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Man of the Year

Man of the Year

3.5 4
Director: Barry Levinson

Cast: Robin Williams, Laura Linney, Christopher Walken


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Good Morning, Vietnam duo Barry Levinson and Robin Williams re-team to tell the tale of a quick-witted radio talk-show host whose fanciful bid for the presidency becomes a surprising reality in the one political comedy that truly speaks for the people. When talk show host Tom Dobbs (Robin


Good Morning, Vietnam duo Barry Levinson and Robin Williams re-team to tell the tale of a quick-witted radio talk-show host whose fanciful bid for the presidency becomes a surprising reality in the one political comedy that truly speaks for the people. When talk show host Tom Dobbs (Robin Williams) makes an offhand comment that he would be a better president than the leader who currently occupies the White House, a grassroots campaign conducted by his legions of fans finds him unexpectedly ushered into the Oval Office and forced to live up to his promise. Unfortunately for Dobbs, the revelation that his surprise victory was actually the result of a voting computer glitch and not majority vote leaves the outspoken funnyman struggling with the decision to stay the course in the Oval Office or head back behind the microphone where he is truly in his element. Laura Linney, Christopher Walken, Jeff Goldblum, and Lewis Black co-star the satirical comedy scripted and directed by Levinson.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
Robin Williams supplies topical political humor in this diverting comedy written and directed by Barry Levinson (Wag the Dog). Williams stars as Tom Dobbs, host of a Daily Show-styled current affairs TV program that allows him to engage in satirical commentary. His halfhearted presidential campaign, undertaken mainly for laughs and publicity, produces an astounding result: He's elected to the nation's highest office. Stupefied by this turn of events, Tom assumes the presidency and, among other things, addresses the issue that put him there: a critical flaw in the new electronic voting system employed for this election. Christopher Walken and Lewis Black get their licks in as Dobbs’s showbiz colleagues, and Laura Linney plays the software analyst who discovers the voting machine glitch but is ignored by corporate bigwigs desperate to avoid a recall. Although Levinson deserves points for eschewing cheap-shot attacks on either liberals or conservatives, one senses that a bit more bite from either direction would have earned the film more fans. A modern twist on Frank Capra's Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Man of the Year finds Williams carefully toeing the line between his antic and more serious sides, which makes for interesting viewing, albeit not for the usual reasons.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Universal Studios
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]

Special Features

Robin Williams: A "Stand Up" Guy - Get a rare behind-the-scenes look at the hilarious improvisational genius of Robin Williams; Commander and Chief - Go on-set to see how acclaimed director Barry Levinson got the most hilarious performances out of his all-star cast

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Robin Williams Tom Dobbs
Laura Linney Eleanor Green
Christopher Walken Jack Menken
Lewis Black Eddie Langston
Jeff Goldblum Stewart
Rick Roberts Hemmings
David Alpay Danny
Karen Hines Alison McAndrews
Linda Kash Jenny Adams

Technical Credits
Barry Levinson Director,Screenwriter
Stefania Cella Production Designer
David Coatsworth Executive Producer
Blair Daily Editor
Joshu de Cartier Art Director
Pam Dixon Casting
Rob Fried Executive Producer
Myron Hoffert Asst. Director
Allan Mason Musical Direction/Supervision
Guy McElwaine Executive Producer
Laird McMurray Special Effects
Dick Pope Cinematographer
Graeme Revell Score Composer
David C. Robinson Executive Producer
James G. Robinson Producer
Robert F. Scherer Sound/Sound Designer
Steve Weisberg Editor
Delphine White Costumes/Costume Designer

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Man of the Year
1. Vote for Dobbs (Main Titles) [7:17]
2. It's No Joke [4:41]
3. Grass Roots Campaigning [6:22]
4. Heated Debate [8:46]
5. Candidate for Change [6:35]
6. The Electoral Process [8:57]
7. Keeping Quiet [3:35]
8. Making a Mess [3:56]
9. Impromptu Visit [3:38]
10. Staffing Up [5:13]
11. Strictly Confidential [5:15]
12. Being Forthright [:05]
13. Erroneous Decision [4:58]
14. Major Announcement [7:07]
15. Knock Em' Dead [5:39]
16. Preparatory Meeting [6:05]
17. Distress Call [8:13]
18. The Bottom Line [4:01]
19. Bigger Than Ever [7:26]
20. End Titles [2:24]


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Man of the Year 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I expected a light-hearted Robin Williams comedy. What I got was a drama that left half a dozen great actors stranded without anything to work with. Christopher Walken and Lewis Black could have added SO much to this film, but instead they were left in the background. This movie should not have been billed as a comedy. Yes, it did have comedic moments to it, but the main plot had to do with a glitch in the computer voting system and a coverup that left the woman who discovered it thinking she was insane. THIS MOVIE WAS NOT A COMEDY. Not by a long shot. I was really disappointed.
Guest More than 1 year ago
After a spate of roles that Robin Williams elected to play to prove he can be other than a funny guy, roles that were dark and foreboding, along comes the surprise film MAN OF THE YEAR and Williams has the opportunity to shine in both his unbridled comic banter and his more serious and even tender side. The film was marketed with a Thomas Jefferson cum George Washington wig atop Williams' head and for this viewer that was enough to avoid the film in theaters. But don't be fooled by that bit of chicanery and foolish choice of PR: this film has so much truth about our political system that it is a springboard for the best in comic writing. Tom Dobbs is a late night talk show host with a political slant (read Bill Maher type etc) who responds to an audience question 'Why don't you run for President?' by deciding to do so, much to the chagrin of this manager Jack Menken (Christopher Walken in a wonderfully underplayed role at last!) and writer Eddie Langston (Lewis Black). Dobbs is just fed up enough with the government being run by people who have to pay off the lobbyists that get them elected and the big corporate supporters and spend money on everything BUT the people they serve: he seems to be as likely a candidate as any - and the public via email and media support prove him correct. He debates as an Independent candidate with both the Democrat and Republican and wins the debate hands down. AND he is elected. But there is a problem: The new voting system is by a computer company run by Alan Stewart (Jeff Goldblum) and workers Eleanor Green (Laura Linney is a terrific role) and Danny (the hunky and fine David Alpay). Eleanor discovers a glitch in the computer program that reveals that Dobbs did not indeed win the election and the rest of the film is how she confronts Dobbs with the truth and how Dobbs and crew deal with it. Suffice it to say that Dobbs' manner of coping makes us wish that he indeed were the President! The cast is strong and for this viewer the fine balance between comedy and true drama that writer/director Barry Levinson achieves is not only the stuff of fine film making: it is also wise and should be viewed by a very wide audience. Robin Williams manages to be both his inimitable funny self as well as offer a touching three-dimensional performance of a citizen at odds with the current political system. And Laura Linney adds yet another fine role to her ever-increasing repertoire. Highly recommended. Grady Harp
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago