Weiner

A fascinating political documentary that arrives right on time after our own politicians’ machinations have been under such scrutiny. Weiner is the story of former Congress rising star yet bad boy Anthony Weiner whose career went on the skids after he was exposed sending lewd photos of himself and his underpants to ladies.

Nevertheless, Weiner, aware of the aptness of his name, regrouped two years later to run for New York Mayor and granted all-out access to these doc makers, Josh Kriegman and Elyse Steinberg, while he did so.

We watch him, both charismatic and unflagging in his pursuit of glory and power, dashing around Manhattan shaking hands and even DJing and toasting his black fans at a parade, using a vaguely Jamaican accent. He makes cheesy campaign videos in his kitchen, vowing to fight for the middle classes in New York. He and his wife Huma Adebin do a ring round of friends, begging for money pledges. It’s a very revealing insight to the process.

Plus, Weiner’s should be a made man – Bill Clinton officiated his wedding to the beautiful Huma, a loyal assistant to Hillary Clinton, who so loves her aide that she calls Huma her “second daughter.”

So Weiner, despite the silly name and the reputation which he has by now embraced and laughed off, looks set for a decent tilt at the mayorship. Until, yet again, he gets caught sending more sexts and tweets of his nether regions to busty 23 year olds.  He doesn’t get caught doing a ton of coke with hookers in a Howard Johnson’s, but he does clearly have a problem keeping his Johnson to himself. He is called Weiner after all, by name and nature, perhaps….

Huma, unlike her boss Hillary did back in the days, looks less like she is going to stand by her man, but that she can’t stand her man. He ploughs on, and she withdraws as the campaign continues, sheepishly appearing near him, keeping a very cold distance. But there’s a pall of sadness and desperation that creeps in and settles over the film, adding another layer to a gripping tale of modern hubris and overweening (I thank you) ambition.

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