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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.

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Go deeper

Ohio sues Biden admin over reversal of Trump-era abortion referral ban

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost. Photo: Justin Merriman/Getty Images

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost filed a lawsuit against the Biden administration Monday over a Trump-era ban on abortion referrals that President Biden overturned earlier this month.

The big picture: The lawsuit aims to reinstate two measures included in the 2019 legislation that required federally funded family planning clinics to be "financially independent of abortion clinics," and refrain from referring patients for abortions.

Oklahoma Supreme Court temporarily blocks abortion restrictions

A pro-choice activist demonstrates outside the U.S. Supreme Court on Oct. 4, 2021. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Oklahoma Supreme Court on Monday temporarily blocked three abortion restrictions set to take effect on Nov. 1.

Why it matters: The laws would place new limits on medication-induced abortions and require doctors who perform abortions to attain board certification in obstetrics and gynecology.

U.S. freezes aid to Sudan over military coup

Protesting the coup in Khartoum. Photo: AFP via Getty

The Biden administration froze a $700 million aid package to Sudan after a military coup on Monday threatened to end the country's transition toward democracy.

Driving the news: At least three protesters have been killed and dozens wounded in the chaotic scenes that followed the announcements from Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the head of Sudan's ruling council, dissolving the government and declaring a state of emergency.