The Film The Manchurian Candidate

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The films The Manchurian Candidate (1962), Seven Days in May (1964) and Fail Safe (1964) were the emergence of a new political film genre recognized as political thrillers. The films individually focused on specific political issues that were going on in real American society like The Manchurian Candidate focused on McCarthyism and communism, Seven Days in May focused on inside betrayal in the White House, and Fail Safe focused on issues with Russia. What made these films create a new genre was that collectively they had a twist that the audience wouldn’t expect to see. For example the Manchurian Candidate add a complexity to each and every character that for the length of the film they’re deemed to be troubled like the brainwashed veteran from the Korean War Major Bennett Marco portrayed by Frank Sinatra to assassinate when commanded to do so. The shocking conclusion of the film is that in the end it was his mother (portrayed by Angela Lansbury) who was commanding him to do so since she herself was a communist and did a very well job at manipulating not only her son but blaming other people for being communists in order to keep her own cover something that wasn’t incorporated into films quite yet until this film. The twists, complexity, and manipulation by the characters are what made this a political thriller and the first and foremost established as one in 1962. The thrill continues in Seven Days in May, but the story line shifts completely, it’s something fictional but
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