Hulu recently premiered its first movie. Crawford began as an expose into the ways the Bush campaign took the image of a rustic cowboy, smalltown American man and turned him into a President (when he wasn’t really from a small town, nor really a rustic cowboy). What this movie turned into was a great insight into what makes a nation function: its people.

This is really a film about identity: the identity of a President, a town, the people of the town, and the visitors. The most obvious, of course, is the identity of the President. Look closer though and you’re going to see how a town’s identity changes because of the historic events that take place within it. You’re going to see how the locals shape their identities around not only the town, but the events that occur within that town. The visitors change not only the identity of the town, the people, and the President, but we see such a small piece of them that their identity is set up to establish the idea of “other” within the town.

So much of our personal identities are constructed from where we’ve lived, how we’ve lived, who we call “our people,” and other factors. I think that this movie is an excellent look into that phenomenon, in a microcosm sort of way.

It’s free. It’s online. It’s a great piece of documentary work.


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