Roseanne Barr is one-of-a-kind. Her breakthrough television series about a working-class family has never left the air and remains fresh and relevant after more than twenty years. And like her same-named character, she has never been shy about expressing her opinions. She is one smart cookie. Who better to run for public office?
This entertaining, often enlightening documentary chronicles her efforts to stage a presidential campaign in 2012. Amidst the possibility of drowning in red tape, she wards off a barrage of slings and arrows and makes an honest effort to shake up the status quo by entering the world of politics.
Although she uses her sharp sense of humor to good effect, this campaign is no joke. Roseanne clearly wants to make a difference. Director Eric Weinrib, who has worked for years with Michael Moore, understands David vs. Goliath endeavors and captures this one with intimacy and candor. That candor extends to Barr’s family, who speak about her lifelong struggle to swim against the tide and remain an individual.
Along the way we get a capsule version of Roseanne’s rags-to-riches career, with well-chosen excerpts from live appearances and television shows.
Roseanne for President! also reveals the nuts and bolts involved in running for the highest office in the land. There is more to it than fundraising and meet-and-greet opportunities. Another less stubborn woman would have thrown in the towel early on, but Roseanne is not one to give up easily. That’s what makes this film both enjoyable and constantly surprising.