Sarah Palin, Flawless, in The Undefeated

“You missed the beginning where everybody’s cussin’ about her,” the volunteer at the table outside the “leaders only” screening of the new Sarah Palin documentary, The Undefeated, told me last month, shaking his head in disbelief. “It’s pretty harsh.”

That’s about the only harshness you’ll find in the The Undefeated, which opens this week in select cities but not New York, and was made by director Stephen K. Bannon without Sarah Palin’s direct participation but with her clear blessing. The film uses significant portions from the audiobook of her memoir Going Rogue as voiceover, and when it debuted in Pella, Iowa, in June, she and her husband, Todd, attended the festivities. The movie, which charts her career as mayor of Wasilla and governor of Alaska, is less a documentary than a glowing two-hour infomercial for Sarah Palin, Presidential Candidate To-Be.

The purpose of The Undefeated, basically, is for people who currently work for Palin, or have in the past, to talk about her achievements and to bash her foes, who are cast as what one talking head calls “an uprising of hatred” against Palin. The former governor’s arguments with her detractors are described in the movie as “a spiritual battle.” She’s no longer just the folksy-aphorism-usin’ hockey mom of 2008—the film elevates her to nothing less than a fighter in a holy war, a lone holdout against the encroaching forces of darkness. “Are you ready to fight for your freedoms?” she is seen asking a roaring crowd last year. “OH YEAH!” shouted the guy behind me.

Bannon depicts Palin’s opponents as comic-book villains: sinister politicians in smoke-filled back rooms (Frank Murkowski, who lost to Palin in the 2002 gubernatorial primary); sexist, caddish news anchors (Chris Matthews); and bitter, unfulfilled feminists threatened by her flawless family life (referenced in generalization, but not by name), all united by their “hateful obsession” with Tearing Sarah Down. This cartoonish version of real life is paired with a just-as-caricatured view of Palin, who in this retelling is entirely without blemish, physical or political, and incapable of missteps. (Even the film’s title is a whitewashing—she was, in fact, The Defeated as John McCain’s running mate.)

While imparting no new insight, the film spends a numbing amount of time on every detail of Palin’s early career, but fades into fuzziness as it approaches the present day. One could argue, I suppose, that we all already know about present-day Palin, so better to learn about what kind of oil and gas commissioner she was in order to understand what kind of president she’ll make. But that’s not what’s driving Bannon here. Rather, The Undefeated is in love with the idea of Sarah Palin as an outsider and an upstart, so it doesn’t quite know how to talk about her growing fame and influence. This presents a curious situation (reminiscent of George W. Bush’s campaign, actually) in which a woman who has been in politics for close to 20 years, and who has served as a city councilor, mayor, governor, and vice-presidential candidate, is still described repeatedly as the “un-politician.”

By the film’s closing credits, we still have no clearer or more realistic picture of one of the most divisive, talked-about figures in national politics. In one stump speech shown near the end of The Undefeated, Palin exclaims brightly, “There’s nothing wrong in America a good ol’-fashioned election can’t fix!” That’s about as honest as this piece of propaganda.

 
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35 comments
Timoteo
Timoteo

When she falters against Romney or Bachmann in the primaries, that will be the end of her political career, and she'll have to reinvent herself. Maybe she could be the new Wonder Woman, since she's so perfect!

morrisminor
morrisminor

The Palindrones always seem to end up promoting their esteemed leader by putting everyone else down

David Orbach
David Orbach

Right. The tactic is not to correct or refute any criticism, but to answer by accusation. "What about Ted Kennedy, Carter, Clinton, Hillary, Obama . . . " Kind of like the way a grade schooler would argue.

morrisminor
morrisminor

That was really crude, illogical and just plain stupid, a perfect example of the way the conservative base thinks! Scary?

Dandykstra
Dandykstra

Sarah's the savior of America? Yeah. Oh, and while we're at it, the world is flat, the sun revolves around the earth, and if you take my photograph, you'll steal my soul.

Bob from Arizona
Bob from Arizona

“There’s nothing wrong in America a good ol’-fashioned election can’t fix!” That’s about as honest as this piece of propaganda.

Try "Yes We Can"...LOL you probably bought that one. "I'm not president bush". Now look who has got us in 4 wars and has tanked the economy, We could only wish to have at good as bush left it.

But he's so smart and so a stud for killing Osama.......What a bunch of Obama Zombies. Go back to sleep you sheep.

Bobby Smackfish
Bobby Smackfish

"We could only wish to have at good as bush left it"

You mean Clinton surely? Remember? No wars and a budget surplus? Good thing republicans chased him out of office and those millionaires got their tax cuts while the country fell to pieces.

morrisminor
morrisminor

Wow, a right wing zombie from Arizona just remembered how to post on the net with just his brain stem working. Duh, Obama got us into 4 wars? Got any more stupid lies? If you don't, you need to find Palin and get some more.

Chris
Chris

This type of reaction shows everything that is wrong with Palin and her supporters.

Keep up the good fight, bro! Help us ensure Obama 2012! Every time you speak, you help the cause.

Consumer Unit 5012
Consumer Unit 5012

So, they made a movie out of this?http://fafblog.blogspot.com/20...

I think it's hilarious the way the same people who idolize Palin and await the Second Coming of Ronnie to save this country accuse _liberals_ of being the ones with the "cult of personality".

