Quite apart from the acting or the production values of the film, “W” very nearly accurately reflects the relationships not only of Bush and his father but of the entire Bush cabinet.
I would take the relationship of George W with George H a large step further.
I believe George W. Bush intentionally made a mess of his presidency. He did this essentially through the invasion of Iraq. The purpose of which was simply to punish his father. His father regarded him as a “screw up”. His presidency has been a screw up, but not by accident. It has been intentional. George W. Bush knew everything he was doing was the “wrong” thing to do. It is not a question of intelligence, it’s a question of intention. Any fool could see that an invasion of Iraq was the “wrong thing” to do.
The purpose of George Bush’s invasion of Iraq was to punish his father by screwing up on a monumental presidential level. The purpose was to destroy the Bush name, by destroying in any way possible, the image of America. The image of his father. This is a typical famalial pattern. The son keeps doing self destructive things. The upstanding father cannot understand why. It’s not because the son is stupid. It’s because the son is punishing the father. It’s really trite.
You can simply reverse everything George W. Bush has said about “America” and freedom and his love of freedom and of Bush’s often stated perception about “those who hate freedom”. It is George Bush who hates America, not Al Queda. Al Queda is a myth. Al Queda is used as a vehicle for George W. Bush to displace his hatred of America. And America is George W. Bush’s father.
Now, we see in the film that all of George W’s advisors eventually indulge George Bush. They indulge him, they enable him. I believe this is accurate. Dick Cheney, is a provincial and essientially unsophisticated man has achieved through political experience the appearance of sophistication. But he is an actor with avuncular “chops”. Cheney is an extremely paranoid individual and is certainly a force that is aligned, for different reasons, not suicidal, with George W. Bush and his need to self destruct. It’s as if George W is saying to his father, “Oh you think i’m a screw up huh?…I’ll show you how much of a screw up I can be. I’ll screw things up so bad it will make your head spin. I’ll destroy everything in the world that you like, I’ll destroy the world as you know it.” And that is exactly what he has done. George W. has unraveled everything his father did during his presidency.
Almost all the the important treaties, all the foreign and domestic policies of his father have been thrown out.
I thought the actors were fine in the film, but it’s really irrelevant. The point of Bush’s presidency, the essence of this bizzarre human failure is brought out in the film.
Oliver Stone is not dumb.
What is not brought out and is a topic for another film, is the reason why an entire population of people indulged this person for 8 years in his utterly pointless wars. Not to mention, of course, his destruction of the American economy for which no one is blaming him.
Why hasn’t one senator, one congressman, one journalist, one somebody somewhere stood up and called George Bush out. I’m mean really called him out. He is a very distrubed person. He is psychologically distrubed, deeply disturbed. His disturbance is not unusual. But it is unusual for a person to become president WHOSE INTENTION IS TO FAIL.
Perhaps the destruction of the American economy was an unforseen but inevitable bonus for George W. That’s another issue.
Large parts of the American population want to die. Large parts of America are secretly suicidal. They use religion and the excuse of the “rapture” to cover their simple desire to die. They prefer to live in heaven. They don’t want to be here on Earth all that much. So, we can say, as conservative as they may be, they really don’t care all that much about “America”. The real interest of the fundamentalist is “Heaven”. I call that being suicidal.
They are George Bush’s base.