History of the World According to the Movies: Part 85 – The Watergate Scandals

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The 1976 film All the President’s Men is perhaps the definitive film in relation to the events of the Watergate scandals. It stars Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman as two young Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein. Though not always true real events, this movie shows the first seven months in uncovering one of the biggest political scandals in American history that led to the fall of a US president. Yet, while it portrays the press as the hero, it was actually a group effort between journalists and government whistle blowers.

Perhaps no event in American history during the 1970s takes no more significance than the Watergate scandals of the Nixon administration. Political corruption has always existed in American politics even at the time of the founding Fathers (look it up). Yet, among all the political scandals in US history, Watergate remains the most infamous in which a midnight break-in gone wrong at the eponymous Washington DC hotel and office complex (at the Democratic National Committee headquarters, no less) would lead to a massive coverup of Richard Nixon and his administration once the burglars were found to have connections to Nixon’s reelection campaign. Watergate would then be the term that would cover an array of clandestine and often illegal activities undertaken by the Nixon administration including “dirty tricks” like bugging the offices of political opponents and people of whom Nixon or his officials were suspicious as well as ordering harassment of activists groups and political figures, using the FBI, CIA, and the IRS. When Congress discovered a conspiracy as well as multiple administration abuses, Nixon’s resistance would lead to a constitutional crisis, articles of impeachment, and Nixon resigning from the presidency leaving the office in disgrace. However, though there are some movies about the Watergate scandals, there are some things that these films get wrong which I shall list.

Richard Nixon:

Richard Nixon knew about the Watergate break-in before it happened. (Actually he didn’t until after it happened. Yet, since the burglars consisted of a CIA agent and were funded by his reelection campaign, Nixon became worried that the full extent of his illegal activities would be known. Thus, proceed with the coverup.)

Richard Nixon felt guilty about Watergate and had some regard for the law. (Nixon never felt sorry about Watergate and had little regard for the law to get what he wanted and had no qualms about covering up illegal activity. Yet, his lack of guilt had more to do with the fact that he was a power-hungry social climber all his life {with a horrible childhood to boot as well as had to make concessions in his life like going to Whittier College instead of Ivy League}. Sorry, Oliver Stone.)

At his resignation, Nixon said, “To leave office before my term is completed is abhorrent to every instinct in my body. I have never been a quitter.” (He actually said, “I have never been a quitter. To leave office before my term is completed is abhorrent to every instinct in my body.”)

Richard Nixon signed his resignation letter the day before he left office and prior to it being publicly announced. (Contrary to Nixon, he publically announced his resignation and signed the letter the next day before departing from the White House that noon.)
Robert Preston landed a helicopter on the White House Lawn the day before Richard Nixon answered with “the boil must be picked” in front of the House Judiciary Committee Subpoena for Additional Presidential Tape Recordings. (Contrary to The Assassination of Richard Nixon, these events happened a couple of months apart with the former in February and the latter in April of 1974.)

The key motive for the Watergate cover-up had a lot to do with Cold war politics and Richard Nixon’s pre-presidential involvement in the Kennedy Assassination. (Contrary to Nixon, the Watergate Scandals had nothing to do with either {and he certainly wasn’t involved with the CIA on the latter since Nixon had almost nothing political against John F. Kennedy except for beating him in a presidential race}. However, the cover up became necessary not because of anything Nixon did in the Eisenhower administration, but because his own presidential administration used government power {FBI, IRS, and CIA} illegally. Such conduct was so widespread, it was a habit. And when some of his own operatives were caught in the Watergate burglary, they were silenced before they led to what Nixon attorney general John Mitchell called, “the White House horrors.”)

The 1972 Election:

Richard M. Nixon described George McGovern as “that pansy, poet, socialist.” (Maybe, yet contrary to Nixon, the real McGovern says that “Nixon never once mentioned my name in public in the 1972 presidential campaign. He would neither debate me, nor appear on the same stage, or even in the same city. So I think my family was cheered to hear my name at long last on Mr. Nixon’s lips—courtesy of Oliver Stone and Anthony Hopkins.” Man, apart from the behind the scenes of the Nixon reelection campaign, the 1972 election must’ve been pretty boring. Also, to call McGovern a “pansy” is highly inaccurate since the guy was a freaking war hero {which he didn’t mention probably because he didn’t want Nixon’s guys to swiftboat him}.)

Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein:

Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein directly caused the fall of Richard Nixon. (Contrary to All the President’s Men, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein were just the messenger boys. The film ignores the contributions of various conscientious public servants. There’s Senator Sam Ervin whose select committee held the first congressional Watergate hearings and discovered the existence of the White House tapes. Then there’s Congressmen Peter Rodino who was chairman of the Judiciary Committee that approved 3 articles of impeachment against Nixon. Next you have the embarrassingly named Archibald Cox, the special prosecutor fired in the Saturday Night Massacre and his replacement Leon Jaworski. Finally, you have tough minded federal district court judge John Sirica who made it clear that he’d squeeze the burglars until they talked and the president until he turned over the tapes. It was collective action of the press, bureaucrats, and politicians that brought the fall of Nixon. And not all of them had pure motives to bring Nixon’s fall either as in the Mark Felt example. Of course, some of these guys are mentioned in the book but you’d understand that Bob Woodward has an ego a mile wide despite not being as attractive as Robert Redford. Carl Bernstein looks more like an emo version of Dustin Hoffman.)

The name of the lawyer who encountered Bob Woodward at the arraignment of the Watergate burglars was named “Markham.” (His name was Douglas Caddy.)

Herbert Sloan was reliable source for Carl Bernstein. (Contrary to All the President’s Men, their relationship was more complicated. The last minute conversation between Bernstein and Sloan resulted in a massive miscommunication that led to the printing that Sloan had implicated H. R. Haldeman to a Grand Jury {Sloan couldn’t verify the claims of Haldeman’s involvement in the Watergate burglary directly. Sloan’s lawyer would deny such claims}. Later the White House would denounce the Washington Post for “shabby journalism” and the newspaper’s investigation was greatly set back while it made the validity of the previous Watergate articles public. As for Woodward and Bernstein, it took them 5 weeks to regain credibility and publish another front page article.)

Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein worked like the perfect team during their time on the Watergate story. (While it’s implied in All the President’s Men, they had a rocky relationship, often fighting and disagreeing on the details of their stories. Also, after Nixon’s resignation, they split up and while they would collaborate on The Final Days and The Secret Man together, they pretty much didn’t collaborate much.)

Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein’s homes were bugged. (They weren’t as far as we know.)

Bob Woodward was a confident and take charge kind of guy. (Contrary to Robert Redford’s portrayal in All the President’s Men, he’s described in the book as “a registered Republican, was cautious, an awkward writer and shy interviewer.” Also, he had only been at The Washington Post for 8 months prior to Watergate and still had a lot to learn from his colleagues.)

Carl Bernstein was a shaggy chain-smoking journalist who almost seemed to stumble through his investigation at times. (Yes, he was but contrary to All the President’s Men, he’s described in the book as “brash, ready to take a chance, a polished writer and cunning interviewer.”)

Bob Woodward was blond. (His hair was as brown as a mahogany table.)

Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein were on the Watergate story for 7 months. (Their time on the story lasted for a year and a half.)

The Washington Post:

Barry Sussman played no role in breaking in the Watergate story. (While he’s absent in All the President’s Men, he was one of the major players since he was the first person of the Washington Post to pick up the Watergate story and would continue to write and edit stories about it for the duration. He would be a major supporter for Woodward and Bernstein.)

Washington Post managing editor Howard Simons was a passive man. (Contrary to All the President’s Men, he was an aggressive and outspoken reporter who supported Woodward and Bernstein throughout their entire story.)

Katherine Graham played little role in the Watergate story. (For God’s sake, she was the publisher of the Washington Post and she’s not portrayed in All the President’s Men at all. Sure most of the Washington Post employees were male during the 1970s but she was the one who helped the paper gain power and even helped its notoriety by publishing “The Pentagon Papers.” When Woodward and Bernstein were writing about the Watergate scandals, she had to defend the newspaper from attacks by the federal government and it was because of her leadership that the company managed to survive and flourish. Also, Graham was the person at the Washington Post who made the final decision to publish the Woodward and Bernstein’s stories.)

