Tim Pawlenty is out with a new movie, er, announcement.

The former Republican governor of Minnesota, home of my alma mater (Carleton College) and Rep. Michele Bachmann (R), is forming a presidential exploratory committee. But he couldn't just put out a dry press release or gather around a rickety lectern in some sad ballroom somewhere near Lake Minnetonka. Nope. Pawlenty wants to grab you by the throat through your computer screen with a video awash in Americana, loud music and applause that leaves you kinda hoping either Matt Damon or Morgan Freeman might make a cameo.

After Pawlenty lists three things he says needs to be done -- "grow jobs, limit government spending and tackle entitlements" -- he makes his pitch:

This country was founded on freedom. We, the people of the United States, will take back our government. This is our country. Our Founding Fathers created it. Americans embraced it. Ronald Reagan personified it. And Lincoln stood courageously to protect it. And that’s why today, I'm announcing the formation of an exploratory committee, to run for President of the United States. Join the team and together, we'll restore America.

If the mood seems familiar, it should. Pawlenty employed the same tactic (and filmmaker, apparently) to publicize his autobiography. “Courage to Stand.”

The two trailers are crammed with fluttering flags, jet fly-overs, disembodied applause, handshakes, smiling faces of people you don’t know but who look really nice, and stirring music that make you think at once of a Bourne movie and Forrest Gump. People can’t be blamed for liking the tune he’s singing.He looks great and sounds great. We'll find out in due course whether he sounds as good live as he does in the studio.