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NIXON
1995, Buena Vista Pictures, 192 min, USA, Dir: Oliver Stone

This ambitious biopic of our 37th president earned four Oscar nominations, including nods for Anthony Hopkins’ performance in the title role and Joan Allen’s supporting work as wife Pat Nixon. A nuanced portrait of Richard Nixon from his days as a young boy to his downfall in the aftermath of the Watergate break-in, the film underlines how lonely and treacherous the halls of power can become. With James Woods, Ed Harris and Paul Sorvino.


BORN ON THE FOURTH OF JULY
1989, Universal, 145 min, USA, Dir: Oliver Stone

Based on the autobiography of Vietnam War veteran Ron Kovic, this powerful film earned fellow Vietnam vet Oliver Stone a Best Director Oscar. In one of his best performances, Tom Cruise stars as Kovic, a Marine wounded in a firefight and paralyzed from the chest down. Returning to a society that is indifferent if not hostile, he struggles to reconcile the rhetoric about the war with its reality, eventually taking a place at the front lines of the protest movement. Costarring Kyra Sedgwick and Willem Dafoe.


THE PEOPLE VS. LARRY FLYNT
1996, Sony Repertory, 129 min, USA, Dir: Milos Forman

Millionaire pornographer Larry Flynt may seem an unlikely subject for a biopic, but in the hands of director Milos Forman and screenwriters Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski, his life and legal battles brilliantly illuminate the continuing American conflict between free speech and censorship. The outstanding cast is led by Woody Harrelson as the Hustler magazine founder, rocker Courtney Love as doomed stripper Althea Leasure and Edward Norton as attorney Alan Isaacman.


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