If there’s one lesson that 2015, and indeed 2016, have in store for us, it’s that the world of politics is changing. A year ago, if you had told me that a certain reality TV star had a legitimate chance of becoming the President of the United States, I would have laughed at you like .
But now, the political future is uncertain, and so this is as good a time as any to take a look at some crazy and ridiculous political figures in movies, and be grateful that we don’t have to deal with them in real life.
President Cooper – Pixels (Kevin James)
Kevin James is essentially everything you don’t want the President to be. Well, maybe not everything, but he’s pretty close. His character in Pixels, U.S. President Cooper, is often insecure and undermined by those around him.
In addition, as Commander-in-Chief, he still hangs around with all his old childhood buddies on a daily basis, and allows Adam Sandler to just wander around the White House without any kind of security clearance.
Sure, the guy might have a soft spot for retro video games, as we all do. But old-school gaming skills will only get you so far, and unless the earth is actually invaded by giant, Galaga-playing aliens, President Cooper may not be the President you want in office.
Abraham Lincoln – Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter (Benjamin Walker)
Let’s go from a sub-par president to an epic one. In this historically accurate account of the assassination of hordes of vampires. the most talented and brutal undead slayer of them all is Honest Abe himself.
Abraham Lincoln is known for his opposition to slavery, his beard, and his untimely assassination. But above all these things, President Lincoln was, first and foremost, a protector of the United States. Whether the country needed protecting from foreign assets, threats from within, or throngs of demonic blood-suckers, Abe got the job done.
Vampire Hunter may not be one of the greatest films ever made, but it has some pretty cool action scenes, and honestly, who can resist the premise of Abe Lincoln slaughtering armies of gothic villains?
Kim Jong-un – The Interview (Randall Park)
The Interview, though not an overwhelmingly great, or even funny, film, will go down in history as one of the greatest film controversies of all time. From its massive advertising campaign to the threats of terrorism upon its release, The Interview is one of a kind.
Making light of the fact that western civilization knows very little regarding the goings-on within North Korea, The Interview paints Kim Jong-un not just as a radical dictator, but as a partier, a masochist, and the world’s greatest Katy Perry fan.
Randall Park’s portrayal of Kim Jong-un is perhaps the best part of the film, aside from the opening Eminem interview. Maybe it’s because he looked so much like the North Korean Supreme Leader, or maybe it’s thanks to his comedic timing. But baby, he’s a firework.
The U.S. President – Love Actually (Billy Bob Thornton)
Slimeball. Douchebag. Asshat. Any of these words perfectly describe Billy Bob Thornton’s U.S. President from Love Actually, who is, actually, so much of an A-hole that he doesn’t even get a proper name.
The President makes some untoward advances aimed at Natalie, the British Prime Minister’s secret love interest. The role is a small one, but plays a large part in the narrative of the movie. The President’s actions drive a wedge between him and the Prime Minister, and if Love Actually weren’t a romantic comedy, the two nations would probably go to war over a simple housekeeper.
So, note to self: If I ever become President, don’t hit on the Prime Minister’s girl. Luckily for Billy Bob, everything turned out okay in the end.
Adam Sutler – V for Vendetta (John Hurt)
Perhaps the most interesting politician on this list, Adam Sutler, from V for Vendetta is fascinating. His paranoid ideologies cause him to seek for absolute control over every aspect of the lives of his people.
Frighteningly, this may not seem like a fantasy anymore. Between mass surveillance and paranoia, many of the world’s government leaders could potentially inch closer and closer to Sutler’s point of view. And for a guy who’s surname is definitely supposed to sound like Hitler, Sutler probably isn’t someone worth emulating.
Sutler seeks for a Big Brother-esque society similar to the one in George Orwell’s 1984. And interestingly enough, John Hurt, who plays the villain in V for Vendetta, plays the hero in the film adaptation of 1984. Looks like he’s come full circle.
President Hathaway – Monsters vs. Aliens (Stephen Colbert)
Let’s lighten the mood a bit. President Hathaway has all the trappings of a great leader. He’s confident, powerful, has some serious swagger, and best of all, he’s voiced by Stephen Colbert.
Hathaway is only in a handful of scenes, but they stand out from the rest of the movie due to their sheer hilarity. Maybe the President is screaming like a small child, or maybe he’s rocking out with a spot-on rendition of “Axel F” in an attempt to communicate with a dangerous alien race. But whatever he’s doing, you can bet it’ll be funny.
Kim Jong-il – Team America: World Police (Trey Parker)
Remember the good old days when you could make an extremely racist and politically charged puppetry film and receive next to no backlash for it? Trey Parker and Matt Stone probably do.
Team America did the North Korea parody long before The Interview did, and they did it in a much more creative, insulting, and xenophobic manner. But that doesn’t mean it’s not hilarious.
Sure, the now deceased North Korean leader may be brutal, sadistic, and foul mouths. But he, like all of us, just gets a little lonely sometimes and needs some love and understanding. And if he has to take over the world to get that love and understanding, then so be it.
Who are your favorite political figures in film? Do you agree with our list? Is there someone else you would add to it? Let us know in the comments!