'The Reagan Show'
It was the administration that set the stage for much of the post-Goldwater modern conservative movement – as well as what one journalist declared would be remembered as the most PR-savvy Presidential run ever. Filmmakers Sierra Pettengill and Pacho Velez revisit the Reagan era via the massive treasure trove of in-house archival footage of Rockin' Ronnie's time in office, complete with scandal deflections, stiff photo ops, goofs, gaffs, private moments and his political showdown with the Soviet Union. It can lapse into cutesy cleverness (enough with the whimsical music; using Reagan's old-movie footage as a diss was already old-news when hardcore punk was young). But when it uses these clips to construct a media-fed narrative that doubled as a political feedback loop, this doc says volumes about then and now. DF