A thorough and effective examination of the Johnson presidency, focusing on the escalating involvement in Vietnam that would eventually undue his administration. Very well written, the film always feels realistic, often re-creating scenes with verbatim historical transcripts. Michael Gambon's Lyndon Johnson is uncanny, he captures the overbearing, homespun demeanor he was known for, while also replicating his mannerisms perfectly. Overall, I would argue the film was far too kind to Johnson, conveying him as more of a victim of circumstance, who found himself in over his head and refusing to cut his losses, and whose otherwise lofty achievements (the mythical "Great Society" programs of dubious effectiveness) go unnoticed. Still, it was very effective in showing a conflicted man, reminding me almost of Oliver Stone's Nixon. Similarly, Alec Baldwin's McNamara was surprisingly authentic, showing a brilliant, though naive, man of cool demeanor. The running time is a bit bloated, but well worth it for history/political buffs.