Thursday, April 12, 2012


Known as The Great Communicator, Ronald Reagan was a charismatic leader who became President at a time of economic despondency and garnered a fervent following as he led the country for two terms into a conservative age, one which saw the beginning of the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union. Today many speak his name with the reverence held for the great leaders of our distant past, while others see him as a misrepresented figure, unduly credited with many of the achievements and not given enough criticism in his time. Eugene Jarecki's "Reagan" is a fascinating look at the 40th President of the United States from his early days in relative poverty, to his breakthrough as a B-picture actor up until his political career which included his governorship of California and his often lionized but also questionable presidency. Jarecki's film is wonderfully cut from a great amount of footage which is abetted by interviews with proponents, including family members, as well as detractors. Reagan was a compelling figure, whose legacy can be interpreted in a number of differing ways, and is documentary does an excellent job of conveying that.