Deep Throat:

No one knew who Deep Throat was. (Deep Throat’s identity was an open secret for years even Nixon suspected that Mark Felt was leaking information to Bob Woodward but decided not to go after him. However, Mark Felt wasn’t a saint for it’s more likely that he leaked the information out of revenge against Nixon for not promoting him to replace J. Edgar Hoover. As Woodward would say, “Felt believed he was protecting the bureau by finding a way, clandestine as it was, to push some of the information from the FBI interviews and files out to the public, to help build public and political pressure to make Nixon and his people answerable. He had nothing but contempt for the Nixon White House and their efforts to manipulate the Bureau for political reasons.” Though Deep Throat’s identity was a mystery for over 30 years, Felt was the main candidate. Still, having Hal Holbrook portray him in All the President’s Men is actually a historically accurate approximation.)

Deep Throat was two ditzy teenage girls. (This was the premise for the comedy Dick, though it’s implausible. Also, Felt’s identity as Deep Throat wasn’t much of a mystery to many in Washington.)

Deep Throat wasn’t an informant for Bob Woodward until the Watergate scandal. (Though it’s implied in All the President’s Men, Mark Felt had passed information to Woodward a month before Watergate. Woodward’s story at the time was the attempted assassination of Governor and Presidential candidate George Wallace, a case that Felt was investigating. Also, contrary to the film, Felt didn’t approach Woodward on Watergate, Woodward called Felt in his office just days after the break-in.)

Donald Segretti:

Donald Segretti seemed like a decent guy who just happened to destroy Edward Muskie’s presidential campaign. (He was also a mentor to Karl Rove. Yes, old Turd Blossom himself.)

Donald Segretti felt regret for his actions in Watergate for he didn’t know what he had gotten himself into or the full extent of repercussions. (Contrary to All the President’s Men, Segretti was recruited for these dirty tricks and knew exactly what he was doing all along. According to a blog on the movie, “On 27th October, 1972, Time Magazine published an article claiming that it had obtained information from FBI files that Dwight Chaplin had hired Segretti to disrupt the Democratic campaign. The following month Carl Bernstein interviewed Segretti who admitted that E. Howard Hunt and Gordon Liddy were behind the dirty tricks campaign against the Democratic Party {Spartacus Educational}.” Perhaps Segretti was playing Bernstein for a sap in the film, but he certainly didn’t feel any regret at least until he got caught. By then, he just ratted out his co-conspirators.)

The Frost/Nixon Interviews:

Richard Nixon apologized to David Frost about Watergate. (Contrary to Frost/Nixon, Nixon’s team prepared a confession but when it came down to the interview, Nixon couldn’t bring himself to say it until his staff had to coax him.)

Richard Nixon and David Frost discussed Watergate on the last night of the Nixon interviews. (They discussed it on the first night. Also, Frost/Nixon ignores the fact that Nixon received 20% of the ad revenue from the interviews enticing him to want to get more people to watch it. Also, the ratings for the interviews dropped dramatically after all the Watergate material had been discussed and he didn’t admit anything that wasn’t public knowledge.)

David Frost and Richard Nixon didn’t meet before the Frost/Nixon interviews of 1976. (They first met in 1968 when Nixon was running for president. Apparently, Nixon enjoyed the interview so much that after he was elected, he met Frost at the White House to discuss producing a TV special.)

David Frost thought Richard Nixon did a terrible job on the first three interviews. (Frost thought that Nixon did a great job.)

Nixon confessed to David Frost about Watergate. (He didn’t but he did apologize for disappointing the American people. Also, many people thought Nixon got the best of David Frost during the interviews.)

Richard Nixon made a late night telephone call to David Frost just before their last interview. (The late night telephone call in Frost/Nixon never happened.)

Jack Brennan was a humorless military man who had no problem bullying and threatening people in order to protect Nixon’s image. (Though he was a former Marine, he was known to be friendly and good natured person as well as quite funny. It was also said that Brennan might have been able to talk Nixon out of Watergate if he had served on his staff during the latter’s presidency.)

Miscellaneous:

TV reporter Sally Aiken claimed that Ken Clawson wrote the infamous “Canuck Letter.” (Her name was Marilyn Berger yet All the Presidents Men {the book} states that it was a female bookkeeper who isn’t named anyway so that could be forgiven.)

