Dave and the I’m Not One Of Your Bimbos Moment

The One-Line Summary: When the president of the Unites States is incapacitated by a compromising situation, White House Chief of Staff Bob Alexander (Frank Langella) and Communications Director Alan Reed (Kevin Dunn) convince an impersonator, and near identical twin to the President, named Dave (Kevin Kline) to step up and serve his country by pretending to the leader of the free world without telling anyone the truth, including the First Lady.

Warner Bros.
Warner Bros.

The Two-Line Blurb: Directed by Ivan Reitman, Dave is a take-no-risks comedy that is still very effective and delivers a highly satisfying story, implausible as it is, sold entirely by the great cast, including Sigourney Weaver, Ving Rhames, Charles Grodin and especially Kline who never let the premise get away from them, firmly maintaining the fantasy throughout. While the film flatly refuses to challenge the viewer and tackle anything of real importance, the plot is not about politics but rather relationships and takes joy in toying with the romantic comedy conventions in the unique setting.

The Three-Line Set-up: This moment is all about discovery and begins when Dave is asked again by the White House to stand in for the President after a very convincing performance earlier where he not only sold himself as the current Commander in Chief, but reveled in the role. Desperate and out of options, conniving Chief of Staff Alexander sees the opportunity of having a puppet President to advance his own agenda, though he’s met with resistance not only from Reed but Dave himself, who learns that while he is in the big chair, he truly has the power. To this point, it’s been mostly easy convincing the staff and the world that Dave is actually the real President, though his naturally jovial attitude differs greatly from the usually stoic leader, but the last hurdle is the First Lady who has become estranged from her husband of late but recognizes the change in behavior and comes to inquire.

The Four-Line Moment: As the couple have not been intimate in years, keeping Dave out of sight of Ellen (Weaver) has been no trouble so far, but after Dave goes the extra mile at a children’s shelter and reveals a kindness not typically displayed, she gets curious. Seeing it as a political maneuver, Ellen storms into the President’s bathroom while Dave is in the shower, demanding to know his intentions, but when he turns around and exposes a part of him that makes him perhaps different from her husband, she notices but doesn’t quite understand, momentarily flummoxed. The moment is a great bit of comedy and showcases the excellent writing (by Gary Ross) and timing the two leads share. It’s from here where the film establishes the direction of the story and because of the fun in how it’s presented, hooks the audience for the rest of the ride.

The Five-Word Review: A great, feel good movie.

Clip courtesy Movieclips

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Director:

Ivan Reitman

Writer:

Gary Ross

 

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