The Contender
The Contender (2000)

The hard-ball gamesmanship and casual character assassination of American politics sets the stage for this thriller from writer and director Rod Lurie. When the Vice President of the United States unexpectedly dies, all eyes in Washington… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: October 13, 2000
DVD Release Date: February 27, 2001
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Critic Score: 76% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Critics say this political thriller is solidly made, with top-notch performances, screenplay, and direction for about two third of the film. Unfortunately, the ending almost tank the whole movie.

Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly

The Contender booms and pontificates, full of bravado and that ineffable quality of the current political season, chutzpah.

Full review…
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

This is one of those rare movies where you leave the theater having been surprised and entertained, and then start arguing.

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Nell Minow
Common Sense Media

Thoughtful, enjoyable film for older teens.

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Jay Carr
Boston Globe

Wonderfully cast and slickly directed, but so crudely written as to make its espousing of progressive principles seem crassly exploitative to the point of self-parody.

Susan Stark
Detroit News

No question, The Contender taps into the modern political zeitgeist. As drama, however, it flails.

Christopher Smith
Bangor Daily News (Maine)

Sex, lies and politics--they all boil together beautifully in "The Contender," a strong political drama that understands Washington, knows its dirty secrets, and uses its excellent cast to fine effect.

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Eleanor Ringel Cater
Atlanta Journal-Constitution

A vivid, juicy, thoroughly entertaining movie.

Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune

An intelligent and informed look at the preposterous ways our leaders are often picked and sabotaged.

Michael Dequina

Pretty much shameless leftist propaganda being sold as conventional Hollywood entertainment, but it manages to satisfy on the traditional genre terms.

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More reviews for The Contender

Flixster Audience Score: 73% Flixster User Reviews
Dan Schultz
A decent, if very flawed and Hollywood-ized political thriller concerning the President (Jeff Bridges) having to fill the void of Vice President, and deciding… More
Film Crazy
Not a bad movie really i love the storyline and cast and was really a good movie to watch and shows how sexism plays a part in politics and becoming an MP or… More
Lorenzo von Matterhorn
<i>"Sometimes you can assassinate a leader without firing a shot."</i> Sexy secrets from a womans past come to light as she runs for Vice… More
Curtis Lilly
An interesting film. It had congress hearings, Jeff Bridges bowling, and Gary Oldman with horrible baldness.
Drew Smith
There are so many elements that could have made this a complete disaster, such as the hilariously bad ending, the movie's inability to hold its position on… More
Jens S.
Brilliantly acted political thriller about a vice president nomination causing power games within the US government. Full of great dialogues delivered by an… More