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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    That’s preposterous! Nixon skis to glory as Frost

    Appearances can be deceiving, especially in the film industry. This is what you might expect if movie posters accurately advertised the content of movies…

    The political thriller “”Frost/Nixon”” dramatizes President Richard M. Nixon’s largely unpublicized foray into the world of competitive skiing known by those involved as the Jack Frost Fiasco.

    The year is 1973 and President Richard Nixon (Frank Langella) sits exhausted behind the oval office desk. When you’re the president, it’s next to impossible to find a moment’s rest – especially when you spend sleepless nights drinking scotch and crying over old photo albums.

    After being accosted by Vice President Gerald Ford (Willem Dafoe) about his photos, Nixon reveals the truth to his friend: Nixon has been in mourning over his old ski instructor, a legendary warrior of the slopes known only as the Sensei (Michael Sheen). This month marked the 40th anniversary of the Sensei’s disappearance off the snowy face of Mount Destiny, a ski slope so deadly it received its own difficulty ranking: death diamond. In dreams Sensei’s spirit cries out to Dick for vengeance against the mountain, and Dick can’t sleep.

    Desperate to help his friend and determined to get a free vacation, Ford convinces Nixon that the only way to give Sensei’s spirit peace is to conquer Mount Destiny himself. Seeing no honorable alternative, Nixon agrees, and along with Ford and Henry Kissinger, takes a road trip to his California home.

    Holed up in a dilapidated ski shack, Ford tries to coach Nixon in the ways of the snow warrior while Kissinger trolls town in search of college girls. Worried his identity might be compromised, or his lengthy absence from the White House questioned, Nixon dons a plastic Nixon mask while his quest for vengeance ensues. Several training montages later, the president has assumed the identity of Jack Frost, the masked ski phenomenon from the East. In order to challenge Mount Destiny, he must prove his strength and cunning as a warrior in the annual Slopes of Destiny competition – a frigid, bloody gauntlet that pits California’s most powerful skiers and snowboarders against one another.

    By the film’s epic third act, Jack Frost has obliterated the competition and become a media darling. When the man in the Nixon mask ascends Mount Destiny on live television, 400 million Americans wonder who their hero really is. Nixon sheds one last tear for his Sensei before he shoves off the peak and meets his destiny.

    As the sun sets, the trio sets back off for Washington, D.C., where an enraged White House staff informs Nixon that he has two weeks to clear out his desk.

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