Jim McAllister is a Social Studies teacher at Carver High. A student of his, Tracy Flick, tends to rub him the wrong way. Flick, a loner and ambitious girl, decides to run for class president. McAllister convinces football player Paul to run against her. His lesbian sister Tammy joins the election after her girlfriend starts going out with Paul. During the campaigns, Tracy plays dirty, plying students with muffins and gum. Tammy adopts an anarchist attitude that the student body responds to. Paul has few skills to offer the position. Meanwhile, McAllisters going through a bad time with his wife.
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When I first saw Reese Witherspoon in "The man in the Moon" back in the early 90's, it was clear that she'd be a star one day. Her stunning acting talents were also very evident. Here, she is nothing less than stunning. In a performance completely devoid of self-consciousness, she embodies a character she herself bears no resemblance to in real life. Matthew Broderick is amazing here, too, in a film of real originality.
This movie is by far the best movie I've seen based on High School... picks up the quintiessential high school experience!
There are not words to express how much I loathed this film. Somewhereafter the opening credits, the plot went down hill...FAST! I have not seenmany movies that I have not liked, but this one is by far the front runnerfor the Razzie this year.
[A] wicked, carnal comedy.
When I first heard about Election, that movie was in the nominees for"BestInspired Screenplay" for the Oscars. When I visited this site for furtherexplanation about the movie, I was really unsure about seeing it. When Ifinally watched it yesterday on cable, I was ashamed that I didn't see itsooner. This movie tries and succeeds on being different types of movies.In fact, it takes the craziness of "American Pie" or "There's Somethingabout Mary" and combines it with any political movie you've seen. MatthewBroderick proves he can act in this feature and Reese Witherspoon is greatin her "perfect-student" role.I give this movie 8 out of ten.
Election was a great satire on the high school life. It had all of thestereotypical types of high school students. The dumb jock, theannoying overachiever, the "bad" teachers, etc. This movie really showswhat people think it is like to be in high school. Being a studentcurrently in high school, i am aware of some of these details and ihave seen some of them. This movie also shows that teachers are not asgood as people think that they are. They are humans too, and they alsomake mistakes and do the wrong things. This is shows my Mr. McAllisterby crumpling up 2 of Tracy Flicks votes in order for her to lose. Whathe did was very wrong for a person, let alone a teacher. It shows thatteachers are not as innocent as people think they are. This was a verygreat movie that i throughly enjoyed.
Good storytelling and high school comedies seem to never gohand-in-hand, especially when MTV is involved, but "Election" breaksthat barrier. Sure, it helps that it's more dark comedy and involvesadult topics and situations, but Alexander Payne has crafted a filmthat surpasses high school clichÃ©s. He skillfully juggles four highlydeveloped protagonists at once, three of them high school students, andmanages to squeeze something more than a coming-of-age story out ofthem.Adapted from a novel by Tom Perrotta, "Election" centers around thetitular event, in particular one for high school president.Overachiever Tracy Flick (Witherspoon) expects to run unopposed, butstudent government adviser Jim McAllister (Broderick) strongly dislikesher after her affair with another teacher, one Jim was friends with,got the teacher fired. Disgusted by the idea of her getting anothersomething she wants without consequence, Jim inspires the injuredquarterback of the football team, Paul Metzler (Chris Klein), to runagainst her. As if that weren't enough, Paul's younger sister Tammy, asophomore, decides to run when her best friend ditches her and startsdating Paul.Payne's screenplay calls for a lot of narration among these fourcharacters. We get inside their heads to learn of their consciousdesire for why they're running or in Jim's case trying to ruin Tracy,but what we see on screen, of course, are some major subconsciousmotives. For example, everything going on in Jim's personal life -- hisinability to get his wife pregnant and his eye for his recentlydivorced friend -- bleeds into his conduct at school. His narrationsays life was going good, when we see he's already making the choicesthat will lead to a foreshadowed end. Payne executes narrative here theway it's supposed to be done. It might seem overwhelming with fourcharacters, but the transition is logical and often times clever.These are four great characters too, with the perfect actors in theirparts. Each is given a clear portrait, characteristics that we like anddislike. Jim is an excellent, award-winning teacher with a sound moralcompass, then again he denies issues in his personal life. Broderick'sboyish looks but good dramatic skills have always helped him playdouble-sided characters. Tracy is ruthless and cares way too much, butwe see her lonely side too, her fear when she crosses the line asportrayed well in her inner-monologue by Witherspoon. Klein plays anexcellent Paul, dumb and naive, but well-intentioned and lovable. ThenTammy, with her rebellious exterior, seems to be the most honest.Unlike most high school comedies, the dark nature of the humor in"Election" keeps the events of the film mostly unpredictable, thesurprising actions taken by the students and Jim throughout the storyto get their way can be startling, unsettling or even emotional attimes. This isn't your typical high school revenge story, thecharacters make choices based on their personal lives, their deepcharacter issues, not strictly for laughs or because their "jock" or"goody two-shoes" stereotype calls for it. Payne establishes that thisfilm is really about the democratic ideas of the election, the choiceswe make in our lives and the underlying moral or morally questionabledesires that guide them in sometimes irrational ways. Whether in highschool or older, we still make those choices all the time. To Payne, wecan actually find meaning in high school drama in addition to humor.
