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Silver City

  • compiled by Peter T. Chattaway Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2004 1 Jan
Silver City
from Film Forum, 09/23/04

Silver City, a limited-release film from John Sayles (Eight Men Out, Lone Star, Limbo), takes a satirical look at a gubernatorial campaign that revolves around a candidate named Dickie Pilager (Adaptation's Chris Cooper) who bears an uncanny resemblance to George W. Bush.

Chris Monroe (Christian Spotlight) takes issue with the film's political agenda and its treatment of religion. He writes, "One aspect of Dick Pilager resembling President George W. Bush that is brought out several times is his Christianity. … While Christianity itself isn't necessarily assaulted directly throughout the film, overall it really doesn't seem to be respected at all."

Mainstream critics are generally underwhelmed.

from Film Forum, 09/30/04

David DiCerto (Catholic News Service) writes, "Though well acted, the film, written and directed by John Sayles, tries to keep too many plates spinning—including subplots involving corporate corruption, government collusion with big business, environmentalism and illegal immigration—resulting in a somewhat jumbled narrative which never really decides what kind of a movie it wants to be: a sharp political satire or a neo-noir murder mystery a la Chinatown."

from Film Forum, 10/07/04

Andrew Coffin (World) says, "What a snooze! Silver City is the first narrative entry—describing it as fictional wouldn't really distinguish it from the 'documentaries' that preceded it—in the slate of anti-Bush propaganda hitting theaters in the run-up to November's election. And it proves that bad things happen when a capable filmmaker lets his ideological agenda get the better of him."