Trump, Hillary, Bernie…

Yes, goddammit, it’s another election year.

And it’s a good time to beef yourself up with some of the great political films of the past.

Last night, I revisited one of my favorite, little-seen, 1980s movie classics — the late Robert Altman’s Secret Honor.

I saw the original stage production starring Philip Baker Hall (remember him as Seinfeld’s library cop?) in 1984 at the Los Angeles Actors’ Theater, a teeny 35-seat auditorium tucked away on a side street off Hollywood Boulevard. Hall’s one-man show was loud, profane, savage, and amazingly sympathetic. And I’ve always felt grateful that his “Nixon” was eventually captured on film. The movie sprung out of Altman’s University of Michigan filmmaking class and is a perfect translation of the Donald Freed/Arnold M. Stone stage play to film.

Secret Honor is phenomenal. It offers a conspiratorial view of history, one that most radical libertarians will have no problem embracing, and the script brims with the in-depth research material that Freed is known for. In a way, this movie is complemented nicely by Oliver Stone’s 1995 film Nixon. Secret Honor portrays the infamous president as a simple player in a grander scheme, a puppet of the notorious, big-money “Bohemian Grove.” And his lonely, post-resignation “testimony,” delivered late one night at his retreat, pulls his whole political career into frightening focus.

If you’ve never seen Secret Honor, rush out and rent it immediately. Or do as I did more than a decade ago — buy a copy of Criterion’s DVD, which includes full-length commentaries by Altman and Freed, an interview with Hall, and about an hour’s worth of old Nixon film clips, including his Checkers and resignation speeches.

The movie is not only worth viewing as a terrific film. It’s worth studying.