- JFK (1991)
- JFK, another presidential biopic by Oliver Stone, focuses on the events leading up to President Kennedy's assassination. Both films depict influential American leaders, though it is interesting that Stone chose a much less controversial means of portraying President Bush. JFK explores cover-up conspiracies surrounding Kennedy's death. Stone establishes a distinctive thesis about numerous members of the government, such as J. Edgar Hoover and Lyndon B. Johnson, who were responsible for the assassination. By contrast, W. is a much more straightforward film, sticking mostly to true facts about the President and avoiding any scandalous conspiracies, save for the idea that involvement in the Middle East was Cheney's way of assuring American dominance and that Bush Jr. wanted to prove himself to his father. Unlike W., which had an original screenplay, JFK was adapted from two books: On the Trail of the Assassins and The Plot That Killed Kennedy. It was also a huge box office success, earning $205 million and winning two Academy Awards. However, JFK was not without its fair share of controversy. People accused Stone of being too liberal with the facts and for implying the President Johnson was partially responsible for Kennedy's death.
- Nixon (1995)
- Nixon is yet another presidential biopic. Though Stone originally meant for JFK and Nixon to be companion films, since both presidents were men who greatly influenced him during his youth, Nixon actually has a great number of similarities with W., since Nixon is often viewed as the political "father" to Reagan and Reagan as the political "father" to Bush Jr. The two films have a number of stylistic similarities as well, both present different memories from the presidents' childhoods and terms in office in a non-linear fashion and both utilizing real-life footage. They also present the two presidents' stories as tragedies. Bush was clearly misled and excessively proud, while Nixon had great potential that was lost because of his personal mistakes. Critics were often surprised that Stone was not harsher on Bush given his strong liberal affiliations and Bush's extremely poor political standing towards the end of his term. Similarly, while Nixon is critical of the president's politics, it is surprisingly understanding of his personality flaws and the mistakes he made that resulted in the Watergate scandal and his eventual impeachment.
Abe Lincoln in Illinois (1940)
Jefferson in Paris (1995)
Sally Hemings: An American Scandal (2000)