The Reagan Show

Loading the player ...

USA | 2017 | 75 minutes | Pacho Velez & Sierra Pettengill

Made up entirely of archival news and White House footage, this captivating you-are-there documentary captures the pageantry, absurdity, and mastery of the made-for-TV politics of the original performer/president, Ronald Reagan.

Friday, June 2, 2017

  • Purchased Tickets
  • Limited Availability
  • On Standby
  • Matinee

SIFF Cinema Uptown

8:45 PM Date has passed SOn Standby Directors Sierra Pettingill and Pacho Velez scheduled to attend

Saturday, June 3, 2017

  • Purchased Tickets
  • Limited Availability
  • On Standby
  • Matinee

SIFF Cinema Egyptian

2:30 PM Date has passed Directors Sierra Pettingill and Pacho Velez scheduled to attend

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

  • Purchased Tickets
  • Limited Availability
  • On Standby
  • Matinee

SIFF Cinema Uptown

4:30 PM Date has passed

Decades before 24-hour cable channels, Twitter posts, reality TV shows, fake news outlets, and Russian hacking scandals, there was Ronald Reagan, the original Performer-In-Chief. When the Hollywood actor-known for his on-screen persona playing cowboys, tough guys, and, infamously, a bachelor babysitter to a chimp-took over the White House in 1981, his public image-savvy administration redefined the look and feel of what it meant to be the President of the United States. Chock full of wit and political irony, filmmakers Pacho Velez (Manakamana) and Sierra Pettengill (Town Hall) have crafted an innovative documentary using nothing but archival 1980s network news broadcasts and rarely seen videotapes created by the media-fueled Reagan administration itself to showcase their made-for-TV approach to government, with special focus on his finger-on-the-button rivalry with charismatic Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. "There's just something about this time in American politics where political discourse goes from being about speech and rhetoric and starts being about images," says director Velez. The Reagan Show reveals how one President's carefully orchestrated image translated into real political power, an effect whose repercussions we are feeling more than ever today.

Director Biography

Pacho Velez has served as an assistant professor at several Ivy League institutions, and in 2015 was awarded a Princeton Arts Fellowship. Sierra Pettengill's feature documentary debut, Town Hall (2013), was nominated for SIFF's Documentary Award.

Sponsored by KNKX

  • Director: Pacho Velez & Sierra Pettengill
  • Premiere Status: Seattle
  • Country: USA
  • Year: 2017
  • Running Time: 75 minutes
  • Producer: Sierra Pettengill
  • Screenplay: Josh Alexander, Pacho Velez
  • Editors: Francisco Bello, Daniel Garber, David Barker
  • Music: Laura Karpman
  • Website: Official Film Website
  • Filmography: VELEZ: Dragstrip (2015); Manakamana (2013); Bastards of Utopia (2010); PETTENGILL: The Town Hall (2013)
  • Language: English
  • Format: DCP