I saw it last night, the theater was full.
Daniel Day Lewis should win the Oscar, his performance was phenomenal. He made Lincoln a flesh and blood human being.
Beautiful to look at, and the details that went into historical accuracy were exceptional.
I thought that Kushner went a bit overboard in the ornate language. People don't talk in the same way that they write.
Haven't seen it, but I am sure it is in his usual over-the-top, music going throughout style and then everybody cries and cries. Ugh, American dreck and surely with a sequel.
I checked my watch and at about 90 minutes, I was wondering where all of this was going. It was kind of dragging along. I noticed two couples seated near me who got up and walked out in the middle of the movie.
If I could catch up those folks, I would advise them to sit tight. The second half of the movie is when things really get going and it's very entertaining.
I thought the movie should have ended with the shot of Lincoln walking down the hallway, his silhouette framed by the archway of the window. We all know where he was going and what happened next.
Instead, Spielberg tacked on that extra two minutes that was really not necessary.
alot of the events in this were predictable. the vampire hunter treatment had more surprises.
When the film ended, the audience broke into applause.
I've only seen that happen twice in the past 20 years -- in 2002 for Chicago, and in 1993 for Schindler's List.
People applauded Schindler's List? I remember everyone sitting in silence. Anywhoo--I wanna see it today. Will check in later.
It is a great movie.
First, lest I sound like a freeper, I'll tell you my objections, which are not insubstantial. It has a few big problems, as is often the case with a Spielberg film. The man just doesn't know when to stop. Slade's prescient look at Lincoln as he exits to go to the theater is a conventional "He's about to die" telegraph that is beneath the rest of the movie. The movie should end about 5 minutes before it does because it goes on after it reaches its optimal point and has nothing else to offer. The film makes a lot of choices which do not comport with history, some of which are justifiable on cinematic terms, others are not.
Most importantly, the film leaves out Fredrick Douglass and three of its black characters, Slade, Keckley and Smith, were much more interesting people and important to the story it is telling than the movie makes it out. The film ignores the importance of Washington's black community at the time and the important - not passive - role black Americans took in the passing of the 13th Amendment. The semiotics of Stevens' giving the bill to Smith at the end of the movie are, to say the least, unfortunate.
Ok, having said all of that..... the movie is astonishingly good on its own terms. With those exceptions, Kushner's script is consistently brilliant. Day-Lewis is commanding, witty, giving his best performance ever - which is saying something. Field gives a restrained intelligent performance and has some of her best scenes - her confabulation with Stevens t the reception is movie magic - ever on screen. Tommy Lee jones, James Spader, Hal Holbrook should all get oscar nominations (although Jones may likely be the only one who does). And the design is gorgeous.
Considering the last sounds heard were gunshots, I don't think spontaneous applause is the most appropriate response.
I liked all the foreshadowing of an Obama presidency. It drove the right wingers in the audience nuts.
Nobody does cloying pablum like Steven Spielberg. "Lincoln" would've been so much better if it had been directed by Ang Lee or Stephen Daldry.
I've seen Day-Lewis in several films; he is brilliant. I'm not a fan of unions per se nor some ridiculous pro-America, all the time type person; I've traveled in Europe, lived in Canada.
BUT: I guess it's just me? There were no American actors to play England? Takes a Brit to do it? (Brit or Irish; sorry, forget which.)
This is probably WAY trivial, sorry.
Does Spielberg explore Lincoln's racism towards black people, that he considered them inferior to whites?
R14, cast a random net over any group of white people in 1865 and try to find one who didn't believe blacks were inferior. It was the times.
[quote] her confabulation with Stevens t the reception is movie magic
Fuck off with your slander, r11. Extremely disrespectful.
r15, nothing r14 wrote disputes what you say.
That wasn't his/her question. Nice deflection though.
I agree with R4. The movie opened with a view of Lincoln from the back, and the movie should have ended with the view of Lincoln walking away from us. The rest of the movie was unnecessary. But I loved the movie, and I'll see it again. Daniel Day Lewis was magnificent and honestly that entire cast was amazing. Great acting.
I also agree with R8 in part,especially about the scene with Tommy Lee Jones, unnecessary, but as for the other objection, this was a movie about Lincoln and not about abolitionist movement and their role in passing the 13th Amendment.
Having said that, I thought the fact that Speilberg had Black people come into the gallery to witness the final vote, while touching, seemed a hasty acknowledgement which required further explanation.
As for the dialogue, I felt it was fine. It was important to use their words whenever possible and Kushner did an effective job of weaving them in with his own dialogue.
At first I thought I wouldn't like the stilted style, but I quickly got used to it and didn't even pay attention to it. Speilberg did an amazing job of blending an almost dreamlike quality,and a gritty reality.
