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King im Oval Office

Elvis Presley offers himself up as an undercover agent to President Richard Nixon in December 1970. An amusing acting tour de force with Kevin Spacey and Michael Shannon.


“Who the fuck set this up?“ is the only thing US President Richard Nixon can say when Elvis Presley wants to meet him at the White House in December 1970. Vietnam and Woodstock causes the King of Rock ‘n Roll to worry about national security and he wants to become an FBI agent. Nixon rejects meeting him at first, especially because he always takes naps in the afternoon. But a photo with Elvis would be PR gold and Nixon’s daughter wants an autograph. And so the bizarre meeting takes place. Elvis gossips about the Beatles, drugs, and communism and Nixon is perplexed about the nonchalance with which Elvis ignores the rules of etiquette in the oval office. ELVIS & NIXON is first and foremost an acting tour de force: Kevin Spacy (used to playing a politician since HOUSE OF CARDS) makes Nixon awkwardly shifty and Michael Shannon (who can also be seen in NOCTURNAL ANIMALS) is electrifying as Elvis in his prime. Director Liza Johnson (HATESHIP LOVESHIP) focuses on Presley, Nixon mostly serves as a projection surface for the King. There’s a running gag in which the superstar encounters uninvolved third parties: the people are perplexed by his aura. Presley himself struggles with his icon status and compares himself to a bottle of coke while looking in the mirror. His friend and PR advisor Jerry (Alex Pettyfer) is one of the few people who know the real Elvis. Along with the characters, the film has an accurate feel that charmingly imitates the era, from the pseudo-color opening credits to the bushy sideburns, abundant hairspray, and nostalgic dissolves.

Christian Horn

Translation: Elinor Lewy


Original title: King im Oval Office
USA 2016, 86 min
Genre: Historical Film, Comedy
Director: Liza Johnson
Author: Cary Elwes, Joey Sagal, Hanala Sagal
DOP: Terry Stacey
Montage: Sabine Hoffmann, Michael Taylor
Music: Ed Shearmur
Distributor: Universum
Cast: Kevin Connolly, Kevin Spacey, Luke Wilson, Colin Hanks, Michael Shannon, Alex Pettyfer
Release: 08.12.2016




  • OV Original version
  • OmU Original with German subtitles
  • OmeU Original with English subtitles

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