Obama’s wheels: Secret Service to unveil new presidential limo

via CNN

WASHINGTON (CNN) — As a candidate, Barack Obama promoted hybrid cars.cadillac1_cnn

As president, he’ll be handed the keys to one. Sort of.

Shortly after taking the oath of office, Obama will climb into the Mother of All Hybrids — part car, part truck and, from the looks of it, part tank.

In keeping with recent tradition, the Secret Service will place a brand-new presidential limousine into service January 20 to drive the new president on the 2-mile jaunt down Pennsylvania Avenue during the inaugural parade.

Already, spy photos of the limo — with patches of gray primer — have leaked out. And already, the reviews:

“Ugly as sin,” says one car enthusiast on an auto Web site. “Can’t we make a hotter ride for our pres?”

“Sheesh,” says another, “why don’t they just transport the president around in an Abrams tank.” Continue reading

The “W” Movie Review

via Variety

Oliver Stone’s unusual and inescapably interesting “W.” feels like a rough draft of a film it might behoove him to remake in 10 or 15 years. The director’s third feature to hinge on a modern-era presidency, after “JFK” and “Nixon,” offers a clear and plausible take on the current chief executive’s psychological makeup and, considering Stone’s reputation and Bush’s vast unpopularity, a relatively even-handed, restrained treatment of recent politics. For a film that could have been either a scorching satire or an outright tragedy, “W.” is, if anything, overly conventional, especially stylistically. The picture possesses dramatic and entertainment value, but beyond serious filmgoers curious about how Stone deals with all this president’s men and women, it’s questionable how wide a public will pony up to immerse itself in a story that still lacks an ending.

Heavily researched but made very quickly – pic went before the cameras in May and is being rushed into release before the November election – “W.” has the benefit of filmmaking energy and good performances where they count, beginning with Josh Brolin’s arresting turn in the leading role. One can’t say Brolin is George W. Bush – the real one is still all too noticeably with us – but the actor offers a more than reasonable physical approximation and an interpretation that’s convincingly boisterous and determined. Aspects of the man unknown to the public are put forward that may or may not be true, but are sufficiently believable to make one go with them in a movie. Continue reading