Game Change (2012) - Rotten Tomatoes

Game Change2012

Game Change (2012)



Critic Consensus: Empathetic performances from a starry cast gives Game Change authenticity and heart, although its political insights often warble between feeling too soon and too late.

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Movie Info

The 2008 U.S. presidential campaign shifts into high gear after Arizona senator John McCain (Ed Harris) picks Alaska governor Sarah Palin (Julianne Moore) to be his running mate in the general election against Barack Obama. Based on the book Game Change: Obama and the Clintons, McCain and Palin, and the Race of a Lifetime by John Heilemann and Mark Halperin. ~ Joe Friedrich, Rovi

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Ed Harris
as John McCain
Julianne Moore
as Sarah Palin
Woody Harrelson
as Steve Schmidt
Peter MacNicol
as Rick Davis
Jamey Sheridan
as Mark Salter
Sarah Paulson
as Nicolle Wallace
Ron Livingston
as Mark Wallace
David Barry Gray
as Todd Palin
Larry Sullivan
as Chris Edwards
Mikal Evans
as Bexie Nobles
Colby French
as Tucker Eskew
Bruce Altman
as Fred Davis
Spencer Garrett
as Steve Biegun
Brian Howe
as Randy Scheunemann
John Rothman
as A.B. Culvahouse
Austin Pendleton
as Joe Lieberman
Alex Hyde-White
as Lindsey Graham
Ron Perkins
as Bill McInturff
Sandy Bainum
as Cindy McCain
Doug Nelson
as Matthew Scully
Tiffany Thornton
as Meghan McCain
Melissa Farman
as Bristol Palin
Taya Miller
as Piper Palin
Brittany Underwood
as Willow Palin
Arlo James
as Trig Palin
Kevin Bigley
as Track Palin
Justin Gaston
as Levi Johnston
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Critic Reviews for Game Change

All Critics (42) | Top Critics (25)

Try as the filmmakers might, it just isn't the same. How could it be, really?

August 6, 2012 | Full Review…

The dramatic re-creations are somewhat uneven: The convention staging is quite convincing, the campaign trail less so.

August 6, 2012 | Full Review…

The constant use of actual news footage adds a bit of verisimilitude but also constantly raises the question of why this lightly fictionalized version of the election actually needs to exist.

August 6, 2012 | Full Review…

Game Change, which explores how smart people make dumb decisions, is a movie for all of us.

August 6, 2012 | Full Review…

The movie is more balanced than I expected.

August 6, 2012 | Full Review…

The most egregious fault to be found here is that Roach and Strong succumb to the same indulgences as the news media they're so happy to critique.

August 3, 2012 | Rating: 1/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Game Change

This look into the political sphere surrounding the 2008 election is eye opening, very intuitive, and looks and feels like a real depiction of those seen more as celebrities than politicians. Whether or not you find the view slanted, and liberal biases threaded throughout, it was a really microscopic look into the spectrum of political punditry nowadays, how a candidate's look and youth appeal are weighted heavier than their ideology. Palin (Moore) is of course demonized as an ignorant fame whore who finds the work too difficult but the fame heartening. Harris plays John McCain as a hearty, robust American who only wants to calm the nerves of a perverse society and give order once again. He's shown as the good guy, part of the Lost Generation, and Palin is the new, the stupid, the lazy America of youth. It's almost heart breaking to watch Palin get humiliated by the public when she has a certain level of integrity and small town charm. Even if she is demonized, she's depicted as a good person thrust onto the national stage without preparedness, which leaves her looking vulnerable, if overly ambitious.

Spencer S.
Spencer S.

Super Reviewer


Julianne Moore scores a personal triumph in this making a woman who is basically an unqualified not terribly bright egoist at least seem human and somewhat used. Quite a feat. The rest of the production is high caliber with exemplary work from Ed Harris, Sarah Paulson and particularly Woody Harrelson. The rest of the supporting cast, Peter MacNicol, Larry Sullivan et. al, is just as strong. It's disquieting though to realize how close an uninformed puppet came to a seat of supreme power.

jay nixon
jay nixon

Super Reviewer

One of those political dramas that skips the red/blue dichotomy to remind you that politicians are people too. You walk away with a profound respect for Senator McCain, a deep sympathy for Governor Palin, and an overwhelming relief for the outcome of the 2008 election. Overall, a well made movie. Julianne Moore does wonderfully in her attempt to add color to the most colorful character in recent politics, and Woody Harrelson proves again that he is one of the finest actors of the generation. Entertaining and fun, in a History channel sort of way.

Jason Robinson
Jason Robinson

Super Reviewer

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