“The bookkeeper” wasn’t a particularly bright woman who didn’t play a vital role in uncovering the Watergate story. (While All the President’s Men downplays her role in the scandal, she was a very smart woman who played a critical role as a bookkeeper for Nixon’s reelection campaign under Maurice Stans. She had direct access to accounts and what was being done in spite of Richard Nixon. She contacted the FBI considerably earlier than her boss Herbert Sloan, informed investigators about money being disbursed to G. Gordon Liddy and others, along with the shredding of the ledgers and important documents that would incriminate the committee. Her name was Judy Hoback and Carl Bernstein probably didn’t have to speak very softly to her or use the first letters of her last name to coax verification of Nixon campaign members involved in illegal actions.)

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History of the World According to the Movies: Part 84 – 1970s America

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Of course, disco wasn’t the only popular music genre and was actually a craze in the later 1970s yet perhaps because of the 1977 Saturday Night Fever with John Travolta, this is how we remember the 1970s. Sure this may now be a dated look into 1970s hedonistic culture to my Millennial viewers who may not believe that Travolta was actually skinny, but as far as movie history goes, it’s an essential even if it’s not very good and more like a 1970s version of Magic Mike without the stripping involved. Or that seeing John Travolta in polyester may make you feel uncomfortable.

YOLO may be a 21st century term but it definitely characterizes the attitude of the 1970s when love was free and the “Me” decade was in full swing with self-esteem, self-discovery, and individual identity. Of course, there’s the bit of environmentalism and animal rights as well as feminism and hippies which are still around from the 1960s. Also, this is a time when people use recreational drugs, get divorced, cohabitate, and you name it. Of course, costume designers love this time since nowhere is the YOLO spirit of the 1970s demonstrated in fashion. Many men wore polyester leisure suits with flaring trousers and cuffs while sporting their heavily sprayed manicured hair and sideburns and/or the handle bar mustache we tend to associate with porno movies. Many women wore feathered Farrah Fawcett hair and slinky dresses with no bras. Those who could grow a poofy afro did. Still, the 1970s was a turbulent decade with terrorism, economic duress, energy crises, crime, political scandals, you name it. Also, the Cold War is dying down but it’s still showing no signs of slowing down.

Still, in the United States, while the Vietnam War winded down in the early part of the decade, the economy would be on the decline with the rise of the rust belt and the laissez faire kind of economics dependent on the banking industry that would dominate the next few decades which would end with the 2008 recession. You have the energy crisis which raised the price of gas and encouraged people to save energy and protect the environment. Yet, when it abated people forgot about it and then had gas guzzling cars like there’s no tomorrow. You also have the big political scandal extravaganza like Watergate as well as fashions and mores may seem cool by their standards but would lead to lifelong embarrassment in later generations particularly when the young people of this time get married and reproduce (I’m talking to you, Dad). Still, American movies and music flourish in this era with creative filmmakers like Steven Spielberg and Martin Scorsese, science fiction movies we can take seriously, and some of the greatest music ever made that will be cherished for generations. And no, I don’t mean disco music but it’s up there, sort of. TV would also take strides as well with M*A*S*H, Sesame Street, The Electric Company (which featured a little known actor by the name of Morgan Freeman. Yes, that Morgan Freeman), Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, Saturday Night Live, and The Muppet Show. Still, you have more women entering the workforce as well as the gays rising with single parenthood no longer taboo. There are a lot of movies made at this time which contain their share of inaccuracies I shall list.

Richard Nixon:

Richard Nixon was an alcoholic. (I’m not sure about this but apparently Oliver Stone believes so.)

Richard Nixon gave Leonoid Brezhnev with a Lincoln Continental at Casa Pacifica. (Contrary to Frost/Nixon, he presented a Lincoln Continental to Brezhnev at Camp David in 1973.)

Richard Nixon was conservative. (He styled himself as a Cold War centrist whose healthcare plan may have been more liberal than Barack Obama’s {which Ted Kennedy opposed but later regretted calling it “the biggest mistake of his career.” Yet, many would beg to differ, as we remember Chappaquiddick} as well as supported the failed Equal Rights Amendment. He’d also start the EPA, Amtrak, and OSHA, increase benefits for government programs, expand desegregation, and ended forced assimilation for Native Americans. Yet, he did start the War on Drugs and cut spending for NASA. Still, if Nixon wasn’t such a dick, he may have been a great president.)

