Libertarian icon Clint Eastwood’s “J. Edgar” — a biopic on the legendary borderline fascist F.B.I. director J. Edgar Hoover — has a new trailer. And while historical portraits are always prone to ideological bias, emphasizing areas that echo with your political viewpoint and de-emphasizing others, it looks like an intriguing prestige event-film to come in these days of Tea Party anti-government rhetoric.
Will Eastwood’s portrait show the evils of centralized power, or simply the crazy antics of a power-hungry individual? Judging from the key quotes that book-end the preview, I’d say it’s probably a little bit of both: “Sometimes you need to bend the rules a little to keep your country safe,” Leo DiCaprio’s Hoover says at one point, sounding a lot like former VP Dick Cheney. And the final refrain, “Even great men can be corrupted,” suggests a more classic tragic-heroic tale about individual hubris.