July 20, 2016
HONOLULU, HAWAI‘I—In the midst of one of the most dramatic, polarizing, high-stakes election seasons in history, the Honolulu Museum of Art presents a slate of political satires, documentaries, and Hollywood classics that delve into the political process, from filibustering to back-room handshake deals to hubris-fueled falls from grace.
Exactly one week before America decides whether to vote His Orangishness into office, the Doris Duke Theatre screens the 2011 documentary You've Been Trumped. The film tells the story of the billionaire real-estate tycoon's attempt to turn a protected Scottish wilderness into a luxury resort and golf course.
Some things never change. The stories told in the Hollywood classics Mr. Smith Goes to Washington and The Candidate are as relevant today as they were at the time they were produced. Both films tell the story of idealistic politicians who enter the political process with lofty ambitions, only to realize that changing the system is not as easy as they thought.
The intense new
documentary Weiner (pictured above) examines one of
the biggest political train wrecks in recent memory:
Anthony Weiner. The film follows the former New York congressman, fresh off of
his sexting debacle, as he inexplicably attempts to mount a campaign to become
mayor of New York City. Audiences will cringe, but won’t be able to look away.
In June 2016, Hawai‘i became the first U.S. state to place firearm-owning residents in a federal criminal record database. Aug. 9 the museum presents Under the Gun narrated by Katie Couric. The documentary examines the ongoing political debate over gun control, and what leads to political inaction even as the frequency of mass shootings increases at a terrifying rate. Audiences can join local policy makers for a post-screening discussion addressing gun control in Hawai‘i.
Register to vote
The Doris Duke Theatre will have voter registration forms available during the screenings. Audiences are encouraged to register and perform their civic duty come election day, Nov. 8.
Directed by Josh Kriegman and Elyse Steinberg. 2016. USA. 100 min.
August 2 at 1 p.m. + 7:30 p.m.
August 3 at 1 p.m. + 7:30 p.m.
August 6 at 1 p.m.
Sexts, lies, and Carlos Danger—watch the wildest political meltdown in recent history as it unfolds. It’s 2013 and former congressman Anthony Weiner—still reeling from the sex scandal that ended his political career two years earlier—is back in the spotlight as he mounts an audacious comeback campaign—to become mayor of New York City. But it’s not long before the onetime rising political star self-destructs—again. Granted unfettered access to the candidate and his campaign, filmmakers Josh Kriegman (a former Weiner aide) and Elyse Steinberg capture a jaw-dropping, behind-the-scenes look at the disintegration of a political machine. The New York Times, which calls Weiner a “rivetingly watchable documentary,” make the film a Critics’ Pick.
Winner of the 2016 Sundance Grand Jury Prize for U.S. Documentary.
See the trailer
Read the Variety review
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
Directed by Frank Capra. 1939. USA. 129 min.
August 4 at 1 p.m. + 7:30 p.m.
This screen gem is the To Kill A Mockingbird of politics—if To Kill a Mockingbird was a comedy—preserving viewers’ faith in democracy (as if that ever really existed). James Stewart is the idealistic young Jefferson Smith, a Boy Rangers leader who is appointed by the governor to fill a senate seat left vacant by a death. At the Capitol, Smith comes under the mentorship of senior Sen. Joseph Paine (Claude Rains). However, Paine isn't as noble as his reputation would indicate, and Smith’s plans promptly collide with political corruption. Determined to stand up against his corrupt peers, Smith takes his case to the Senate floor for a filibuster—one of the great scenes of American cinema. Back in 1939, the film caused a stir in Washington, D.C., reports the Washington Post: “The Washington Press Club sponsored a premiere at Constitution Hall that was attended by congressmen, Senators and Supreme Court justices. About halfway through the film, people started walking out. At another dinner, Capra was criticized for showing graft in the Senate. The Washington press corps, who didn't like the way reporters were portrayed, joined in the attacks against Capra.” But like Capra’s good-guy winners, the film triumphed—audiences flocked to see it, making Stewart a star, and earning 11 Oscar nominations, including Best Picture. What film took the title that year? Gone With the Wind.
It’s a great opportunity for audiences to see on the big screen the film that almost 80 years after it was released remains the standard bearer of Washington-related films.
Read the New York Times review
Under the Gun
Directed by Stephanie Soechtig. Narrated by Katie Couric. 2015. USA.
August 9 at 6:30 p.m.
Under the Gun examines the events and people who have kept the gun debate fierce and the legislative progress slow, even as gun deaths and mass shootings continue to increase. Through the lens of families impacted by the mass shootings in Newtown, Aurora, Isla Vista and Tucson, as well as those who experience daily gun violence in Chicago, the documentary looks at why politicians find it difficult to act and what is being done at the state and local levels. The film is executive produced and narrated by Katie Couric.
In June 2016, Hawai‘i became the first U.S. state to place firearm-owning residents in a federal criminal record database. Join us for a post-screening discussion with local policy makers to address questions of gun control in Hawai‘i.
Read the Variety Review
Directed by Alexander Payne. 1999. USA. 105 min.
November 3 at 1 p.m. + 7:30 p.m.
