Narrative by Liza Johnson
In 1970 one of the most bizarre historical encounters took place: a meeting between Elvis “The King” Presley and President Richard Nixon. Why these two characters came together is still somewhat of a mystery, but the result of the meeting is a photograph of the two men, which has become the most requested photograph in the National Archives. Elvis & Nixon tells the fictionalized version of this encounter in a superbly entertaining and funny way. It’s hard to expect anything but magical, when you’ve got Michael Shannon (Elvis) and Kevin Spacey (Nixon) playing the title roles and actors such as Johnny Knoxville and Colin Hanks supporting them. And it truly is an entertaining and wild ride that culminates to the encounter itself, which lets the audience become immersed in what might have happened behind those closed doors. Shannon and Spacey do an excellent job of bringing these characters to life, without doing an impersonation. In an interview with Tribeca Film, Shannon states, “Elvis did a lot of mysterious things. This meeting [with Nixon] was a very mysterious thing. […] So it was one of our main concerns to unravel those mysteries and take Elvis seriously.” And while the actors and director succeeded in making these characters truthful and believable, the audience still gets to laugh a lot as the story unfolds.