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Primary Colors (1998) Movie Information

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Primary Colors (1998)
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Comedy, Drama





Theater Date:



Mike Nichols


John Travolta
Emma Thompson
Billy Bob Thornton
Kathy Bates
Adrian Lester
Maura Tierney





Plot Outline:

Based on Joe Klein's book - a young, energetic man follows a presidential candidate and witness the political savvy and questionable morals that are introduced along the way. -- Chris Kavan

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Quick Movie Reviews

mitchellyoung 07/19/2011 (0 of 0 found this helpful)

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A lot of the fun in the film is picking apart the thinly-veiled layers of satire based on real life scandals involving the Clinton administration. Let's face it, every actor in this film is doing an impression of a real life person and if you view the movie as pure political satire, it mostly works.

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Chris Kavan 10/27/2009 (0 of 0 found this helpful)

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Political satire or sad truth? However you spin it, Primary Colors is a thinly veiled look into Clinton's 1992 campaign. While some of the casting is works, I never really liked Travolta here and it runs out of gas towards the end.

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frenchfreyteetor 12/08/2007 (0 of 0 found this helpful)

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I am a huge John Travolta fan and I also like American/patriotic movies but this one just didn't do it for me. Good try John.

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Full Movie Reviews

Movie God

08/09/2018 (0 of 0 found this helpful)

If the West Wing was a movie, right?

I mean, C.J. Cregg is right there in the opening scenes.

This is one of those political movies that is of its time yet feels relevant today. PRIMARY COLORS is funny and boasts a good cast. Adrian Lester is the heart of the film as an enterprising young consultant assisting a popular candidate (Travolta) to win the White House.

John Travolta is having a lot of fun playing a charming caricature of Bill Clinton while Emma Thompson is his shrewd dignified wife. Billy Bob Thornton and Kathy Bates play two ruthless if eccentric political strategists.

The obvious parallels between Travolta's Governor Stanton and President Clinton aren't even disputed in-universe.This frees the movie to roll with the humor and absurdity that can come with a presidential campaign. It's may be a comedy ...

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Movie God

01/25/2012 (0 of 0 found this helpful)

"Primary Colors" by Yojimbo

Primary Colours is a political satire following a southern governor who bears a striking resemblance to Bill Clinton on his presidential campaign trail. This film was obviously aimed far more at mainstream audiences than I was hoping for and so seems very tame to anyone used to the likes of The Thick Of It or even 70s sitcom Yes Minister. The story is shown through the eyes of the idealistic grandson of a civil rights activist played by Adrian Lester, but as we don't get to learn much about him, there is little in the way of emotional involvement; in fact the whole "human drama" aspect of it felt very forced. Travolta's drawling womaniser is shown to be basically an honest and straight talking man with one flaw, and this lack of satirical bite also compromises his character. What does mak...

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