Movie Review: Roseanne for President!

roseanne for president 2In 2012, Roseanne Barr ran for president of the United States. Roseanne for President! follows the boisterous comedian on her campaign to become the President. The film is a look behind the curtain as she first attempts to run on the Green Party ticket after being recruited by Cynthia McKinney.

The film is honest and brutal in many ways as Roseanne pulls no punches in what she says or generally what she’s thinking. Barr came to the nation’s attention as the bold comedian who became a “working class hero” with her television show that become a hit.

The documentary discusses Barr’s legacy from that television show to her activism and it’s very eye opening. The movie talks to Barr, her family and friends, as well as her campaign manager Farheen, as it follows her on her unconventional nationwide campaign.

That’s interesting about the documentary is it shows Barr’s lack of seriousness about actually winning. She talks about a lot of issues, but you never get the sense she actually wants to win. Her message of ordinary people being heard and empowered though is generally ahead of its time in some ways in politics.

This is the next chapter in Roseanne’s life and for those who are interested in politics its a great documentary that shows some of the process of what it takes to win the nomination of a political party. There’s a lot that’s not shown about politics, but the absurdity of much of it is front and center.

Directed by Eric Weinrib, the film has to be applauded for its honesty and what it’s able to get out from its various subjects, but what’s more interesting in how it doesn’t seem to force any storylines. That’s helped by Barr’s rawness and willingness to say whatever’s on her mind.

The current election can only be described as a circus, but this documentary shows that there’s so much more that goes on and is a reminder that some of that circus began in 2012.

Roseanne for President! is a fascinating film that captures a fragment of the 2012 Presidential race with highs and lows and an honesty in and about politics that isn’t found often enough.

Overall Rating: 8.3

IFC Films provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review