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Teen critic: Costner’s comedy unrealistic, lacks humor

Leigh Jensen, 15

Leigh Jensen, 15

“Swing Vote” is a comedy produced by and starring Kevin Costner about blue collar single dad Bud Johnson from New Mexico who thinks voting is pointless.

His do-good daughter attempts to vote for him and the machine malfunctions, causing a misread ballot. Suddenly the feds are waking him up in the middle of the night and telling him that he has 10 days to recast his vote, and the election is so close that he is the one deciding voter.

I had trouble with the fact that the basic premise of this movie is so wildly unrealistic. Never in the past, present or future of America would the outcome of a presidential election come down to one county, one town, one single misread ballot.

“Swing Vote” was supposed to be a comedy, but swung closer to being extremely depressing. Alcoholism, unemployment and homes on wheels don’t tend to be laugh factories.

Jokes about Johnson (Costner) having his daughter taken away by social services didn’t exactly tickle my funny bone either. The daughter, a smart little girl who feels that voting is your civic responsibility, feels that her personal responsibility is taking care of her father. Numerous scenes of Molly (Madeline Carroll) waking up her dad, making meals, and driving him home from bars when he passes out were far from funny.

The actions of the presidential candidates while courting Johnson for the one deciding vote would be an embarrassment to America and politics in general, had they been real politicians. The Democratic candidate turns pro-life and the Republican candidate suddenly loves nature just to appease Bud.

And the fact that Bud didn’t understand and/or care about the magnitude of his situation enough to refrain from smelling the leather on the seats of Air Force One doesn’t make me laugh; it makes me worry that people like that actually exist.

“Swing Vote” was an insanely unrealistic, simplistic and predictable movie that was dragged out to nearly two hours and did not manage to drag out a single laugh.

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