I shouldn’t be giving propaganda suggestions to a master manipulator, but I do have one for Donald Trump: Remake Hollywood movies to tell your story.
In Trump’s alternative universe — where lies are facts, allies are enemies, dictators are friends — so much is about show. And what better show for winning the minds of the masses than Hollywood movies? Alas, from the Trump perspective, the movie industry is in the hands of Socialists.
But given his limitless wealth, ego and lack of taste, I think he could still find financing for some of these remakes, while he awaits the arrival of the next Leni Reifenstahl. So try these on for size, POTUS:
“Gone With the Wind” A handsome devil-may-care carpetbagger falls for a beautiful and haughty woman. She finally succumbs to his seduction (and pre-nup). The movie bypasses the familiar “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn,” in favor of a long shot of the couple walking off into the sunset wearing jackets emblazoned with “I Really Don’t Care, Do U?”
“Two Thousand Four Hundred and Fifty-Four is Enough” In a movie remake of the classic TV comedy series “Eight is Enough,” a charmingly clueless billionaire and his European princess wife (think Ava Gabor in Green Acres) adopt thousands of abandoned immigrant children and raise them in a plantation-style mansion. Too soon?
“The King and I” A bold gay love story, fashioned from the classic musical adaptation of Anna and the King of Siam. Here, an orange-haired American president falls madly in love with a North Korean dictator. The love-struck POTUS is entranced by the despot’s humor, his love of basketball, his panda-like physique, and a hair-style as novel as the President’s. There isn’t a dry eye in the house when Trump warbles the updated classic lyric: “He May Not Always Do, What You Would Have Him Do, but Now and Then He’ll Do — Something DANGEROUS.”
“The Wizard of Oz” Our innocent orange hero is swept up by in a storm to the magical land of D.C. Searching for Vlad the Great and Powerful to set him free, he is joined by three companions on their own quest: the brain-seeking Betty D., the courage-needing Jeff S., and the heart-lacking Stephen M. Along the way, they are supported by the jolly Munchkins (Paul Ryan and other House leaders in costumed disguise). Nancy Pelosi does a star turn as the Wicked Witch of the West, and the looming ghost of the ineffectual Oz the Munificent is played to a tee by Barack Obama. “Somewhere Over the Beltway” remains as touching a tune as the original.
“It’s a Wonderful Life” The holiday classic cleverly, and sympathetically, retold from the perspective of Mr. Potter, a plum case of type-casting for the lovably irritable President. George Bailey, played by a computer-transformed Joe Biden, is exposed as a bleeding heart “snowflake” who nearly bankrupts the Bedford Falls’ banking system. Loony elderly angel Clarence (Bernie Sanders) hears bells and considers himself an angel. Only Potter Estates prospers through the Bailey debacle, thanks to the record prices paid for its mansions by a bevy of Eastern European oligarchs (all somehow played by the versatile Paul Manafort, despite an encumbering ankle monitor).
“Seven Brides For Two Brothers” The rollicking musical chronicling the marriages past, present, and upcoming for D.C.’s most eligible illiterates, Donald Trump Jr. and Eric. The classic ensemble number, “Bless Your Beautiful Hide” now celebrates the brothers’ honeymoon trophy hunt wherein they bag multiple endangered species while cheating on their latest brides.
“Jared of Arabia” Trump is missing from this epic remake, but son-in-law Jared Kushner does a star-turn as unifier of the fractious tribes of the Mideast. Jared dons the hooded thwab over his keepah to assimilate with the rambunctious Arabs. Jared unites them in a brave quest to defeat the Iranian menace and pay for his own bankrupt apartment building, all, miraculously, without getting a daub of color on his pallid cheeks. His lovely wife Ivanka masterfully plays the camel Jared rides to fame and fortune.
“Les Mis” Seamlessly updated and adapted for American audiences. Starring Robert Mueller as the revenge-obsessed Inspector Javert, who relentlessly hunts down the virtuous star-crossed Jean Val Jean. Val Jean is played with heart-rending poignancy by Trump. An escaped felon, Val Jean remakes his life as a beloved politician. But Javert mercilessly hounds Val Jean for an ancient, minor crime of stealing an election. In the powerful and long-awaited denouement, Javert hurls himself (or is he pushed?) from the Washington Monument. Melania is a conspicuous consumption-riddled Eponene, while brave Cosette (Ivanka) is ever-loyal to her persecuted father. Not to be missed in his cameo role, is Steve Bannon as the slovenly innkeeper.
Of course there will be more. And it should have gone without saying, Trump himself will star in the reboot of “From Russia With Love.”