Lincoln (2012) R

In a refreshing approach, Lincoln is depicted as a charming, witty and very down-to-earth guy.  Although the filmmakers view him very affectionately, there isn’t the god-like reverence of some of the earlier Lincoln films.  The controversial Lincoln of reality is better depicted this time.  Instead of trying to cover his entire career, the producer chose to focus in one very specific moment of Lincoln’s career.  This is the battle surrounding the ratifying of the 13th amendment.  Lincoln is shown as a deft political operator as he gently pushes and prods people to get the amendment passed.  He sensed that the moment was ripe for reform and would let nothing stop him.  Stellar performances were given by Daniel-Day Lewis and Sally Field.  The film was shot at the Virginia state capitol in Richmond.  Despite attempts to disguise them, modern displays and later statues are still visible in the room.  There are also some mistakes with props and costumes that are not from the correct era.  Lincoln was also considerably taller than the actor that portrayed him.  He did not fit in the bed where they lay him after the assassination, for example.  The film is useful as an educational tool, but a lot of background would have to be provided to make the story comprehensible.

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