Twelve years before he made The Descendants, Alexander Payne turned his insightful eye to high school student body campaigns in this brilliant satire of the American electoral process that made the character Tracy Flick a household name. Matthew Broderick plays a high school teacher whose personal life becomes complicated as he works with students during the school elections, particularly with aspiring student body president Flick, an obsessive overachiever played by Reese Witherspoon. You may be laughing in despair in light of our real-life election.
Watch the trailer
Read the New York Times review
You’ve Been Trumped
Directed by Anthony Baxter. 2011. USA. 95 min. Nov 1 at 1pm + 7:30pm
Called a “riveting expose” by New York Magazine, this documentary captures the cultural chasm between the glitzed-out developer-cum-presidential candidate Donald Trump and a deeply rooted Scottish community in his attempt to turn protected wilderness into a luxury resort and golf course. What begins as an often amusing clash of world-views grows increasingly bitter and disturbing. Funny, inspiring and heartbreaking in turns, You’ve Been Trumped was viewed as an entertaining parable for our celebrity driven times when it was released in 2011. Today it can be viewed as a sobering warning to Trump supporters who believe he can #makeAmericagreatagain.
Read the New York Times review
I Am JFK Jr. – A Tribute to a Good Man
Directed by Derik Murray. 2016. USA. 92 min.
Nov 2 at 1pm + 7:30pm
John F. Kennedy Jr., the devastatingly handsome son of America’s most glamorous president and society style icon Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, was the closest thing the U.S. had to a prince. The country mourned his untimely death at 38 as if it had lost a great leader and statesman, when in fact he struggled to pass the bar, and his magazine George was starting to slump. In the anniversary month of his tragic passing comes an intimate, revealing and poignant look at his life in and out of the spotlight. Network Entertainment and Spike TV delve into the compelling life of “John John” through the distinctive lens of many of the people who knew him best, from A-list celebrities to close friends and staffers who worked closely with him at George magazine, in the original documentary film, I Am JFK Jr.
Directed by Michael Ritchie. 1972. USA. 110 min.
November 4 at 1 p.m. + 7:30 p.m.
Robert Redford is pitch perfect as Bill McKay, a young liberal California Democrat who campaigns for the United States Senate. To raise his standing in the polls, his original platform is continuously watered down in this scathing satire about how campaigns and elections can easily become corrupted. Though it’s labeled a political comedy, there are scenes that are as chilling as any psychological thriller, as when Melvyn Douglas, playing McKay’s father, tells him, “Son, you’re a politician,” following McKay’s victory, and lets out an evil chuckle. And in the final scene, McKay, achingly handsome and bewildered, asks his campaign manager (played beautifully by Peter Boyle), “What do we do now?” It’s as spine tingling as the last scene of The Omen. The horror, the horror.
Read the New York Times review
Doris Duke Theatre information:
The Doris Duke Theatre opens its doors on Kina‘u Street one half-hour before each film screening and concert.
Concert tickets: Available at the theater door on the day of the concert, beginning on half-hour before the performance, or online in advance.
Concert admission: Varies; free for children 17 and under
Film tickets: Available at the theater door on the day of screening, beginning one half-hour before each showing, or online in advance.
Film admission: $10 general admission; $8 museum members; free for children 17 and under
Matinee Rewards Card: Pick one up at the theater box office. When theatergoers attend three matinees, they receive free admission to a fourth screening. Or they can bring three friends to a single matinee and receive free admission to a future screening. The free screening pass is valid for three months.
Concession stand: In the lobby, visitors can purchase bags of glazed pecans, coconut ginger, chocolate- and Kona coffee–coated macadamia nuts, and butter crunch vanilla macadamia nuts, for $6 per bag. Also on the menu are handmade desserts and baked goods from Yummy Tummy, including peanut butter-oats-and-cranberry energy balls, green tea rice crispy treats and mini cookies ($3-$7). Drinks: coffee, hot tea, Arizona Green Tea, Vitamin Water, and bottled water ($2-$3).
One of the world’s premier art museums, the Honolulu Museum of Art presents international caliber special exhibitions and features a collection that includes Hokusai, van Gogh, Gauguin, Monet, Picasso and Warhol, as well as traditional Asian and Hawaiian art.
Located in two of Honolulu’s most beautiful buildings, visitors enjoy two cafés, gardens, and films and concerts at the theater. The museum is dedicated to bringing together great art and people to create a more harmonious, adaptable, and enjoyable society in Hawai’i.
Honolulu Museum of Art: 900 S. Beretania Street
Honolulu Museum of Art Spalding House: 2411 Makiki Heights Drive
Honolulu Museum of Art School: 1111 Victoria Street
Honolulu Museum of Art at First Hawaiian Center: 999 Bishop Street
Honolulu Museum of Art Doris Duke Theatre: 901 Kinau Street (at rear of museum)
Honolulu Museum of Art: Tues–Sat 10 am–4:30pm; Sun 1–5 pm; closed Monday.
Honolulu Museum of Art Spalding House: Tues–Sat 10am–4pm; Sun noon–4pm
$10 general admission; children 17 and under are free.