City Paper is not for tourists
So you’ve read All the President’s Men, and you’ve seen the movie, and the only thing that’ll satisfy your ongoing craving for Nixonabilia is a collection of the home movies filmed by three of his most crooked aides. Well, you’re in luck. Richard Nixon chief of staff H.R. Haldeman, domestic affairs adviser John Ehrlichman, and special assistant Dwight Chapin all happened to be Super 8 junkies who compulsively filmed their personal and professional lives before they were thrown in jail during the Watergate scandal. The films sat in a government vault for 40 years; now, paired with cheery ’60s music and bits of the phone conversations Nixon obsessively recorded, they’ve been spliced together into a documentary to give you your Nixon fix. The film provides a glimpse into the careless ebullience with which the young Nixon administration began, and the paranoid cynicism with which it collapsed. Most of the footage itself ranges from mundane to mildly amusing, but the picture of the thinking in the White House it helps complete is valuable.