The Reeler Review
 
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Surely, Only a few minutes into An Unreasonable Man, we have none other than Phil Donahue dropping the mother of all literary allusions by declaring Nader's story to be "Shakespearean" in scope and in tragedy. What becomes clear over the course of an extraordinary, absorbing two hours is that this is not just a man from another time's literature, this is a man from another -- arguably better -- time. While Nader is a virulently divisive figure today, the directors do well by their subject to trace his résumé back to its beginnings, and the things we can all can agree on. Combining a vast selection of talking head interviews and archival footage, Mantel (who later pops up as one of those talking heads, as she worked for Nader in the late '70s) and Skrovan fashion a sort of oral history (and a reasonably democratic one, including Nader himself) to reconstruct not only his accomplishments as a private citizen (a public policy record, as one commenter points out, that any president would envy), but how they forged the path toward his decision, after decades of opting out of politics, to run for president in 2000.

 



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