LedZeppelin
LedZeppelin

There's a lady who's sure all that glitters is goldAnd she's buying a stairway to heavenWhen she gets there she knows, if the stores are all closedWith a word she can get what she came forOoh, ooh, and she's buying a stairway to heaven

There's a sign on the wall but she wants to be sure'Cause you know sometimes words have two meaningsIn a tree by the brook, there's a songbird who singsSometimes all of our thoughts are misleadingOoh, it makes me wonderOoh, it makes me wonder

Guest
Guest

Mind Numbingly Ignorant,

This film shows the petty narcissism of the woman who wants to be the queen. It stars not only Caribou Barbie, but Andrew Breitbart who brought the fake, edited ACORN videos, the edited and misleading Shirley Sherrod videos to Fox News who fed the right wing masses lies and deception. The movie is all about the cult of Sarah, filled with sound bites and cheers from her base of white right wing conservatives. I hoped the movie would include Mrs Palin getting blessed against witches from Rev Muthee, but for some reason it was not included. If you want to be fed lies, bigotry and hatred disguised as patriotism, bring a barf bag.The theater will be mostly empty so you can hear the crickets in Palin's mind.I thought they would offer free diapers for any teen girls who joined Bristol's abstinence club.

PhilipJames
PhilipJames

Look, you liberal jerk skank... you live in your bubble of idiocy, where feminism is simply and only existant in support of abortion, the simplistic birth control system for skanks like you.You have no clue about who Sarah Palin is and what she represents... which is over 70% of the American population. Your niche group is ignorant of those 70% but still thinks it is the one that really matters. It doesn't. It is disposable, just as you are. Your existence is only valuable in your own mind.

Chris
Chris

I'm gonna like this post because... honestly? What's not to like? It's perfectly ridiculous.

JenInBoston
JenInBoston

PhilipJames, do you really think that 30% of your fellow Americans are "disposable"? That probably makes you a psychopath, and it definitely makes you un-American. What a disgusting belief to hold! Let me guess; you go around thinking that you believe in the dignity of all human life and the fundamental equality of people, right? Sure, except for the 90-million humans you wish to dispose of. Actually, it's probably over 100-million you'd like to execute, isn't it? I mean, it's probably safe to assume that you lump all "illegals" into the same batch of sub-human air-wasters, with whom you're forced to suffer through life.

By the way, your figures are off-base. They're inverted. Palin accurately represents around 30% of Americans, not 70% (and to be clear, you're NOT among the people Palin represents; if she ever met a person like you and heard them say that liberals are disposable, she would not possibly want to be anywhere near you. Ever. You may love her, but you would doubtless be despicable to her). Among Republicans polled by Gallup this week ( http://www.gallup.com/poll/148... ), only 25% held a "strongly favorable" view of Palin. With a country divided about 50-50 politically, that means that around a maximum of 13% of Americans have a highly favorable view of her. And with over 95% name recognition in American polls of both parties, this 25% rating isn't due simply to poll-takers' unfamiliarity with her. The fact is, while tens of millions utterly adore her, as a percentage of the US population, they are small minority.

Guest
Guest

hah! you're a joke.

Scary
Scary

That's pretty scary.

Dikup Yerass
Dikup Yerass

Your comment is the best satire I've read all day!!!

David Orbach
David Orbach

I just want to know where that 70% figure comes from. Extreme Right Wing Highlights or perhaps Fundamentalist Weekly Reader?

silverfeather
silverfeather

I saw the film in Orlando. It was very interesting and was very detailed about her early life in Alaska politics. I came away from the movie with a new appreciation for Sarah Palin and her absolute qualifications to run for President. She is more experienced in governing than people give her credit for. I think she will make a wonderful President. I hope she runs.

Guest
Guest

I like you, silverfeather. You're funny!

Anon
Anon

Is that you, Stephen?

DrLearnALot
DrLearnALot

John McCain was tortured for his country. This is him paying us back by bringing forth this caricature to torment us for eternity.

Enmach
Enmach

Sorry, spinboys, can't muster to hatin' on her. She might make a highly entertaining nextdoor neighbor, but effective VeeP or POTUS? Uh, no.

Junior Samples
Junior Samples

Mainstream Media Is Not Reporting On Incredible Trend in Palin Poll Numbershttp://www.freerepublic.com/fo...

POLL: Palin, Romney Take Lead Among Iowa Conservatives As Early Race Tightenshttp://www.freerepublic.com/fo...

If Sarah Palin Gets in the Race, She Will be the Candidate to Beathttp://www.freerepublic.com/fo...

Jobs Report: OK, Now You Can Panichttp://www.freerepublic.com/fo...

Palin can ‘snap her fingers’ for money, run and beat Obama, warns GOP experthttp://www.freerepublic.com/fo...

wendy
wendy

Hey -- if Alaska_VIP is correct, a whole new career direction opens for Palin in motion pictures. This might be her logical set point.

Lynn Braddy
Lynn Braddy

Fairhenheit 911 was the biggest piece of propaganda tripe ever made and of coyrse the libs went gaga over it.

David Orbach
David Orbach

Maybe yes, maybe no, but that has nothing to do with this review, or its subject.

Stoneyjack
Stoneyjack

"The Undefeated" is a powerful, revealing, astonishing, fascinating portrayal of the life & career of the most interesting, exciting, and attractive woman in modern American history: Sarah Louise Heath Palin. Sarah looks wonderful on the big screen, In fact, she displays more charisma, physical beauty, seductive allure, and natural talent than any actress in motion picture history.

Budbear
Budbear

Stoney sounds pretty cranked up... Wash your hands when you're finished, bud.

Matthew
Matthew

Stoney....better put that bong down dude.

Benspapi2
Benspapi2

I thought she was wonderful in Nailin' Pailin.

Brandt Hardin
Brandt Hardin

This film is simply another publicity stunt to make Palin what she really wants…. not the presidency, but cold hard CASH. Palin is for $ale and is making it rich on your dime with every book, speaking engagement, and movie ticket that markets her image and sells her looks (it’s certainly not her choice of words which got her this far.) Just watch her rolling in the money with an indecent proposal on my artist’s blog at http://dregstudiosart.blogspot...

 

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