Richard Nixon was a big potty mouth. (He swore, yes. But Jack Brennan never knew of a time when Nixon dropped a single F-bomb. “Expletive deleted” might’ve consisted of “hell” and “damn.” Besides, Lyndon B. Johnson may have been much worse, profanity wise.)

Pat Nixon:

Pat Nixon was an alcoholic with a pill addiction. (This is grossly exaggerated in Nixon yet, you can understand why the Nixon daughters hated it.)

Harvey Milk:

Harvey Milk’s publicity stunt with scooping up dog poop was real. (It was staged which Milk doesn’t mention.)

Most of Harvey Milk’s supporters were young, gay, white men. (Actually contrary to Milk, they consisted of gays of all ages, shapes, sizes, creeds, and colors as well as senior citizens {ironically}, people with disabilities, ethnic minorities, and women. He fought for their causes with great passion for their concerns, too along with those of gay men. Call his support base a rainbow coalition if you will. “He stood for something more than just him” as one commentator put it, but Harvey Milk has become so identified as a gay icon that he’s mostly associated with gay rights which is fair. Not to mention, his tenure in elected office lasted less than a year. Still, Sean Penn was perfect as Milk despite being straight and not so loveable and his Oscar was much deserved.)

Dan White:

San Francisco Supervisor Dan White was a closeted homosexual. (While Milk implies this, there’s no suggestion that this might have been true, but let’s just say his rampage at San Francisco’s City Hall wasn’t due to chemicals found in Twinkies but mental instability and professional jealousy. Still, Dan White was able to get away with manslaughter with his defense arguing that the killings of Harvey Milk and George Moscone weren’t premeditated {when they totally were} as well as having a jury that his all white, conservative, and straight. Still, San Francisco responded strongly to the Milk and Moscone’s murders since it shortly after the Jonestown Massacre and the killing of US Representative Leo Ryan {the only Congressman to be killed in the line of duty}.)

Dan White’s lawyers argued that consumption of junk food caused a chemical imbalance in his brain. (His lawyers had psychologists say that he was clinically depressed which led to him consuming vast amounts of junk food. However, I think he was just a crazy guy.)

Dan White’s first child was born in January 1978. (His son was born in June, yet Harvey Milk did attend the boy’s christening despite White’s grudge against him.)

Karen Silkwood:

Karen Silkwood was naïve and not quite bright. (A lot of people Karen Silkwood knew weren’t very happy with Meryl Streep’s portrayal of her. According to her father from a People magazine article, “The movie made her look not very bright and a hick Tobacco Road type. Karen was brilliant. She was an A student. I’ll tell you what happened. The lawyers were scared of that damn movie, and [director] Mike Nichols didn’t stick to his guns.” A union official who worked with her said the film portrayed her as more naïve and less political savvy than she really was.)

Sheri Ellis:
Sheri Ellis was a moody lesbian who might’ve betrayed Karen Silkwood. (The real Sheri Ellis was miffed at such insinuation that appeared in Silkwood. After her roommate’s death she invaded the Kerr-McGee plant with a .22 rifle that turned out to be unloaded. Like Silkwood, she was also exposed to radiation on a daily basis and she shared an apartment with her {which had to be decontaminated in which the process took three months}, not a house. Ellis was also fired from Kerr-McGee a few months later for flying a paper airplane in the plant according to her. Still, she didn’t mind being portrayed as a lesbian though but she declined to reveal her sexual orientation.)

Patch Adams:

Patch Adams was just a funny doctor who believed that laughter was the best medicine. (Contrary to the Robin Williams film, Adams’s ideas amounted to much more than that such as having loving and caring doctors as well as sending clowns into war zones, refugee camps, and orphanages. Not only that but he also believed in free care. In fact, his Gesuntheidt Institute was the main reason Adams wanted the film to be made, since he needed money. )

Patch Adams tried to kill himself while he was a middle aged man. (Contrary to the biopic, he was 17 to 18 years old, yet it’s more believable to have him in a mid-life crisis as played by Robin Williams rather as a kid who’s life had just gone through a shitty adolescence such as his dad dying while stationed in Germany, having to adjust to civilian life in Virginia, his uncle and father figure committing suicide while Patch was in college, and his high school girlfriend breaking up with him. Not only that, but he received the nickname, “Patch” by a fellow patient he had befriended who “patched up” the loneliness in his life, not a psychiatrist. He was also hospitalized in a mental institution on 3 separate occasions. So in medical school, he wouldn’t have been much older than most of his peers.)

