Just a whiff of the central conceit behind Gabriel Range’s Channel Four docudrama was enough to get the Right’s hackles up. Hypothesising the future assassination of President Bush? You could almost hear the “How dare theys!” from across the pond. Deliberately confrontational, though communicated with even-keeled clarity rather than hysteria, it’s an eloquent attestation of our need to hold dear to free speech – as the director argues in the bonus interview, “rushed judgement” is just one of the facets of a post-9/11 planet his film seeks to expose. Its meticulous authenticity is revealed in the makers’ commentary. Their seamless matting of archival, manipulated and dramatised footage heightens the plausibility of what’s a gripping whodunnit and an illumination of our grave new world of dread and suspicion, grievance and retribution. There’s a germ of mischievous satire ingrained within it, too. If you can catch your breath, you might even laugh.
BEST BIT The bit where Bush gets it. Duh.