Walker

  • 1987
  • Movie
  • R
  • Historical, War

Reviled by the vast majority of American film critics, this distinctly odd, at times confused, but nonetheless wildly creative and compelling political cartoon from SID AND NANCY director Alex Cox is far from a total washout. An agitprop treatise on the United States' ongoing military intrusions into Nicaragua, Cox's film examines the problem by dramatizing...read more

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Reviled by the vast majority of American film critics, this distinctly odd, at times confused, but nonetheless wildly creative and compelling political cartoon from SID AND NANCY director Alex Cox is far from a total washout. An agitprop treatise on the United States' ongoing military

intrusions into Nicaragua, Cox's film examines the problem by dramatizing the career of William Walker, a bizarre historical figure who has been all but forgotten in the US but who continues to serve as a vivid symbol of Yankee oppression for the people of Central America. Instead of presenting

WALKER in generic historical epic fashion, Cox and screenwriter Rudy Wurlitzer provide a strange hodgepodge of past and present, inserting such anachronisms as modern slang, a computer, a Mercedes-Benz, People magazines, and even a helicopter during key moments in the film. The result is a truly

unique movie universe where all history takes place in a discontinuous time warp. The film follows Walker (played with manic intensity by Ed Harris) as he decides to bring democracy to the heathens in Nicaragua. Assembling a rag-tag group of mercenaries, Walker invades Nicaragua with the support

of that country's Liberal party, defeats the army, and sets up a puppet government. Eventually he assumes the presidency, only to have his own men and sponsor, Cornelius Vanderbilt (Peter Boyle), turn on him. What makes WALKER so fascinating is its total refusal to play by anyone's

rules--cinematic or political. As unconventional as Cox's film is, it still succeeds in painting an interesting psychological portrait of William Walker, presenting him as a man whose fervent belief in the justice of his mission blinds him to his perversion of his own dearly held ideals. Cox is

both intrigued and repelled by this moral arrogance, and his lyrical treatment of violence, a la Peckinpah, may be an attempt to convey the seductive power of such righteousness. WALKER is not for all tastes, but it's a fascinating film nonetheless.

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  • Released: 1987
  • Rating: R
  • Review: Reviled by the vast majority of American film critics, this distinctly odd, at times confused, but nonetheless wildly creative and compelling political cartoon from SID AND NANCY director Alex Cox is far from a total washout. An agitprop treatise on the Un… (more)

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