Now that Mamma Meryl is back in the news promoting her big new movie "Mamma Mia!," it's a perfect time to revisit this blog's ongoing celebration of the unstoppable actress. Last time, we took a look at one of Streep's other singing roles, in Mike Nichols' "Postcards from the Edge." Since that already paved the way for her forthcoming ABBA-belting blockbuster, let's focus on one of her less acknowledged supporting performances, in Jonathan Demme's 2004 update of "The Manchurian Candidate," which has relevance of a more political nature.
Streep reportedly modeled her character of twisted, power-hungry, soon-to-be White House mother-from-hell Eleanor Prentice Shaw after Hillary Clinton (the mannerisms, the hair, etc.). Now, it seems, Senator Clinton may have wanted to have modeled her own character after Ms. Streep's. For had she displayed the bloodthirsty zeal of this woman-on-a mission, there's no way some pesky senator from Illinois would have stood her way.
Apparently, Angela "Muder, She Wrote" Lansbury was a little miffed over the fact that Paramount decided to revamp the 1962 version of this movie, in which she played Streep's part. Tough noogies, Angie. Meryl is a canon in Demme's film, firing whenever crossed. I own the otherwise lackluster '04 "Candidate," simply for one 5-minute Streep-sational segment, which you're about to view right now (thanks to kimedes007 over at YouTube):