What he did with the lighting and cameras was pure genius. I can overlook the excesses. They were minor, and the movie as a whole was absolutely outstanding. Even Sally Field. She really stepped up.
The audience applauded at my showing, too.
Just a brilliant movie.And yes, I teared up several times.
Loved it, but there was no point in showing Lincoln's head after he's shot, then ET coming out with his lit finger saying "Ouuuch."
Does Sally get a mad scene?
Now that he's unemployed, perhaps Mitt Romney can play John Wilkes Booth in the sequel.
[quote} Fuck off with your slander, [R11]. Extremely disrespectful.
Eh? This is a gay site where we talk HONESTLY about history rather than trying to whitewash same-sex love affairs, asshole.
The film is about Lincoln and his tactics for getting the 13th amendment passed.
It's not about his sexuality.
I laughed my ass off when Joshua Speed (played by Eric Bana) is like, "Abe....come to bed, Abe. It's good for what ails you."
Isn't it called "The Sally Field Programme featuring Lincoln"?
[quote]Fuck off with your slander, [R11]. Extremely disrespectful.
I'm not even gay, nor should I have to be to know you're an asshole for considering it "slander." Slander is claiming he raped someone or was a child molester.
Speculating that he may have been bi or even gay is not slander.
It's only offensive in that the log cabin Republicans exist.
R6 you must have been with a very strange audience who applauded at Schindler's List. IMHO it was the most depressing movie I had ever seen. Good, and worth seeing again...but, deeply saddening and depressing. (And I'm not German or Jewish).
Audience applauded at my showing last night too. Theater was half full in conservative suburban Atlanta. I thought the acting was incredible. A friend thought the movie dragged a little but I enjoyed the whole thing. Daniel Day Lewis and Sally Field were particularly wonderful.
I plan on seeing it. Did the movie touch on his apparent homosexual relationship with C.A. Tripp?
What is this applauding at movies thing? In the UK here and have never seen it happen in my life.
R32 When I was in the UK, I never saw sunshine.
R32, I've seen it happen in America, if a movie is exceptionally moving or uniquely entertaining, the audience will applaud when the credits start rolling. I saw the audience applaud last year at a screening of The Artist.
Full disclosure: while the artist was beautiful to look at and sported fine performances, it ultimately bored me silly.
[quote]In the UK here and have never seen it happen in my life.
Well, if it's not done in the UK, then it has to be forbidden everywhere.
All countries must take their cues from the UK.
No, you fucking twat R36. Just have never seen it before.
Go back to applauding your latest Kevin James movie like a brain damaged seal.
It didn't match the hype and gushing reviews, but it was entertaining. Daniel Day Lewis was brilliant. I thought Sally Field was miscast and really didn't hold her own with Day Lewis at all.
The performance of Lewis was pretty amazing, as were most of the other performances. The film could've been shaved by 30 minutes easily, and was way TOO talky.
[quote] Does Sally get a mad scene?
Kind of actually. Her mental state is not ignored.
I thoroughly enjoyed Lincoln. I was mesmerized by the performances and Oscar worthy script. It's not perfect, but it's still quite remarkable.
Dude, if it discussed his frigging wife then if it doesn't discuss his similarly longtime male lover then it is a movie that LIES.
Can anyone tell me whether it does? I am not sitting through another historically revisionist erase-all-the-gays "Alexander" or "Beautiful Mind" or "Shakespeare in Love" again.
The film was made for Americans that don't want to hear the truth about their country. Abe was a big ol cracker. They still market "I cannot tell a lie," even though he never said this. American history = mythology.
Betsy Ross also didn't sew the American flag.
All history = mythology. I think Gore Vidal used to describe history as (I paraphrase) the agreed upon set of stories that people came to over time.
It's never the whole story.
I read the book which implied that Lincoln was gay. It was full of innuendo and pure bullshit. I cannot believe it has actually been taken seriously in the media and the minds of people who believe the media.
There's not just one book, asshole. There are multiple letters (which I have read) between the two men. So sorry if you can't deal with a president having been bisexual.
Sorry for calling you an asshole - I assumed wrongly that you were the poster who said that talking about Lincoln's male lover was "slander."
Oh, pshaw! Eleanor Roosevelt has those kinds of flowery letters, too! And she was no lesbian. Why, everyone knows she & Franklin had six kids.
Wonder how long it'll take for someone to realize I'm joking.
I agree with r38: Sally Field is miscast in this.
[quote]"He's about to die" telegraph
Dammit! You're supposed to say "Spoiler Ahead."
[quote]When I was in the UK, I never saw sunshine.
And they all drive on the wrong side of the road.