Patch Adams met his girlfriend Connie Fisher in medical school who was murdered. (Actually his girlfriend was his future wife Linda Edquist with whom he had children with and divorced in 1998. As to the person he knew who was killed, it was actually his best friend who was a guy.)

While in medical school, Patch Adams practiced without a license and stole medical supplies. (Contrary to the Robin Williams movie, the real Patch Adams never did these things which would be considered felonies.)

Sports:

Billy Martin was the manager for the New York Yankees in 1972. (He was the manager of the Detroit Tigers at this time and wouldn’t manage the Yankees until 1975.)

The Baltimore Bullets moved the Washington DC in the early 1970s. (They didn’t move there until after 1974 and displaying support for them wouldn’t be seen cool in DC during the Nixon administration.)

Dickie Eklund knocked down Sugar Ray Leonard in a 1978 fight. (Contrary to The Fighter, he didn’t and says so nowadays though he’d brag about it for years. Most likely, he more or less tripped Leonard but the latter won anyway by a unanimous decision.)

Muhammad Ali:

Angelo Dundee was at Muhammad Ali’s Ali-Quarry fight. (This was the only fight Dundee wasn’t with him.)

Muhammad Ali sat down after each round against George Foreman. (Contrary to Ali, he wouldn’t sit down during the fight at the end of the film. I hope Ali didn’t get grilled, get it.)

Before the Ali/Foreman fight, Muhammad Ali had an argument with his wife Sonji of him seeing Veronica. (Contrary to Ali, it happened before the 3rd round of the Ali/Frazier fight “The Thrilla in in Manila” in 1975. And it wasn’t with Sonji because they were divorced by this point. Rather it was with his second wife Belinda.)

Music:

“Fooled Around And Fell In Love” was a hit in 1970. (It was released in 1976.)

Joe Walsh’s “Life’s Been Good” was hit in 1976. (It was released in 1978.)

Kool and the Gang’s “Celebration” was a popular hit in 1974. (It was released in 1980.)

Steely Dan was a popular group in 1971. (Their first album came out in 1972.)

Bobby Darin:

Sandra Dee stayed with Bobby Darin in the hospital when he was dying in 1973. (She was in an alcohol induced denial at home and was passed out on the floor that her family had to break into her house to find her and notify her of Darin’s death. Also, Darin’s second wife was banished from his room because she couldn’t hold her tears {she’s not in Beyond the Sea though}.)

Tina Turner:

Tina Turner attempted suicide in 1974. (Contrary to What’s Love Got to Do with It, she attempted suicide before a show in LA in 1969 shortly after she learned a friend and fellow Ikette was pregnant with Ike Turner’s child.)

Tina Turner addressed the courtroom to keep her stage name. (According to an interview with Oprah, she said her lawyer did after Tina advised him to drop a potential financial support suit as their divorce dragged on for a year.)

The Runaways:

Joan Jett wore leather pants throughout her career. (Contrary to The Runaways, she said she never did but only wore jeans.)

Joan Jett wrote “I Love Rock n Roll.” (Jake Hooker wrote it.)

Television:

Carol Kane was on the first season of Taxi. (She wasn’t on the show until the second season.)
Andy Kaufman:

Andy Kaufman was the host of SNL’s first episode. (Contrary to Man on the Moon, it was George Carlin.)

Lorne Michaels asked the home viewing audience to vote Andy Kaufman off SNL. (This happened in in 1982 while Michaels wasn’t on the show. He’d return in 1985.)

Andy Kaufman did his Jimmy Carter impression before SNL began. (Contrary to Man on the Moon, Kaufman couldn’t have done this since before the election of 1976, Jimmy Carter was a virtual unknown outside Georgia. Kaufman was from Long Island. Also, SNL began in 1975.)

Andy Kaufman met his girlfriend Lynn while wrestling women on The Merv Griffin Show. (Contrary to Man on the Moon, they met between 1981-82 when his “wrestling” career was dying down. Actually they met during the filming of My Breakfast With Blassie.)

