Swing Vote

  • Film
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This starring vehicle for Kevin Costner is a strange fish: part folksy, Southern comedy, part Deeds-ian, pre-US election, political conscience movie, part generation-gap tear-jerker and all baloney. Costner, as gratingly ingratiating as ever, plays Bud, the ‘lovable’ ramshackle, ever-hungover, blue-collar single dad to 12-year-old verbal sharpshooter daughter Molly (Madeleine Carroll) in Texico, New Mexico, who finds the presidential election is hung on his single vote.

How? Don’t ask– it’s a hanging chad kinda thing, which results in Kelsey Grammer’s overconfident sitting Republican president and Dennis Hopper’s Democratic hopeful outdoing each other both in their shameless courting of the first frightened then flattered ‘ordinary joe’ and also in the spineless policy reversals they offer in response to his homespun political appeals. Costner is the presiding spirit here, rather than director Joshua Michael Stern (who’s slated to direct our Keira in the upcoming ‘King Lear’) and must take all the blame – he shoots simultaneously for ‘wake up, America!’ inspiration and good ol’ boy charm but ends up putting both barrels through his own cowboy-booted foot.

Release details

Rated: 12A
Release date: Friday September 26 2008
Duration: 120 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Joshua Michael Stern
Screenwriter: Jason Richman, Joshua Michael Stern
Cast: Kevin Costner
Madeline Carroll
Kelsey Grammer
Dennis Hopper
Molly Johnson
Paula Patton
Nathan Lane
Stanley Tucci
George Lopez
Judge Reinhold
Charles Esten
Richard Petty
Willie Nelson
Mare Winningham
Gary Farmer
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