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Mr. Peel

I love Ishtar as well and could also sing any of the songs (badly) at the drop of a hat, but it's not without problems. The first half-hour is best and I guess I'd love to see the alternate-universe version where the whole thing is set in New York.

Bulworth is flat-out brilliant. Period. It also works great when paired on a double-bill with Shampoo. I'd definitely always going to think of the phrase "Telling the truth is dangerous business" in relation to these movies now.


I wish I looked about a quarter as good now (I'm 33) as Beatty looks at 70. Hell, I wish I looked half as good when I was 22 as Beatty looks now.

Ishtar's financial disappointment and rumors about May's overbudget spending (though it is no longer that notable a financial loss among various other disasters since then) seemed to have far outweighed any actual viewing back then of the film. I'm not sure why people were supposed to be interested in Columbia's level of profitability, but apparently they were.

Ishtar's quite funny (especially so for the mid-Eighties) in a way that was unusual at that moment. The rather black satire on international politics actually seems more current now than in 1987.

Joe Valdez

I don't agree with you, Kim, but I loved your article. I watched "Shampoo" recently and felt it was too intellectually stuffy for me. I had the same reaction to "Bulworth". For me, those flicks are not at all fun to watch, but your defense of them was quite admirable.


Great article but you always get me caught off guard. Now there is another two movies I need to add to the old queue, which is getting far too long these days. Can't wait for the next odd and enlightening article to read.

Jim 7

I always thought 'Bulworth' was one of the bravest movies I've ever seen.

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