanous act in the movie was Flick's destruction of her opponent's posters. Broderick knows she did it even though he can't prove it, which makes him feel justified in trying to impede the rise of such an unscrupulous, power-mad being. (He also, mistakenly perhaps, blames Flick for seducing his idiot best friend and costing him his job and family.)

Revenant said...

And while Broderick does things he shouldn't, the most villanous act in the movie was Flick's destruction of her opponent's posters.

Huh? Not even *close*.

Two acts that were obviously more villainous were (a) Broderick rigging the vote count and (b) Broderick's friend seducing an emotionally vulnerable high school student. Note that Tracy was the victim in both cases. Another obvious act of wrongdoing, far more significant than the tearing down of posters, was Broderick cheating on his wife.

Broderick knows she did it even though he can't prove it, which makes him feel justified in trying to impede the rise of such an unscrupulous, power-mad being.

You've got the timeline wrong. Broderick's character had been actively trying to prevent Flick from winning since the beginning, both because he blamed her for his friend's firing and because she was the object of his own desire to cheat on his wife.

Calling Tracy "unscrupulous" and "power-mad" is wrong. She has a sense of entitlement, that is true, but the only unscrupulous action she takes is to tear down the posters -- and that wasn't a premeditated act. It is worth considering that her view of herself as the clearly best choice isn't particularly a matter of ego. She really IS the best-qualified candidate -- she has the experience, brains, motivation, etc. Her opponents are a half-wit jock who doesn't even want the job, and a girl running purely for revenge. Tracy's frustration stems from the fact that despite being the best qualified, and despite having worked for this for years, she's losing to a rich jock just because he's more popular than she is. I think that is entirely understandable frustration. That's why she tears down the posters -- not because she is "unscrupulous" or "power-mad", but because she is a teenage girl upset at how unfair the world is.

The unscrupulous character in the movie is Broderick; for all his talk of morals, he never displays any.

JohnTaylor88 said...

The actual "bad guy" of the movie is Matthew Broderick's character.

No. The actual bad guy is Tracy Flick. You are focusing on acts. But Ms. Flick is prideful, jealous, and arrogant, not to mention lustful. Her treatment of the only pure person in the film, the holy jock, is shameful. Not to mention she should have been disqualified from the election for tearing down those posters. She did not deserve to win and she was not a victim and she was not the protagonist or a good person. She was evil. And she was rewarded.

It was clear from her answer in class that she had no coherent understanding of the difference between ethics and morals.

Revenant said...

But Ms. Flick is prideful, jealous, and arrogant, not to mention lustful.

How is she "lustful"? You've obviously got her confused with Broderick's character and his buddy. The movie (and, for that matter, the book) clearly portray her as vulnerable to the attentions of an older authority figure because she has no father in her life. Humbert Humbert rationalizations aside it is clear that the moral culpability for her affair with her teacher lies with the teacher himself.

Her treatment of the only pure person in the film, the holy jock, is shameful.

She was angry at him for getting into the election because she thought someone had put him up to it. Someone HAD put him up to it -- Broderick's character.

She was evil. And she was rewarded.

Calling her evil is ridiculous. Broderick's character tried to screw over a hard-working teenager as a way of dealing with his own poorly-suppressed lust for her. He betrays his marriage, his code of ethics and morals, and his students. If anything in the movie qualifies as "evil", that does. Tracy does exactly *one* wrong thing in the entire film -- tearing down the posters -- and that is clearly presented as a crime of passion, rather than a part of a deliberate plan.

You're right that the Paul character is presented as morally pure, but you're ignoring the fact that the person who manipulates him into doing things he doesn't want to do -- the person who treats him "shamefully", as you would put it -- is, once again, Broderick's character, who pushes the poor half-wit into running against Tracy purely because of his personal hatred of the girl.

reader_iam said...

I somehow missed this movie. (I also didn't look at this video or this comments thread until just now.)

Upon leaving this thread, I'm heading to Netflix.

Thanks, guys!

JohnTaylor88 said...

The movie (and, for that matter, the book) clearly portray her as vulnerable to the attentions of an older authority figure because she has no father in her life.

In other words, she was lustful.

Tracy does exactly *one* wrong thing in the entire film -- tearing down the posters -- and that is clearly presented as a crime of passion, rather than a part of a deliberate plan.

One act. But her pride, jealousy, wrath, and greed are evident. She has no emotional control because she is overcome with pride, jealousy, wrath, and greed. It culminates in that one act.

She was angry at him for getting into the election because she thought someone had put him up to it.

You mean she was jealous, prideful, self-entitled, and paranoid. How sympathetic.

