REVIEW: Weiner (2016 – Documentary)

Theatrical Release Poster - Sundance Selects
Theatrical Release Poster – Sundance Selects

The following is a quick review of Weiner – Directed by Josh Kriegman & Elyse Steinberg.

Anthony Weiner’s career has been really strange, so far. Some ups, but many downs. In Kriegman and Steinberg’s fly-on-the-wall documentary Weiner, we follow Anthony Weiner during his disastrous 2013 mayoral campaign.

At that time, his relationship with Huma Abedin – an aide to Hillary Clinton – was already on the rocks, so to speak, after Weiner tweeted an inappropriate picture, which ended up forcing him to resign as a member of Congress. What’s absolutely fantastic about this documentary, however, is how the 2013 campaign suddenly became a story about another damaging sexting scandal.

Here we have full access to a politician that once seemed so charismatic, and suddenly became the face of online political scandals. It’s a really sad story to watch unfold, as Huma Abedin, at one point, becomes the focal point of the documentary due to their relationship slowly falling apart. I’m sure some might find this whole documentary very funny, but I thought it was much more sad and tragic and just scary, in a way. How this guy just ruined his career and endangered his wife’s career.

This entire documentary feels very unique both in content, opportunity, and timing. With regards to the content, this film isn’t just about the downfall of a political talent’s career, it’s more about the downfall of a marriage and the idiocy of a man some people championed and looked up to.

You get full access to those downfalls in this documentary, which is truly incredible and unexpected. As for timing, this film couldn’t have come out in a better year. In 2016, Weiner’s scandal became even more important as it had an impact on the 2016 Presidential Election.

I don’t think Weiner is an extremely important documentary – like Ava DuVernay’s 13th is – but it is a fascinating and an almost unique political scandal with unparalleled access and perfect timing. It’s one of the most powerful documentaries of the year solely because of how Weiner and Abedin’s marriage is shown.

9 out of 10

– Jeffrey Rex

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