Possibly the most painful movie experience I've ever had to endure. Wretched.
Why isn't anyone talking about MY performance in this flick? Huh?
r41 & r42 should be muzzled permanently.
r41 in particular knows nothing about American history nor cares about American history unless it's GAY related. John Adams - GAY! George Washington - GAY! Abraham Lincoln - GAY! And if they're not portrayed as GAY it's revisionist history!!! Get over yourself idiot, there's more to the story than YOU. Just continue to bitch, bitch, bitch without even seeing the movie, it makes you SO much more reputable. You wouldn't be happy unless it was Anderson Cooper and Sharon Needles as Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln. Fine, go make your GAY Lincoln movie so we can rip apart your historical inaccuracies. Oh, and congratulations on your hard work reading historical letters. I bet you feel like a real historian now! The gay David McCullough I'm sure.
r42, thanks for making that shocking revelation about Betsy Ross. I bet you feel mighty proud for learning that all on your own. BTW, you obviously didn't see Lincoln because your assessment is blatantly wrong.
Can we get some posts from people who have seen the movie?
My god, but you are a heterosexist idiot. For the record, I am bisexual. A bisexual quite tired of seeing the truth about same-sex relationships conveniently erased in order to make a nice tidy heterosexual movie.
Honestly, R53, why are you even posting on a gay messageboard? Are you working PR for the film? Or are you an escapee from the "Free" Republic who gets the boxer shorts in a twist when your heterosexual privilege is challenged?
R53 wins the prize for most obnoxious cunt of the week.
R53 I am gay, and I don't have time to deal with people who tear apart a well done historical drama because it doesn't jive with their idea of history.
A movie about American history is selling out theatres everywhere. It's a good thing. People who usually don't care about this subject suddenly will go and be entertained and enlightened and inspired to hopefully dig deeper, but no, on Datalounge we're going to get in a huff because Steven Spielberg's Lincoln doesn't cover his gay party circuit white party lifestyle. It's not even a movie about Lincoln's personal life. Mary Todd is not a huge part. It's specifically about the 13th amendment, and that's pretty much it. It's not a historic biopic, it's about a time and a place and our President at that moment.
r56, I'd rather be an obnoxious cunt than a selfish idiot.
That response was to r55.
[quote] on Datalounge we're going to get in a huff because Steven Spielberg's Lincoln doesn't cover his gay party circuit white party lifestyle
Dude, I am a monogamous (bisexual) female. But nice stereotyping. If you love history, I am very puzzled that you would not want accurate history. If the film mentioned Mary Todd, then the equally important Joshua Speed should have been similarly mentioned in the correct context.
How did you feel about Hollywood's heterosexualizing of Alexander the Great? Because it was sort of hard to negotiate around the fucking MEMORIAL MONUMENTS he built in honor of his lover. There was no "closet" for Alexander. It is Hollywood who closets history and never mentions same-sexuality. How about Shakespeare, as I mentioned above? How about Turing - only recently discussed in context of his bullying over his sexuality by Britain? How about Eleanor Roosevelt, Willa Cather, Billie Holiday? I admit that "Shakespeare in Love" was the most odious in historical terms.
Can someone who has seen the film let me know whether Joshua Speed is there in the screenplay in context as the man who shared Abraham Lincoln's bed?
During the limited time period the film covers, Lincoln had no meetings with Joshua Speed, who may have been his lover when they were younger. If Lincoln did have same-sex episodes in his youth, they were over by the time of his presidency so far as we know.
no, r59. But it's not a biopic like Alexander. It's about a specific event in Lincoln's life. There are no flashbacks to his lawyer days in Illinois. There are no flashbacks to his rail splitter days. There is no mention of John Wilkes Booth. His scenes with Mary Todd are scant. She's a far more important character than Speed, that's why she needs to be there. Again, Steven Spielberg's Lincoln is NOT a biopic. It is a story about Abraham Lincoln as President passing the 13th Amendment. A subject far more important than gay rumors.
Thanks, R60. In that case, I might go see it, because it's unlikely to be practicing gay erasure.
R59 Read "The Persian Boy" by Mary Renault. This is a fictionalized accounting of Alexander The Great's homosexual relationship with his lover.
R59, it's not an autobiographical account of Lincoln's life story, it's about his role in the passage of the 13th amendment. I have no problem that the movie (nor the book it was based on) doesn't cover everyone who ever shared Lincoln's bed.
I have read The Persian Boy etc. Renault did not pluck the homosexual relationship out of thin air - it's not fictionalizing the relationship between Alexander and Hephaistion, who were indisputably lovers in the historical record. Renault was, arguably, fictionalizing the extent of the relationship between the eunuch Bagoas and Alexander, however.