You're right that the Paul character is presented as morally pure

No, he is morally pure. He deserved to win the election and if the rules had been applied fairly he would have won the election. The point is that evil people like Tracy Flick can get away with their evil while morally pure people like Paul get screwed over because the rules are broken.

The tragedy of the narrative is that Broderick's unethical maneuever did not work. Sometimes you have to break the rules to ensure that justice is done.

PatCA said...

I also loved the movie, and Hillary's kinship with Tracy is undeniable. I also loved Alexander Payne's Citizen Ruth, which also fits in well to this election season.

Revenant said...

In other words, she was lustful.

How on Earth do you equate "young girl starved for the love and attention of an older man" with "lustful"? She wasn't looking for sex, she was looking for a male authority figure that loved her. *He* was looking for sex.

"Lustful" would be jacking off to cheerleader porn, fantisizing about your students while in bed with your wife, and breaking your marriage vows by sleeping with a family friend. All of the aforementioned actions were taken not by the girl you see as "evil" and "the villain", but by the Broderick character.

But her pride, jealousy, wrath, and greed are evident.

Pride, jealousy, and wrath are characteristics displayed by every major character in the movie except Paul (who is merely guilty of lust). Tracy is no more guilty of those things than Paul's sister is, and far less guilty of them than the Broderick character. Consider, if you will, that the action that sets all of the events in motion is Broderick's, when he violates his ethical obligations as election supervisor by taking sides, pushing a kid into running against Tracy purely because of his own hatred and lust for her.

Is Tracy being wrathful and jealous when she shreds Paul's posters? Of course. But the situation she is feeling wrathful and jealous about was created by an unethical man in a position of power over her, as punishment for her having the gall to have been molested by his friend. It is impossible for me to see her as the villain there. She's smart, hard-working -- and losing, not because of any flaw in herself but because a hateful man wants her to lose.

No, he is morally pure.

Since you obsessively consider "lust" to be an example of moral failure it is impossible to consider Paul, who is interested in the election primarily because the girl he's banging wants him to run, as morally pure. He is, however, more morally pure than the other characters.

The point is that evil people like Tracy Flick can get away with their evil while morally pure people like Paul get screwed over because the rules are broken.

You obviously have some odd emotional issues where teenage girls are concerned. Calling Tracy "evil" because she tore down some posters in a fit of passion is simply insane, and your repeated attempts to blame *her* for her treatment at the hands of fully adult men is a bit nausea-inducing.

Mortimer Brezny said...

You obviously have some odd emotional issues where teenage girls are concerned.

Huh? Teenage girls are subject to lesser standards of morality? What bunk. What sexist bunk.

And the moral faults I have been ticking off are all cardinal sins. Shame on me for applying traditional Judeo-Christian morality to a character who ends up as a Republican congressman's aide.

the action that sets all of the events in motion is Broderick's, when he violates his ethical obligations as election supervisor by taking sides

No, the action that sets all the events in motion is Flick's decision to seek office. If she simply realized she didn't deserve to win and had some humility, everyone would have been spared everything that resulted.

Mortimer Brezny said...

[S]he was looking for a male authority figure that loved her.

In other words, she was looking for sex.

Mortimer Brezny said...

Since you obsessively consider "lust" to be an example of moral failure it is impossible to consider Paul, who is interested in the election primarily because the girl he's banging wants him to run, as morally pure.

Clearly you have odd emotional issues where young athletic males are concerned. That Paul took the advice of the girl he is having sex with does not make him impure; it reflects that he is a considerate lover and a good listener. I suppose to twisted supporters of evil like yourself it is a sin to listen and be considerate of others.

rcocean said...

Everyone has known Tracy Flicks. And no one seems to really like them. But why are they always successful?

And Hillary! really is a "Tracy Flick". No one *really* likes this women. Even Bill Clinton doesn't *like* her. The reason the Democrats want to nominate this Wellesley Tracy Flick is deep down they really want to lose.

Revenant said...

Huh? Teenage girls are subject to lesser standards of morality?

As I've already noted, you're holding a teenage girl to a stricter standard of morality than you are willing to hold adult men to, and throwing hyperbolic accusations of "evil" at trivial misdeeds while ignoring far more significant moral failings in the ostensible protagonist of the film.

In other words, she was looking for sex.

Ah, I get it -- you're just trolling. Silly me for falling for it for this long. I keep forgetting that you and Stodder are the same guy.

Synova said...

"How on Earth do you equate "young girl starved for the love and attention of an older man" with "lustful"?"

He's either Muslim or a charter member of the Moral Majority?

Synova said...

"Shame on me for applying traditional Judeo-Christian morality..."

If Revenant's description of the *actions* various people took in the movie is even remotely accurate... no, you're not.

Not unless by "traditional" you mean the type of "traditional" where men blame their lust on mind controlling hair rays.

