Elvis & Nixon (2016) Review


Being marketed as the untold true story behind the meeting of Elvis Presley and President Richard Nixon. All brought about from the most requested photograph ever in the National Archives. Will we really ever know exactly what happened?


I remember first seeing the trailer for this film and wondering what on earth was going on and thinking it was just totally made up. Well, everything they say happens probably was but they did really meet in the White House.

The fact that Michael Shannon and Kevin Spacey were the two main characters for this film though really should make you want to see it. That certainly worked for me. I found Shannon to bring a great side to Elvis and Spacey was a massive surprise as Nixon how he had the body movements and accent down brilliantly.

It is a comedy film and not to be taken too seriously but I think it managed to mix that very well with the performances and events which took place in the film. So we follow Elvis on his mission to speak to Nixon face to face wanting to get crime down in the USA. It takes quite a long time to build up to the pair actually meeting as Elvis’ people and Nixon’s people really work hard to make it happen. Both groups have their own motives on why it would be a fantastic opportunity.

I found the film massively interesting as well as being strange at times. A good strange though as everything unfolded at a pretty slow pace, especially considering we knew the meeting was going to happen. Maybe we could have had slightly more of that together time.

The supporting cast members all managed to keep everything together and flowing. I could not help but think that Colin Hanks is sounding more and more like his father, a few times I could have sworn Tom Hanks had joined the cast as well. The other supporting actors especially Evan Peters and Alex Pettyfer I have seen recently in quite a few films, so good to see they are working on all different types of projects.

I have noticed in recent times that I enjoy films that have a lot of dialogue in them and I certainly think this fits into that type. I was very shocked to see two people leave the cinema screening I was in about half way though the film. Maybe it was just too quirky for them and not the Elvis they remember?

I am hoping that this film finds an audience as I don’t imagine it is going to generate anything big at the box office, considering we have entered the “big summer blockbusters” period. But with the bad press surrounding Independence Day then surely people should give this film a go instead. Shannon and Spacey what more do you possibly need?

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