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The President's Analyst (1967)

Cast: James Coburn, James Coburn, Godfrey Cambridge, more...
Director: Theodore J. Flicker, Theodore J. Flicker
    see all cast/crew...
Rating: Not Rated
Studio: Paramount
Genre: Comedies, Political Satire
Running Time: 102 min.
Languages: English
Subtitles: English
    see additional details...

The President's Analyst is James Coburn, whose position makes him privy to any number of delicate government secrets. Thus Coburn becomes a most desirable prize for several secret-agent organizations, including the CEA and the FBR (we know who these folks are really supposed to be, even though the phony names were crudely dubbed onto the soundtrack after the film was completed). When Coburn becomes expendable, he finds a pair of strong allies in the form of likeable political assassin Godfrey Cambridge and gay Soviet spy Severn Darden. The main plot involves an insidious, unnamed concern that wishes to harness Coburn's talents in order to brainwash the president -- and everyone else in America -- into submission. The President's Analyst is a terrific, on-target satire of virtually every sacred cow of the late 1960s; the satire was so potent, in fact, that when the NBC network broadcast the film in the early 1970s, it was compelled to remove the picture's punchline. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Nothing new by kamapuaa March 13, 2005 - 6:20 PM PST
1 out of 1 members found this review helpful
The 60s are the most satirized decade ever. For somebody born after the 60s, you're probably more familiar with the satire then the genuine article. A movie with digs at flower children, psychoanalysis, the cold war, etc., has to really excel to stand out from the pack.

However, the satire is gentle and the actual drama (which occupies too much of the film) is impossible to care about by the nature of the satire. It seems tired and bland now, however inventive it was when the movie was first released.

I won't spoil the ending, but I admit it seemed more of a historic reference than a joke to me. Truth be told, the same could be said of the entire movie.

Brilliant, Madcap Sixties Spy Flick by kinsugi August 2, 2004 - 11:08 PM PDT
4 out of 5 members found this review helpful
This droll comedy is my favorite James Coburn film and probably my favorite look back at the chaotic '60's. In 1967, the Cold War was in full swing, hundreds of thousands of Americans were serving in Viet Nam, antiwar activists were in the streets, Martin Luther King exhorted religious leaders to break their silence, and our morning paper brought us bleak stories and photos from independent journalists about dark realities at home and abroad. The President's Analyst could not have been made at any other moment in history.

Avoiding Viet Nam, this film makes fun of everything else: politics, hippies, powerful and secretive government agencies, flower power, corporate intrusion into citizen's lives, suburbia, the middle class, private ownership of firearms, VW busses, trendy psychoanalysis, technology, sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll. A progression of goofy, physical, madcap escapades will leave you laughing helplessly, whether you were alive then or just wonder what the '60's were like for your parents or grandparents.

James Coburn was a steady presence in TV and film roles for more than 40 years. He could be a persuasive bad guy, but he was an engaging and terrifically funny comic actor with a famous grin, probably best known for his role as Our Man Flint, spoofing 007-style spy flicks.

Stressed because he's the only one the President can talk to, Coburn, in the title role, has a breakdown the likes of which you've never seen, and because of what he knows, everyone wants a piece of him, alive or dead. We are rocked from pillar to post with Coburn as he is thrown from one dangerous situation into another, completely out of control. There are shades of Monty Python weirdness, as our hero loses touch with reality and tries to stay alive until the end of the movie.

Note: Please DON'T TELL ANYONE THE END OF THE MOVIE. This would be a MAJOR spoiler. Some viewers may figure it out, but in 1967 the surprise ending had audiences screaming with laughter at their favorite villain's comeuppance. Rent this hilarious film and don't forget the popcorn.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.75)
32 Votes
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