Best of Enemies

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Brief Synopsis: "A documentary about the legendary series of nationally televised debates in 1968 between two great public intellectuals, the liberal Gore Vidal and the conservative William F. Buckley Jr. Intended as commentary on the issues of their day, these vitriolic and explosive encounters came to define the modern era of public discourse in the media, marking the big bang moment of our contemporary media landscape when spectacle trumped content and argument replaced substance. Best of Enemies delves into the entangled biographies of these two great thinkers and luxuriates in the language and the theater of their debates, begging the question, 'What has television done to the way we discuss politics in our democracy today?'"

Overall Ranking: 959 (Rank from 2015: # 38)

Adjusted* Rating:
(lowest rating dropped)

Ratings Breakdown
(The Mixed Bag)

Buttery 40%
Regular 60%
Half-Popped 0%
Stale 0%
Burnt 0%


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Reviewer Rating Review Secondary Ratings
David Baruffi88(full review)
Chris Nashawaty of EW85(full review)
Gorgon Reviews80(full review)
Fast Film Reviews Mark Hobin70(full review)
Bryan Lienesch69 - Where 'The Best of Enemies' was really on to something was documenting a birthpoint of superficial news content that now dominates the cable network. But rather than focus on this relevant notion, it's a footnote to much less interesting, much less important concepts.
Comedy: 3
Sex Appeal: 4
Scary: 3
Rewatch: 3

People Involved

  • Kelsey Grammer (Himself)
  • John Lithgow (Himself)
  • Gore Vidal (Himself)
  • Dick Cavett (Himself)
  • Christopher Hitchens (Himself)
  • Noam Chomsky (Himself)
  • Robert Gordon (Director)