14 September 2016 | cherold
Okay as a history lesson but dull as a movie
There's nothing terrible about Confirmation. The acting is decent, with persuasive performances. It puts out the basic facts, shows the Republican street-fight tactics that included a threat to introduce nonsensical, sleazy testimony from some Hill students, and portrays the Democrats as outgunned and, as is often the case, unwilling to pull out their own knife even after the Republicans draw blood.
The problem is, it's all pretty boring. To some extent, that may be the result of the source material; neither Thomas nor Hill is a dynamic personality, and you're essentially faced with a he-said- she-said between two staid Republican lawyers.
At the same time, the movie seems desperate to keep things dry and serious. Alan Simpson says some nutty things, but the actor says them as blandly as possible. Kinnear does a good job of imitating Biden, except his performance tosses out Biden's low-key humor in favor of midwestern blandness.
Basically, any place where the movie has a choice between making things more dynamic or less dynamic, it chooses less dynamic, resulting in something that's actually sometimes less dramatic than watching the original hearings on youtube.
Confirmation seems built for the classroom, where students can watch and discuss it. If you want to learn a little history, I'd say this is a palatable choice, but if you want to watch something enjoyable, give this a pass.