For director Oliver Stone, the story of George W. Bush is a tragic tale of family rivalry, misspent youth, near redemption and ultimate failure. It’s all told from a personal, not a political, point of view which humanizes, though never legitimizes, the 43rd president. Josh Brolin, as Bush, gives a performance that goes way beyond impersonation, though it is that, too. Underneath the cowboy brio, the alcohol-fueled swagger and the later, faith-based sense of assurance, there is a deep insecurity that the movie suggests has driven Bush all his life. Brolin makes this uneasiness the center of each of his scenes, whether Bush is challenging his father (an excellent James Cromwell) over his father’s preference for his brother Jeb or protesting too much to Vice President Dick Cheney (Richard Dreyfuss, doing a variation on Dr. Evil) that he, not Cheney, is really in charge. Like Stone’s best films, W. is brilliantly edited, flashing back and forth in time in a way that connects early choices with later implications. When the movie cuts from an early party scene to an awkward interview decades later, for instance, it makes you wonder if Bush’s penchant for malaprops – his Bushisms – might be rooted in the slurred speech of a drunk.