Hollywood:

Deep Throat made $600 million at the box office. (Contrary to Lovelace, according to Roger Ebert, “Since the mob owned most of the porn theaters in the pre-video days and inflated box office receipts as a way of laundering income from drugs and prostitution, it is likely, in fact, that ‘Deep Throat’ did not really gross $600 million, although that might have been the box office tally.” Still, none of the money made went to Linda Lovelace.)

John Wayne died in 1978. (He died in 1979.)

Hugh Hefner was in his 30s in 1972. (Contrary to Lovelace, he was in his forties, but he’s portrayed in the film by James Franco.)

Linda Lovelace:

Chuck Traynor sold Linda Lovelace to five men for a gang bang after the Deep Throat premiere. (Contrary to Lovelace, while both the real Linda Lovelace and Traynor did say that happened {but while Lovelace claimed it was rape, Traynor said she wanted to do it}, it may have took place at the beginning of their marriage before Deep Throat, before their marriage, before fame.)

Porn was a complete hell for Linda Lovelace. (Contrary to Lovelace, the real Linda Lovelace didn’t see doing porn as the worst part of her life. Her relationship with Chuck Traynor was complete hell from the beginning and would never improve. She would be stuck in that really terrible relationship for years and endure a ton of abuse. While porn may not be a recommended career for anyone, Lovelace’s work in the porn industry and her gradual rise as a porn star would allow her more independence as well as gave her a life chance to escape. She always said that Deep Throat was “at once a low point and a salvation.”)

Bruce Lee:

Demons were the cause of Bruce Lee’s early death. (Contrary to Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story, they weren’t nor was his death the result of a family curse. His death was more likely due to an adverse reaction to a prescription painkiller called Equagesic {now banned in the UK} given to him by Betty Ting Pei and Nepal hashish marijuana {that he ingested, not smoked}, which is said to be near lethal. He might’ve been allergic to marijuana but let’s just say Betty Ting Pei’s idea of giving him a Equagesic tablet wasn’t a good idea. Not to mention, he’s said to be on anabolic steroids.)

Betty Ting Pei was Bruce Lee’s mistress. (Well, she’s believed to be his mistress but it’s unconfirmed.)

Miscellaneous:

There were an army of policemen present at the 1970 Syracuse University strike who attacked the students with their nightsticks. (Contrary to Born on the Fourth of July, according to New York Democratic state senator Nancy Larraine Hoffmann, a former student who participated in the strike, “It was totally unlike the characterization in the movie. There was no police presence even within sight. At no time was there any show of force, or any attempt to disperse students listening to speakers. It troubles me to see police officers maligned for Hollywood sensationalism.”)

Vietnamese immigration was unlimited in 1973. (It was limited to families of servicemen until 1975.)

President Jimmy Carter suffered from heat exhaustion in 1976. (He suffered from heat exhaustion in 1979. Also, as of 1976, he wasn’t president yet.)

Swifty Lazaar of CBS was much younger than Richard Nixon. (He was six years older than Nixon but Toby Jones is 30 years younger than Frank Langella.)

HBO was around during the 1970s. (Not until the 1980s.)

USA Today was around in 1970. (It’s first issue was in 1982.)

Ms. Pac-Man was around in 1978. (She wasn’t around until the 1980s.)

Wayne Dyer wrote The Power of Intention during the 1970s. (He wrote the book in 2004, yet Jennifer Lawrence cites this all the time in American Hustle.)

New York City bridges had blue necklace lights during this time. (Not until the Manhattan Bridge Reconstruction Program of 1982.)

The Boys and Girls Club of America existed at this time. (Yes, but it was just the Boys Club of America. It wouldn’t’ go by its present name until 1990.)

Food labels had “Nutrition Facts” on them during this time. (Not until 1994.)

The Advocate was a magazine in the 1970s. (It was a tabloid newspaper at this time. It would become a magazine in 1992.)

The New York City Rockettes had a black member in the 1970s. (They didn’t have a black member until 1988.)

Lever doorknobs existed in 1971 in most public buildings in the United States. (Not until the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.)

The Met Life building existed during the early 1970s. (Yes, but it was known as the Pan Am building.)

The World Finance Center and the World Trade Center were around in 1971. (The World Trade Center was just being constructed while the World Finance Center hadn’t been built yet.)