“I Can Be President: A Kid’s-Eye View”
Children Talk About the President
A diverse group of children talk about what they think it would be like to be president of the United States. They share what they think about what being president entails and through the kids we are reminded that one can always have dreams. The film that was originally shown on HBO is a sixty minute look at youngsters in elementary schools whose hopes are both very funny and yet very touching. The film brings it all to life through animation (the wonderful work of Michael Sporn). While the responses from the youngsters are simple, they are quite profound in their simplicity. They have something to say about diversity, war, being a leader and becoming an adult. I felt a promise for the future while listening to them.
Kids have hopes and dreams and many times these are just as significant as those that adults have. When a child wishes for free ice cream for all, he is saying something about equality. At first we might think that the responses are humorous but they are also promising and a look to the future. Kids understand about discrimination and they know that we do not have the right to discriminate. They know that Obama is our first black president—as one little girl says, “He was black and all the other past presidents were white. And even though he was different from the other past presidents, he still wanted to try because he wanted to do that job.” Another expresses a profound idea— being a better person now makes one a better person later in life. And yet another child says that once sworn into the presidency, she would be kind to all citizens.
We truly see the beauty of youth here and director-producer Diane Kolyer and director-producer-animator Michael Sporn have made quite an amazing little film. The kids are wonderful, the length of the film is just right and the animation is beautiful. But this is a kids’ movie and we are just invitees. We need more films like this— we learn then and youngsters are validated.