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The 12 Best Examples of How Movies View Politics

The CampaignMovies do not portray politics in a positive light.  Despite its vital importance to a country’s well being, the American film view of politics is often cynical.  Ever since Mr. Smith went to Washington, the atrocities of authority have been featured in film.  Here are twelve sample screen quotes that reveal the great difference between real leadership and what politics has become.

“Remember the first rule of politics. The ballots don't make the results, the counters make the results. The counters. Keep counting.”
Gangs of New York (2002) – Boss Tweed (Jim Broadbent)

“American voters want their leaders to be dumber than they are. They figure they'll do less harm that way.”
Mindwalk (1990) – Jack (Sam Waterston)
 

“Who cares about this stupid election?  Do you really think it's going to change anything around here; make one single person smarter or happier or nicer? The only person it does matter to is the one who gets elected.”
Election (1999) – Tammy Metzler (Jessica Campbell)
 

“You answered without saying anything. That's politics.”
Lawrence of Arabia (1962) – Jackson Bentley (Arthur Kennedy) 

“The election is ancient history, Zaphod. If memory serves, you won, proving that good looks and charm win over brilliance and the ability to govern.”
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (2005) – Humma Kavula (John Malkovich)
 

“Napoleon once said when asked to explain the lack of great statesmen in the world, that "to get power you need to display absolute pettiness; to exercise power, you need to show true greatness." Such pettiness and greatness are rarely found in one person.”
The Contender (2000) – President Jackson Evans (Jeff Bridges) 

“You care more about your re-election than you care about all our lives.”
Osmosis Jones (2001) – Leah (Brandy Norwood)
 

“I haven't seen so much mudslinging since the last election!”
A Day at the Races (1937) – Dr. Hackenbush (Groucho Marx)
 

“You politicians have stayed professionals only because the voters have remained amateurs.”
State of the Union (1948) – Mary Matthews (Katherine Hepburn)
 

“I’m for total honest democracy.  I also believe the American system can work.”
Stardust Memories (1980) – Sandy Bates (Woody Allen) 

“Never promise the voters more than they'll believe.”
Mr. Ace (1946) – Johnny Ace (George Raft)
 

Vote for me, and all your wildest dreams will come true.”
Napoleon Dynamite (2004) – Pedro (Efren Ramirez)

Check Out: More Political Film Quotes
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