Jay Bulworth is your typical senator going through a nervous breakdown. The empty speeches, lies, money, and pressure have led him to plan his own assassination on a weekend trip home to California just before the election. However, a cord snaps in him and like Jim Carrey's rambling lawyer in Liar, Liar, Bulworth can only tell the truth. This new freedom turns Bulworth on and he spews the ugly truth about politics: he tells mass media they are as corrupt as insurance companies; lambastes a black church for not having leaders; and riles the Jewish power elite of Hollywood. He enters South Central running away from advisors (including a bemused Oliver Platt) and mixing it up with a potential new girlfriend (Halle Berry) and a local boss (Don Cheadle). He offends across the board, even developing an inherent knack to rap his speeches. And the public loves it. The weekend becomes a clarifying point for Bulworth: he finds a reason to live. Beatty's rude and relevant comedy is a one-joke movie, but the joke is pretty good. It's a courageous film that is always sharp even though it loses narrative focus. Beatty's hilarious raps are so inspired they deserve repeated viewings. As usual, Beatty surrounds himself with a great crew, Ennio Morricone's music and Vittorio Storaro's cinematography being especially noteworthy. Beatty and Storaro even have the audacity to imitate two very famous photographs in the film's final seconds. The script by Beatty and Jeremy Pikser won the L.A. Film Critics award and was nominated for an Oscar. --Doug Thomas
Isn't that OBVIOUS? You got half your kids are out of work and the other half are in jail. Do you see ANY Democrat doing anything about it? Certainly not me! So what're you gonna do, vote Republican? Come on! Come on, you're not gonna vote Republican! Let's call a spade a spade!
I mean - come on! You can have a Billion Man March! If you don't put down that malt liquor and chicken wings, and get behind someone other than a running back who stabs his wife, you're NEVER gonna get rid of somebody like me!
Just between us, Senator, do you think it's advisable to schedule campaign stops with industry leaders when you have such a low opinion of their product?
My guys are not stupid. They always put the big Jews on my schedule. You're mostly Jews, right? Three out of four of you?
I bet Murphy put something bad about Farrakhan in here for you!
What is it exactly you're concerned about, Murphy?
I'm concerned that you stood up in front of three hundred people in a black church and told them that they were not a factor and never would be as long as we remain in the pocket of the insurance lobby! I'm concerned that you went to a fundraiser in Beverly Hills and told various leaders of the entertainment industry that they make a lousy product, and since many of them also happen to be Jewish, you decided the PRUDENT thing to do would be to MOCK their Jewish paranoia! I'm concerned that we are in an after-hours club in Compton on the eve of the most important event of the campaign swing, where God knows how much illegal activity is taking place and YOU are SMOKING MARIJUANA! Now, Senator - I work for you. You call the shots. But I will be able to do my job so much better if you will just simply tell me... what is this new strategy? Just tell me a little bit!
Have a drink, Murphy. Live your life.
You know something? We had a next-door neighbor who would lose her mind from time to time. What was weird when she got like that was this: she could only speak in song lyrics.
Murphy, Feldman, you're lookin' pretty beat / I thought you might feel better with some ribs to eat / Eat 'em, gentlemen, you'll think they're really fine / And if you want a couple more you can get 'em anytime!
I am incredibly frightened.
I'm giving them entry-level positions into the only growth-sector occupation that's truly open to them right now. That's the substance supply industry. They gonna run this shit someday. They gonna have the whole empire. Man, y'all don't give a f*** about it. You greedy-ass politicians. That's what you tell me every time that y'all vote to cut them school programs; every time y'all vote to cut them funds to the job programs. What the f***; how a... how a young man gonna take care of his financial responsibilities workin' at motherf***in' Burger King? He ain't. He ain't, and please don't even start with the school shit. They ain't no education goin' on up in that motherf***er. 'Cause y'all motherf***in' politicians done f***ed the shit up. So what they gonna do? What's a young man supposed to do then, right? What's he gonna do? He gonna come to me, that's what he's gonna do. Why? 'Cause I'm a businessman, and as a businessman, you gotta limit your liabilities. And that's what these shorties offer me: limited liabilities; because of their limited vulnerability to legal sanctions, man. It's the same f***in' thing in politics, Dog. You find an edge, you gotta exploit that shit. That's why y'all sent all them motherf***in' teenagers to Iraq. Die over some motherf***in' oil money. Send the motherf***in' CIA up in the 'hood with all the f***in yayos. Slangin' in the hood man. It's the same shit in politics.
Yo, everybody gonna get sick someday / But nobody knows how they gonna pay / Health care, managed care, HMOs / Ain't gonna work, no sir, not those / 'Cause the thing that's the same in every one of these / Is these motherf***ers there, the insurance companies!
Yeah, yeah / You can call it single-payer or Canadian way / Only socialized medicine will ever save the day! Come on now, lemme hear that dirty word - SOCIALISM!