As Americans, we like to think we're the only ones who elect stupid leaders and that other countries have it better. But forgetting the lessons of history and being swayed by charismatic but shady people is a worldwide problem, one that the new documentary The Kingmaker shines a light on.
Imelda Marcos was the First Lady of the Philippines for 21 years, during which time she and her husband basically robbed the country blind, until the people rose up and forced them into exile after the 1986 election. But apparently the citizens had a short memory, as her family returned and she was allowed to run for office and, more recently, push for the election of her son Bongbong for Vice President and Rodrigo Duterte for President. (You may remember Duterte received praise from President Trump for his drug war policy, which basically consists of murdering drug dealers without due process.)
The Kingmaker takes a look at how voters found her charming, even as she bragged about her wealth while they were barely scraping by. (Sound familiar?) The film played at Venice, Telluride and TIFF, and will open in New York and L.A. on November 8 to qualify for the Academy Awards before finding its way to Showtime, which acquired it earlier this year.