The Final Year is both a love letter and gut punch to the Obama presidency

As it did to many things, the election of Donald Trump transformed The Final Year from what should have been a triumph into a tragedy. The documentary follows—and frequently lionizes—three Obama officials throughout 2016, and frequently feels like it was intended as a well-deserved victory lap. Secretary Of State John…

How does a filmmaker get access to the White House?

For the documentary The Final Year, filmmaker Greg Barker followed President Barack Obama’s foreign policy team as it attempted to shape international policy in the last year of his presidency. After the film’s premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, we spoke with Barker and two members of Obama’s foreign…

Former White House staffer explains why Casablanca’s Rick is the perfect spy

In The Final Year, filmmaker Greg Barker followed President Barack Obama’s foreign policy team as it attempted to shape international policy in the last year of his presidency. After the film’s premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, we spoke with Barker and two members of that foreign policy…

We asked Obama staffers: What do civilians not understand about the presidency?

In The Final Year, filmmaker Greg Barker followed President Barack Obama’s foreign policy team as it attempted to shape international policy in the last year of his presidency. After the film’s premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, we spoke with Barker and two members of that foreign policy…

Former Obama staffers discuss Trump’s attempts to undo their foreign policy work

In The Final Year, filmmaker Greg Barker followed President Barack Obama’s foreign policy team as it attempted to shape international policy in the last year of his presidency. But in just nine months since his inauguration, Donald Trump has tried to undo the work done by the Obama administration, for example, …

Former Obama staffers talk about Trump’s impact on how America is viewed

In The Final Year, filmmaker Greg Barker followed President Barack Obama’s foreign policy team as it attempted to shape international policy in the final year of his presidency. Although the documentary was filmed just last year, the United States’ position in the world has changed dramatically, with Trump dismantling…

We ask George Clooney, Emma Thompson, and other TIFF stars: What’s your all-time favorite movie?

For over 40 years, the Toronto International Film Festival has attracted some of the best filmmakers in the world to showcase the biggest films of the year. This year’s festival saw the release of Darren Aronofsky’s wildly controversial Mother! and the James Franco-directed The Disaster Artist. Past festival winners…