This film pushes The Treasure of the Sierra Madre out of the top spot for my favourite classic film. There’s something incredibly charming about Mr. Smith Goes to Washington – appealing to the adult in me with a commentary that rings eerily but unsurprisingly true after almost eighty years, and appealing to the child in me with humour and a naive and out-of-his-depth character I can relate to. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington gives a good insight into how I feel trying to get my head around House of Cards.
Despite its setting, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington isn’t just relatable for you Americans. It also hits particularly hard for Brits, given Mr. Smith’s background with a fictional version of the Boy Scouts – we know all too well what happens when a major political player is discovered to be spending a lot of his spare time with children. Fortunately, Jefferson Smith’s intentions are to pump young boys full of patriotism instead of bodily fluids.
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington has also been hailed as politically accurate – so much so that US politicians reportedly hated it for its portrayal of corruption, and it was even banned by several fascist states for proving that democracy works. Despite overlooking both of those key demographics, it immensely entertained me. I would go as far as awarding it the title of my favourite film on the list so far.