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Sarah Palin doc 'The Undefeated' still waiting on its first positive review

Undefeated

Sarah Palin, when asked by Katie Couric what newspapers and magazines she reads, said "'all of them". So surely the hockey mom and former Vice Presidential candidate knows of a positive review "The Undefeated" has scored, but film review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes can't. As of Monday afternoon, the bio-pic about Palin has scored a humiliating 0% among critics.

No one likes it.

Even the new Kevin James movie, "The Zookeeper," a comedy co-starring talking zoo animals, got a 13%.

"Anyone hoping for an inside look at Palin's private life will be disappointed," wrote Variety. "Political junkies eager to know more about Palin's vice presidential campaign are similarly out of luck."

"Once you realize the film is just going to be a string of encomiums against a backdrop of frantically edited archival material in which few shots are allowed to stay onscreen longer than three seconds, it's clear that no meaningful analysis of the woman's career or political agenda will be forthcoming," complained The Hollywood Reporter.

Here at the Times, Robert Abele also gave it a negative review.

"By the time 'The Undefeated' hits its final rallying-cry note, hinting with a hammer swing at the imagined glory of a 2012 presidential run, the patience of even die-hards might be tested by Bannon's ain't-she-perfect fervor. All Palin has to do is make those fans happy and run. But then she'd really have to live up to that title," Abele concludes.

The New York Post's review of "The Undefeated" is missing from the 10 negative reviews for the film on Rotten Tomatoes, but it was one of the earliest and most damning -- despite being owned by Rupert Murdoch, who pays Palin to appear on Fox News.

The Post's Kyle Smith warns that it "is just a fan film from an outsider hitching a ride on [Palin's] fame, hoping that attention from political reporters in the early primary states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina will provide a springboard for a national release [of the movie]."

That critique got the critic uninvited to the next screening of the film.

Good thing political blog Wonkette was not invited to any screenings. Describing the onslaught of miserable reviews, Wonkette blogger Kirsten Boyd Johnson said the film opened "to exactly the amount of excitement visible on the faces of trapped subway car passengers standing next to someone who has just [passed gas]."

When asked this weekend about the bad reviews, the movie's director, Stephen Bannon, told the Ticket it didn't bother him.

"The critics talk about the marginalia of what I left out while acknowledging [Palin's] great accomplishments. I will take that trade all day long," he said.

RELATED:

Sarah Palin in Iowa for premiere of 'The Undefeated'

Sarah Palin film 'The Undefeated' draws 50 people at Texas advance screening

Sarah Palin documentary 'The Undefeated' opens in Orange County: three pay to attend

-- Tony Pierce
twitter.com/busblog

Andrew Malcolm is on vacation through Tuesday.

Image: Screenshot of "The Undefeated" page on Rotten Tomatoes. Credit: Rotten Tomatoes

 
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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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