I felt uncomfortable for nearly the duration of this tremendously well put together piece.
This movie was most interesting when it focused on the battle between the girl Tracy, her opponent and the principal. But there were way too many bizarre tangents and peripheral characters that turned the movie into a freakshow.
Matthew Broderick plays a teacher who is determined to get his strong-willed student Tracy Flick (Reese Witherspoon) out of the school election. When Jim, the teacher, suddenly realises he has gone too far, his teaching career comes at risk.I didn't really think Election looked all that good. But it was BRILLIANT. I really love this film, all the performances are excellent, the screenplay is Oscar-worthy and the directing effort is amazing. Election is one of those movies where you just can't get enough of it, it is surely one of the best pictures of 1999.
Passable, if overly obvious, satire relating to high school success,teacher-student relationships, teachers' private lives and the price ofsuccess in general. This is one of Broderick's best roles, and Witherspoonis good as well, though the script could have been so much more. Itsobvious nature means it's way too overlong: you can see where it's goingwithin the first twenty minutes, but it's pretentious enough to assume theaudience hasn't got a brain and can't think things through for itself. America doesn't make that many good movies: you'd think when it hits on anidea like this it would try to make the most of it. Instead, we've gotsomething comparable to PUSHING TIN, though obviously not nearly as bad: inaddition to the actual story, we get the whole thing summarised after theclimax and tied off nicely. Grow up, America, and start making more filmsthat are actually good. The fact that ELECTION gets an average vote of 7.6is testimony to the America public's feelings of starvation: other than thefour Oscar-nominated best films each year, there is nothing, even thoughthere are ten-plus films released every week. Rating:6/10.
I haven't read the novel(or anything else by Perrotta), but if it'sanything like this adaptation, I may very well give it a shot. This isthe first thing by Payne that I've watched, and I'd like to see more.With biting satire, this tackles love, ambition, and politics. As adark comedy, this is hilarious, if it does get a tad hard to believe ina couple of places(never so much so that it takes you out of theenjoyment of the whole, however). It all revolves around a high schoolelection. The plot is great, and it moves along very nicely. This has asolid pace, and you're not bored for a second. The narration shiftssmoothly back and forth. This is quite well-written. The script and thedialog are excellent. There are several clever, quotable lines in this.The characters are well-developed and credible, if occasionallypsychotic. It is a blast, as usual, to see Chris Klein parody himselfand his physical size, something he must be rather comfortable with.The acting performances are very good. Matthew and Reese show a lot ofrange. There is plenty of strong language, as well as a bit(I'd saymost of it is spoken or referred to) of sexuality(as this deals withfrustration of, well, the meaning of the metaphor that comprises thefirst image of this is unmissable), and brief explicit imagery in this.The DVD holds an interesting director's commentary, though he can'tstop praising Broderick. I recommend this to anyone who can imagineliking this. 8/10
"Election" has gotten the praise of many and it is all deserved. MatthewBroderick, Reese Witherspoon, Chris Klein, and Mark Harelik all give greatperformances. Alexander Payne's direction is great, Jim Taylor and Payne'sscreenplay is near perfection.They portray these essential losers and all around shallow individuals toaperfect t.Reese Witherspoon is Tracy Flick the Miss Good Girl who is extremelysmart,hard working, and knows who to sleep with.Chris Klein plays Paul Metzler and he is, well, he is good natured, but helives in la la land and is a complete moron. And he stole his sistersgirlfriend. Weird family.Matthew Broderick is Jim McAllister. Well, he is the most screwed up ofthemall. He has a good life. He has a good job, loving wife, and all that goodstuff. Sure it is a little dull but most everyone's life is a little dull.But he isn't pleased with good. So he throws his life away. He is bitterandresentful, even if he is right. He is Kevin Spacy's character in "AmericanBeauty" minus the balls.And this movie circles around them and a few other losers. It follows themthrough the school election for class president.As we watch this dark comedy and laugh at all these miserable beingsdestroytheir lives and/or those around them, I can't help but wonder if that ishealthy.Anyway, I think "Election" is a good movie. But I just didn't enjoy it. Iliked no one and perhaps that is the point. Unlike "Rushmore" I couldn'tlook and see something redeemable about these people, nothing for me to atthe very least like them in some small way.So, I give Election a 6.5. It gets 5 points just for the talent of it butonly a 1.5 for entertainment. But most fans of dark comedy will like this,Ijust got bored to be perfectly honest.
