Primary Colors

Starring John Travolta and Emma Thompson
Directed by Mike Nichols
Written by Elaine May
Based on the novel by Joe Klein
USA 1998
143 minutes

Less than a week after our next screening takes place a new US president will be elected. It will be a highly significant choice whichever candidate gets to the White House. Either it will be Hillary Clinton - America's first female president or Donald Trump - perhaps the most unlikely and preposterous in history. To mark this momentous occasion we are showing this smart, savvy satire of American politics in the Bill Clinton era. Based on a best-selling and anonymous roman a clef (later revealed to have been penned by journalist Joe Klein) Primary Colors has a screenplay by Elaine May, one of the funniest and sharpest comic writers of her age whose work includes A New Leaf and The Heartbreak Kid. The film was directed by Mike Nichols who, during the late 50s and early 60s, was partnered with May in a brilliant comedy double act. Nichols' other movies include Catch 22, The Graduate and Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?

The two leads are played by John Travolta as Presidential hopeful Jack Stanton (doing a note-perfect Clinton impersonation and British actress Emma Thompson as his formidable wife Susan. Relishing their respective roles the pair create characters not caricatures and are supported by a rich cast including Kathy Bates, Billy Bob Thornton and Larry Hagman.

To introduce this timely and witty dissection of the US political system we are very fortunate to have Jonathan Rugman - the distinguished, BAFTA award-winning Foreign Affairs Correspondent for Channel 4 News. Jonathan will bring his extensive experience of reporting on political affairs in the US and elsewhere in the world to give us a fascinating and topical context for the movie.

PLEASE NOTE because Primary Colors is over two hours long we will start the programme at 8.0pm sharp.