Boogie Man: The Lee Atwater Story

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Boogie Man: The Lee Atwater Story
Boogie Man Promotional Poster.jpg
Directed by Stefan Forbes
Starring Eric Alterman
Distributed by Interpositive Media LLC
Release date(s) September 26, 2008
Running time 86 mins
Country United States
Language English

Boogie Man: The Lee Atwater Story is a 2008 U.S. documentary on the campaign tactics used by Lee Atwater while working on the George H.W. Bush 1988 presidential campaign, and how those tactics have transformed presidential campaigns in the United States.

In an independent release from InterPositive Media, the film was a Critic's Pick in both the New York Times and Washington Post, screened at the 2008 Democratic and Republican National Conventions, played 40 American cities in the fall of 2008 and was #7 in nationwide per-screen average the weekend of its release. It has been called one of the best political documentaries ever made[citation needed].

Movie name[edit]

The term Boogie Man in the documentary's title is a triple entendre that refers to

  • the fear that Atwater evoked in his political enemies (Mary Matalin is shown in the film using the term to describe Atwater's reputation among his Democratic opponents).
  • the use that Atwater made of Willie Horton (who was born the same year and lived in the same state as Atwater) to inspire fear of Michael Dukakis during the 1988 presidential campaign
  • Atwater's love of boogie music, especially playing blues guitar.

Critical reception[edit]

The film won the national Edward R. Murrow Award, a 2009 Polk Award for Excellence in Journalism, won the Chris Award at the Columbus International Film & Video Festival, was nominated for the WGA Award for Best Theatrical Documentary, and director Stefan Forbes received the Emerging Filmmaker Award from the International Documentary Association. Conservatives have charged the film contains left-wing bias.[1]

Other releases[edit]

The documentary was retitled as Dirty Tricks: The Man Who Got the Bushes Elected when it was broadcast in the United Kingdom on BBC Four.[2] When broadcast in Sweden on SVT (the national public service broadcaster), the film was retitled Amerikas ondaste man ("America's Evilest Man").[3]

On November 11, 2008, the PBS series Frontline broadcast a slightly shortened version of the documentary.

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0608/11316.html Atwater Doc Makes Conservatives Groan
  2. ^ "Dirty Tricks: The Man Who Got the Bushes Elected". Storyville. BBC. 2008-10-06. Retrieved 2008-10-13. 
  3. ^ "Amerikas ondaste man". SVT Dokumentär. SVT. Retrieved 2008-11-09. 

External links[edit]

General
Reviews
Interviews with film director Stefan Forbes