After Steve Bannon left the White House in 2017, he tried to turn his bombastic nationalism into a global movement and let a progressive documentarian follow him for more than a year — Arizona to Italy, Texas to France.

  • The result is "The Brink," a fly-on-the-wall, cinéma vérité film coming to theaters March 29, and being screened in D.C. on Tuesday.

Despite Bannon's extensive cooperation (and experience in the movie business), the WashPost's Steven Zeitchik wrote in conjunction with the Sundance Film festival premiere that the film is ultimately a "damaging portrait": "A number of moments seem to make the argument that Bannon's populism is a pose."

  • Variety said the film "sees right through his hate games."

"The Brink" follows Bannon through the midterms, "shedding light on his efforts to mobilize and unify far-right parties in order to win seats in the May 2019 European Parliamentary elections," according to the filmmaker, Magnolia Films.

  • "A keen manipulator of the press and gifted self-promoter, Bannon continues to draw headlines and protests wherever he goes, feeding the powerful myth on which his survival relies."

Director Alison Klayman says in a Q&A from the filmmaker [Corrects speaker]:

I overheard a lot of gross macho talk that was transphobic and anti-liberal, but I always tried to stay invisible and not make my gender a thing, even though I was the only woman present a lot of the time. ...
Bannon is a very old-fashioned guy, he would occasionally call me "dear," and it made me mad, but I just bit my tongue. I didn't want to be singled out as a woman filmmaker, but at the same time this movie was being made by two progressive women who are trying to capture systemic problems — it's a movie about men who want the traditional hierarchies that exist in the world to prevail.

Bannon, 65, who has seen the film, declined to comment on the record.

  • D.C. screening tomorrow: The filmmakers will participate in an advance screening of "The Brink" at Landmark's E Street Cinema on Tuesday, followed by a panel discussion with The Guardian’s Paul Lewis. To attend the 6pm reception and 7pm screening, RSVP here.

Film website.

Subscribe to Axios AM/PM for a daily rundown of what's new and why it matters, directly from Mike Allen.
Please enter a valid email.
Please enter a valid email.
Server error. Please try a different email.
Subscribed! Look for Axios AM and PM in your inbox tomorrow or read the latest Axios AM now.

Go deeper

Updated 46 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Fauci: Trump hasn't been to a COVID task force meeting in months — Trump claims COVID "will go away" during debate.
  2. Sports: The youth sports exodus continues — Big Ten football is back.
  3. Health: How to help save 130,000 livesFDA approves Gilead's remdesivir as treatment How the pandemic might endMany U.S. deaths were avoidable.
  4. Retail: Santa won't greet kids at Macy's this year.
  5. World: Spain and France exceed 1 million cases.
1 hour ago - Health

Fauci: Trump hasn't been to a COVID task force meeting in months

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

President Trump has not attended a White House coronavirus task force meeting in “several months,” NIAID director Anthony Fauci told MSNBC on Friday.

Why it matters: At the beginning of the pandemic, the task force, led by Vice President Mike Pence, met every day, but in the "last several weeks," members have held virtual meetings once a week, Fauci said, even as the number of new cases continues to surge in the country.

2 hours ago - Health

How to help save 130,000 lives

People wear face masks outside Grand Central Terminal in New York City. Photo: Noam Galai/Getty Images

Nearly 130,000 fewer people will die of COVID-19 this winter if 95% of Americans wear face masks in public, according to research published Friday.

Why it matters: “Increasing mask use is one of the best strategies that we have right now to delay the imposition of social distancing mandates," Dr. Christopher Murray of the University of Washington told the N.Y. Times.