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The Assassination of Richard Nixon (2004)

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2:31 | Trailer

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Based on real life events, Assassination is set in 1974 and centers on a businessman who decides to take extreme measures to achieve his American dream.

Director:

Niels Mueller
2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sean Penn ... Samuel J. Bicke
Naomi Watts ... Marie Andersen Bicke
Don Cheadle ... Bonny Simmons
Jack Thompson ... Jack Jones
Brad William Henke ... Martin Jones (as Brad Henke)
Nick Searcy ... Tom Ford
Michael Wincott ... Julius Bicke
Mykelti Williamson ... Harold Mann
April Grace ... Mae Simmons
Lily Knight ... Receptionist
Jared Dorrance ... Sammy Jr.
Jenna Milton ... Ellen
Mariah Massa ... Julie
Eileen Ryan ... Marie's Mother
Derek Greene Derek Greene ... Joey Simmons
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Storyline

Fact-based story about a disturbed office furniture salesman who in 1972 concocted a plot to kill then-President Nixon by hi-jacking a plane to fly over the White House to drop a gas bomb. At the start of the movie, the man is separated from his wife and stressed in his job where he is made the butt of jokes and is an under-performer. Attempts to get his brother's old tire business resurrected with a black partner is rejected by the banks. When he is officially served with divorce papers, everything comes apart and Richard Nixon's broken promises comes to represent all the evils that have come down on him. A news story about a pilot that landed a helicopter on the White House lawn gives him the idea for his attack. Bolting onto a Baltimore plane, he attempts the hi-jacking. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Power is a state of mind. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and a scene of graphic violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Mexico

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 October 2004 (Greece) See more »

Also Known As:

The Assassination of L.B.J. See more »

Filming Locations:

Alameda, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$37,547, 2 January 2005

Gross USA:

$697,759
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Black and White (archive footage)| Color (archive footage)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Samuel Bicke applied 10-cent US flag postage stamps upside down on the large envelopes he mailed to Leonard Bernstein in New York City. The US Flag Code states that the Union on the flag should not be displayed "down" except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property. See more »

Goofs

A version of the film that was sent to festivals before the visual effects were complete, contains images of aircraft that are not from the story's time period. Shortly after, the visual effects team, digitally removed these logos and added ones from period appropriate airlines. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Samuel Bicke: Testing. Testing. Testing. One, two, three. Mr. Maestro, Leonard Bernstein, tape number one.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Comeback: Valerie Faces the Critics (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Your Misty Eyes
Written by Steven Stern and Alexander Norris
Performed by Selectracks Studio Ensemble
Courtesy of Selectracks Music Services
Published by Seven Mile Lane Music (ASCAP) and Hatton Road Music (BMI)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The most moving film I've seen in years
16 November 2004 | by buddymail99See all my reviews

I caught this film at AFI primarily due to my interest in Sean Penn and indeed his performance is spectacular. But Mr. Penn's performance alone is not what makes this a truly great film. The intelligent writing, well-timed and rich score, and supportive performances by Naomi Watts, Jack Thompson and Don Cheadle blend perfectly in this marvelously crafted feature transporting the viewer into the lives and era of the exquisitely human characters who are so elegantly portrayed. Sean Penn's performance leans heavily on the clever and complex writing which offers him the opportunity to display an impressive range of pathos. The writers have managed to depict the very human and sympathetic side of a character that would typically be cast as the villain. I think this is a hugely important film for that reason and on many other levels as well. The writers are able to very subtly include sociopolitical commentary without being "in your face" or at all judgmental as the political arena is viewed through the lead character's eyes yet not really distorted due to the inclusion of archival footage. The unexpected doses of humor matched perfectly with the poignancy of the lead character's plight. This film is so moving, scenes and dialogue echo in the corners of the mind for days after the first viewing. I'll definitely be seeing Assassination again.


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