We saw The Front Runner on day 10 of the 2018 Toronto Film Festival. The screening took place at the campus theater at Ryerson University. Touted as a political thriller, we definitely were not on the edge of our seats. Our view into the media’s apprehension in reporting the affair is interesting. Previously, the press overlooked most personal discretions, unlike now. Earlier this year we got a glimpse into this practice in Chappaquidick. Ted Kennedy faced very little blow back for his misdeed (which was so much worse). The Kennedy machine and Neil Armstrong’s walking on the moon (First Man) did help in deflecting the country’s attention, though the man remained a hero to many for his entire life.
Hugh Jackman is very convincing as Gary Hart, the disgraced political candidate confused that his personal life made a difference. His long-suffering wife, Lee is played by Vera Farmiga with very little energy. Sara Paxton makes a brief appearance as Donna Rice, her outrage is comical! Even though it is always nice to see J.K. Simmons, his portrayal of Bill Dixon was also very subdued. Mark O’Brien (Bad Times at the El Royale), Tommy Dewey (Book Club), and Kaitlyn Dever (Beautiful Boy) round out the cast of this mediocre film.
Our Rating for The Front Runner
Official Trailer for The Front Runner
Official Synopsis for The Front Runner
American Senator Gary Hart’s presidential campaign in 1988 is derailed when he’s caught in a scandalous love affair.
The Front Runner TIFF Q & A
|Cast||Hugh Jackman, Vera Farmiga, J.K. Simmons, Mark O’Brien, Tommy Dewey, Kaitlyn Dever, Sara Paxton|
|Director||Jason Reitman (Tully)|
|Screenwriter||Matt Bai, Jay Carson, Jason Reitman, based on the book “All the Truth is Out” by Matt Bai|
|Cinematographer||Eric Steelberg (Tully)|
|Editor||Stefan Grube (Tully)|
|Production Companies||Bron Studios, Right of Way Films, Stage 6 Films, Creative Wealth Films|
|Run Time||113 minutes|
|Premier||2018 Telluride Film Festival|