Mortimer Brezny said...

I keep forgetting that you and Stodder are the same guy.

?

I am not John Stodder. Your remembrance of my alias is about as accurate as your analysis of the film.

Mortimer Brezny said...

If Revenant's description of the *actions* various people took in the movie

You seem to be ignoring that pride, wrath, jealousy, and lust are sins whether you act on them or not. Rev doesn't dispute that Flick is guilty of all these sins, he simply seeks to contextualize it, justify it, and compare it to the sins of others in the story.

My point is only that Flick is evil, her evil manifests in that scene in which she destroys the posters, and her evil is rewarded.

Rev seems to live in an alternate reality where the protagonist is the villain. That just isn't how the movie works. And his description of the holy jock as a lustful half-wit is simply inaccurate and cruel. The whole point of his character is that he isn't a half-wit or motivated by ulterior motives, but rather that he's actually pure. The deserving holy person who would serve best doesn't win the election. And the person who should have been disqualified -- Flick -- wins.

Flick is not a hero. She's a dirty cheater who violated the rules. And she's never remorseful about it, either. She knows she should be disqualified, but she doesn't come clean. That omission is an act, too. It's a cowardly one.

Mortimer Brezny said...

Not unless by "traditional" you mean the type of "traditional" where men blame their lust on mind controlling hair rays.

She chose to have sex with those men. She wasn't victimized.

Revenant said...

I keep forgetting that you and Stodder are the same guy.

Sorry, John Taylor, not John Stodder. Sorry, J.S. :)

Synova said...

"She chose to have sex with those men. She wasn't victimized."

And the men?

No, I haven't seen the movie but I've seen you, here, saying that the teacher who had sex with her wasn't at fault. That she was evil. She was lustful.

And you lecture about sins of pride while excusing acts of infidelity.

Mind controlling hair rays, dude.

Just like the imam in Afghanistan explained... women give off mind controlling hair rays because otherwise MEN would not do what they do. Men are excused because, you know, they have NEEDS. (A very "traditional" thought, right there.)

I have not seen you *just* explaining that Flick was not a nice person. Pretty clearly she's an unpleasant person. Pretty clearly she thinks that she worked hard and deserved to win.

You've been explaining that she was evil... not a flawed human being, but evil... and that she is the only one who did anything wrong. That the teacher did not victimize her (I agree this is rather nausea inducing) and that the other teacher who interfered in the election (do you dispute that?) did nothing wrong. That the only wrong *action* anyone took was her tearing down posters.

Oh, and *she's* sinfully lustful and a jock banging his girlfriend isn't.

Sorry DUDE but sex outside of marriage is a sin, even if you're a handsome and guileless jock.

I would also point out that *thought* sins are a Christian invention and not part of Judeo- tradition. For Jews it matters what you DO.

Revenant said...

Not unless by "traditional" you mean the type of "traditional" where men blame their lust on mind controlling hair rays.

Notice how he considers a 17-year-old girl to be the guilty party -- not the married teacher in his 30s who slept with her while his wife was pregnant. No, let's blame the lonely teenage girl with no friends; the predatory adult is just caught in her web of EVIL.

The nicest thing you could say about Mortimer is that he's trolling. The less generous reading of his posts would be to actually take him seriously. :)

No, I haven't seen the movie

You really should, though -- Reese should have gotten an Academy Award nomination for it (and the screenplay actually received one).

Mortimer Brezny said...

You've been explaining that she was evil... not a flawed human being, but evil... and that she is the only one who did anything wrong.

I never said Flick was evil for having had sex. I simply pointed out that she was lustful, and that's technically a sin. She engaged in a sex act that you say is immoral and if so it's immoral for both parties. I think it's a wash and so the sex issue is irrelevant to the election-related shenanigans. After all, the movie is called Election. Not Predatory Old Guys.

I did not say Flick is the only one who did anything wrong. But she is the villain of the story, and she is evil. Her wrath, pride, jealousy, and self-entitlement are all evident (her thoughts are manifest in voice-over and her speech on ethics and morals is in open class), and her treatment of Paul is shameful. When she rips down the posters, her evil is mafiest in an act. That act violates the rules and so she should be disqualified. When she has the opportunity to come clean about having violated the rules, she does not, and lets someone else take the fall for her evil deed. That is cowardly and immoral.

The only reason you are defending her is her sex. And that is sexist, not to mention condescending to women with moral character.

Methadras said...

Guys, it's just a movie. Okay, that was my Rodney King moment. My favorite parts in the whole movie however, have to do with the frenzied baying in the background whenever Ms. Flick starts to have a bought of uncontrolled inner rage. Every time I see someone acting like that, that sound effect goes right off in my head and I LO f'ing L.