thinkfilm | Release Date: December 29, 2004
8.5
USER SCORE
Universal acclaim based on 32 Ratings
USER RATING DISTRIBUTION
Positive:
28
Mixed:
2
Negative:
2
WATCH NOW
Buy On
Review this movie
VOTE NOW
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Check box if your review contains spoilers 0 characters (5000 max)
9
VinceH.Apr 28, 2005
Sean Penn is absoultely amazing in this movie. Yes this is a very well-made and intelligent study of the interior life of a tortude man, and a good one at that. But it is Penn who lifts this above an average and pretentious art film. This is Sean Penn is absoultely amazing in this movie. Yes this is a very well-made and intelligent study of the interior life of a tortude man, and a good one at that. But it is Penn who lifts this above an average and pretentious art film. This is a far more powerful and affecting a performance than either Mystic River or 21 Grams. Get the movie for his acting alone. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
9
JulieL.Jun 10, 2005
Not a film for people who want to be coddled and spoon-fed. A thinkers' film, with an absolutely rivteing (you can't take your eyes off him) performance by Sean Penn.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
8
JeffM.Aug 17, 2006
Very interesting. Penn really makes you feel for this poor bastard, but still never makes him remotely likeable. Very high degree of difficulty on that one.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
TerryM.Jan 20, 2005
The style was that of an indie on the cheap, yet it perfectly fit the subject matter. The lighting was non-existent, the shooting was shaky and the whole feel was chilly and depressing, a perfect analogy to the central character's state The style was that of an indie on the cheap, yet it perfectly fit the subject matter. The lighting was non-existent, the shooting was shaky and the whole feel was chilly and depressing, a perfect analogy to the central character's state of mind. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
garyl.Apr 8, 2005
Best film (and best performance by Penn) of the year. By a long shot the most affecting film I've seen in the last year or two.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
8
Myles#13Sep 8, 2006
Note to future viewers: if you don't like thinking during movies, do NOT rent 'Assassination'. Sean Penn's performance is meant to make the average person realize the often meaningless-ness of their existence. 'The Note to future viewers: if you don't like thinking during movies, do NOT rent 'Assassination'. Sean Penn's performance is meant to make the average person realize the often meaningless-ness of their existence. 'The Assassination of Richard Nixon' played like a modern day 'Death of a Salesman'... in both, the lead character becomes quite disillusioned with their meager existence, and takes drastic measures. Good movie! Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
8
KenGJan 22, 2005
Intriguing portrait of a man going from loser to madness, with excellent performance by Penn.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
8
MarkB.Feb 3, 2005
It would be perfectly natural to walk into this highly fictionalized supposition of the miserable life of Sam Byck (spelled Bicke in the movie), who did indeed attempt a bizarre, inevitably futile attck on President Nixon in 1974, as a It would be perfectly natural to walk into this highly fictionalized supposition of the miserable life of Sam Byck (spelled Bicke in the movie), who did indeed attempt a bizarre, inevitably futile attck on President Nixon in 1974, as a parallel commentary on the growing resentment of Americans disenfranchised by the policies (and apparent invincibility) of the current Chief Executive--especially considering Sean Penn's involvement in the project. Perfectly natural, yes...but completely wrong. I think poster Steven M. has a point, even though I obviously regarded the film much higher than he did; Bicke's personal failures and growing psychosis are so deeply rooted within himself that he would inevitably have exploded no matter who was in the White House. It's just as easy to see Bicke endlessly watching the wall-to-wall TV coverage of the legal and ethical tribulations of another highly controversial U. S. President: Bicke's frustrations over his inability to keep his marriage together could find expression in revenge against a certain politician for being able to commit numerous infidelities and STILL keep his wife, and the film would play just as well as The Assassination of Bill Clinton. There's no question that Bicke's take on reality, which is pretty tenuous at the outset, becomes completely nonexistent by the time he commits his signature act. Not only does he have a hugely distorted perspective on how he comes across in interview situations (which, of course, is absolutely fatal in his profession as a salesman) but he's unable to recall whether he and his wife have been seperated for one year or two, and he endlessly rants about her cocktail waitress uniform, which is silly but rather modest by 2004 OR 1974 standards...especially if you saw actress Naomi Watts's wardrobe in I Heart Huckabees! Yet Bicke, as flawlessly played by Penn, is still a deeply tragic figure. With all his flaws, this failed appliance salesman is still a far better, infinitely more decent human being than his swinish, hypocritical boss (played with perfect piggishness by Jack Thompson). I mean, I've read the Dale Carnegie and Norman Vincent Peale books discussed in the movie that were bibles of salesmanship in those days, and nowhere but nowhere did Carnegie or Peale ever advocate using their techniques to lie to or cheat people. Much has been made of this film's apparently deliberate parallels to Taxi Driver (down to the respelling of the protagonist's name) minus the ironic third-act slaughterfest that transformed Martin Scorsese's seminal classic from a moody art film to a dependable second feature at inner-city "action houses" and drive-ins in the late 1970s. I'm more inclined to compare director Niels Mueller's work to that of Todd Solondz; like Welcome to the Dollhouse and Happiness, Assassination is often very darkly funny but just as often (and I think, intentionally) so uncomfortable to watch that you want it to have a shorter running time than it does. Solondz's misfit heroines Dawn in Dollhouse and Joy in Happiness are heartbreaking because they endure abuse after abuse which they more or less passively undergo; Bicke, being male, attempts time after time to overcome until he totally, irreparably breaks. I know this wasn't really Solondz's intention, and I'm not sure it's Mueller's, but my emotional response to all three films is to treat everybody I know with greater kindness: the geeky, uncoordinated coworker; the loud, overbearing neighbor; the odd, awkward stranger I share a sidewalk or a bus with. Who knows? As Assassination vividly demonstrates, doing so could actually end up saving a few lives I don't even know about! Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
9
JustinL.Feb 12, 2005
Intriguing and disturbing portrait of an already insane man falling deeper and deeper into the depths of his altered perception of the world around him. Although, Penn does seem to play the same character (disturbed man) in a lot of his Intriguing and disturbing portrait of an already insane man falling deeper and deeper into the depths of his altered perception of the world around him. Although, Penn does seem to play the same character (disturbed man) in a lot of his movies, the compelling performance in this film made it stand out and well worth watching. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful