March 09, 2001 at 05:00 AM EST

Gary Oldman reportedly objected to the way his character, a representative out to squash the confirmation of the U.S.’ first female Vice President (Allen), came off in this political drama about the separation of sex and state. He shouldn’t have. His blandly evil Shelly Runyon is a standout in a film that features Oscar-nominated performances from Allen and Bridges. The Contender may seem pokey in this whiz-bang West Wing world, but it still makes for a good political chew. B+

type
Movie
mpaa
R
runtime
126 minutes
director
Rod Lurie
Cast
Philip Baker Hall,
Mariel Hemingway,
William L. Petersen,
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