Directed by HIFF Award-Winning filmmaker Greg Barker (KORAN BY HEART, WE ARE THE GIANT), THE FINAL YEAR is a unique insider’s account of President Barack Obama’s foreign policy team during their last year in office. Featuring unprecedented access inside the White House and State Department, THE FINAL YEAR offers an uncompromising view of the inner workings of the Obama Administration as they prepare to leave power after eight years.
The film revolves around a foreign policy team assembled by Barack Obama nearly a decade ago, during his first presidential campaign: Secretary of State John Kerry, UN Ambassador Samantha Power, Deputy National Security Advisor and presidential confidant Ben Rhodes, as well National Security Advisor Susan Rice and President Obama himself. The film tracks this team over the course of 2016, as they travel the world attempting to solidify and “lock-in” policies that they believe will define their legacy, promote diplomacy over large-scale military action, and fundamentally alter how the US government confronts questions of war and peace.
The unfolding crisis in Syria (and Russia’s role), the resurgence of nationalism, and the results of the US election all challenge this legacy in unexpected and fundamental ways, leading the team to re-evaluate their lasting achievements as they prepare to hand-over the machinery of American power.