What kind of people run for public office? If you answered people who want to change the world, you need to run around the block a hundred times, fall on your face a couple of hundred times and live for another ten years. Alternatively, you could watch Alexander Payne's brutal satire which effectively argues that there are only three categories under which all potential candidates fall: 1) Narcissistic, compulsive and ultimately pathetic over-achievers. Represented with horrific accuracy in the film by the detestable Tracy Flick(Reese Witherspoon). 2) Moronic, albiet popular, pawns controlled by a puppeteer with his/her own alterior motives. The earnest idiots of this category are accurately embodied in the form of Paul Metzler(Chris Klein) with endearing ineptitude. 3) Disillusioned idealistic outcasts who want to get elected just to discredit the painfully rehearsed and pointless electoral process. This rare type of candidate is represented by Paul's lesbian adopted sister, Tammy(Jessica Campbell). Like the filmmakers of Election, Tammy soon recognises the futility of her cause, looks at the whole phenomenon from a different angle and finds the whole thing funny. Oh yes, Election is a very funny film. Like the best of films, Election never stretches to make its point(s). If you haven't heard of it, you may be surprised to learn that its events largely transpire in a High School where the seemingly model Civics and History teacher, Mr.Jim McAllister is suffering the muted symptoms of early middle age anxiety(shades of American Beauty) and visible agititation at the ravenous academic success of Tracy Flick. He hates her, its as simple as that. She's gotten his best friend fired after a torrid affair, knows the answers to every question he asks and unlike him, she has a single minded purpose in life. As one of the film's four narrators, McAllister claims to have a happy life and that his relationship with his wife is "closer then ever" after nine years. But when he returns home, his head filled with angry thoughts at the malignant Flick, his wife asks "Anything wrong?" He replies smiling "No, nothing." After years of being the model, bland citizen, I think he's jealous of Tracy Flick. For an actor who's been terminally bland since his days as Ferris Beuller, Broderick's performance as the teacher is a revelation. He effectivly communicates the growing bitterness under McAllister's polite exterior. With its depiction of midlife angst, dis-satisfaction and teenage confusion Election is comparible to American Beauty. Where Sam Mendes's Oscar winner adopted a more lyrical,poetic approach, Election goes for acute satire. And like Beauty, it is surprisingly sympathetic to its characters(Even the detestable Flick gets a couple of moments to impersonate a lonely human being.) I recently caught Alexander Payne's previous effort, Citizen Ruth on TV. While it has recieved many good reviews, I found the film a little to broad. In Election on the other hand, he seems to be in complete control. His use of multiple narration will remind you of Scorsese's Goodfellas, and like that mafia opus, there are self-contained sequences of sheer brilliance. His use of freeze-frame, frenzied pace(behold the bee sting sequence) and rock tunes on the soundtrack are all on par with Scorsese. This is a director to watch. Election is a satire, so the character traits are obviously exaggerated. But in my time in highshool, there was a thoroughly detestable breed of quasi-Tracey Flicks infesting my school's final year. These kid suceeded in being the teacher's pet, the constant organisers of all classroom activities while simaltanously trying to appear down to earth and friends with the rest of us. The more I think of them, the more I sympathise with McAllister, I could just kic.....arghh. One must learn to be diplomatic.
I was stunned by how cool Election was.At first I was really expectingjust an okay movie, and even though I love Reece Witherspoon I was justnot expecting so much from this.Well when this was over, all I wasthinking was, wow.It was so clever and so funny and in a way didn'tshow to much of a stereotype that we as a society assume is highschool.But instead took a very realistic portrayal while at the sametime being aware of its genre types was so cool and very funny.MathewBrodrick and Reece Witherspoon were so good and so cool and not onlythe characters were cool but also the comedy moments were so funny.Eventhough the story structure seemed kinda bad(like I felt some thingshappened to fast while other things didn't happen fast enough), andalso it seemed a little unnecessary (like some sexual content wasuncalled for), but its still a cool movie.Overall if your looking for acool comedy than Election is the film you should see.8.3 out of 10 stars
I was wondering if anybody has, or knows where to get, a 'Pick Flick'badge, like the ones seen in the movie? I don't care if it's a replicaor a collectors, I just want one of those goddamn badges! As long as it has 'PICK FLICK' and the black and white image of 'tracyflick' on it, we're good to go!If anyone also has a copy or knows where to find a copy of the imagethat is on the badge, that would be greatly appreciated.Thanks, Yves"Every day I tried to think of new ways to tell Lisa I loved her... 'Ifyou died right now, I would throw myself under one of my Dad's cementtrucks so I could be poured into your tomb.'"
This is the best thing MTV movies has produced to date. The acting was EXCELLLENT! The story was flimsy but did a great job of examining different peoples motives and weaknesses. I especially liked the whole commentary on the questionable maturity and motives of public school employees. I wish there was 3-1/2 star rating on this site, because that is really what it deserves. I highly recommend seeing this movie.
This satirical battle of wits will engage and amuse like few other contemporary comedies. Witherspoon is priceless as the perfect schoolgirl everyone loves to hate, and Broderick also holds up his end as her counselor.
The characters were great, and the overall situation was really funny. Matthew Broderick's swollen eye made me hate him less. This movie was full of sex scenes, so don't do what I did, and sit right next to an old couple in the movie theater. Buy it.