How's that queen David Costabile? Creepy and lispy, as always?
You are correct, R65. I never did know the name of the actual lover; now I do...thanks! BTW I have re-read it several times as it is a favorite of mine in the Homosexual genre. Also, read "The Best Little Boy In The World," which is a coming out book; excellent IMHO.
Well, there IS the short scene where Lincoln sits at the end of Joseph Cross' bed working on a speech. Lincoln pats his leg as he gets up and Cross says, "Do you want some company?"
Lincoln says no and walks away.
Also, Lee Pace was also quite good.
I'll check it out, R67. :)
Surprisingly for Kushner, there was pretty much nothing gay in the script at all. The only remotely gay scene was when Lincoln woke up those 2 aides who were sleeping in the same bed, but not sure that was meant to suggest anything.
That's right, r68 - I forgot about that. Now r59 can go see the movie since there is gay stuff. There you go Datalounge, we've OK'd Lincoln for you.
Excellent film. It's going to be hard to pick a personal favorite for the Best Picture Oscar this year.
I don't need to have "gay stuff" to see a film. What I do need is to see history accurately represented. If this is a time period when Joshua Speed was not present in Lincoln's life, then I am comfortable with the film's lack of "gayness." If it had been the many years in which he slept in the same bed as Speed, I would not be as comfortable. But mockingly setting up straw man arguments that the desire to see accurate history is due to some revisionist need to see gayness is a freeper minimizing technique. Never mind; I see the freeps are posting up a storm today on multiple threads anyway.
It's Spielberg. His decisions to include any reference to homosexuality would trump anything Kushner may or may not have put in a draft of the screenplay.
I saw Licoln today
But didn't understand it. It was too politically for me.
I agree R75. If you don't have some working knowledge of the background you will be lost.
Shut up r73. You're the one that made such a big deal about the lack of gay context and said you wouldn't see it if it glossed over the gay stuff.
It's a fact that he would share his bed with soldiers at a house he often stayed at, just outside D.C. while he was president. What isn't known, is if anything sexual went on.
r73, you're full of bullshit. You say:
[quote]I don't need to have "gay stuff" to see a film. What I do need is to see history accurately represented. If this is a time period when Joshua Speed was not present in Lincoln's life, then I am comfortable with the film's lack of "gayness."
But at r59, you very clearly said to the contrary:
[quote]If the film mentioned Mary Todd, then the equally important Joshua Speed should have been similarly mentioned in the correct context.
Which is it that you believe?
Peace out, R79 - I thought the film was about his whole life. I would hold to that requirement were the case, which it's apparently not. Now... are you going to accuse me of "slander" for suggesting Abe was bi?
I saw it today and there is a slight reference to Lincolns sexuality when a black guy, referencing the 13th amendment, says to him "Mr.president, is there anything I can do to show my gratitude?" and Lincoln glances briefly at the man's crotch and slyly says "I'll think of something"
Historical accuracy in the movies?
Are you fucking kidding me?
You're either really stupid, really young or both.
LOl @ R81.
I saw the movie last night. I really thought that was going to be extremely dry, but I was very pleastantly surprised. Daniel Day Lewis really kept my attention. He did an amazing job and there were a few times during the movie I got a little choked up.
[quote] at about 90 minutes, I was wondering where all of this was going
Jeez, thank god cause you would have missed the explosions and the chase scene.
Anyone who has any interest in history should be fascinated by a study of Lincoln.
I haven't read the Lincoln is gay or the Lincoln is vampire killer books. But I hope they are not basing their belief he was gay on the fact that people shared beds in those days - having your own bed was a luxury - or that men wrote flowery over-the-top prose to each other - or else they are showing a serious lack of understanding of the culture of the day.
Nothing decribed above means Lincoln was gay. I have no idea one way or the other but no one has posted anythng that sounds like a "clue."
Spielberg is the girl who wears the prom dress with the bow too far. Like his ending to Saving Private Ryan with that humongous flag at the end. I wanted to scream at the screen - he ruined an incredibly moving ending with that hokum.
I will say he ended Empire of the Sun perfectly.
David Strathairn should get a best supporting nomination. He was amazing as Sec of State Seward.
I saw the movie in a rock ribbed Republican suburb and I imagine what shocked the audience most was that the Republicans were AGAINST Slavery.
All the actors did very well especially Daniel Day Lewis, Sally and Tommy Lee Jones. Jarod Harris cast against type as Gen Grant was wonderful. The casting was amazing.
Great film- beautifully acted- astonishing DDL. The film does gloss over black activism in DC at the time- on the other hand it focuses on the House of Reps (not the Senate which has already passed the bill). I was riveted by every minute of it.
If some of you are referring to Joshua Speed as his long term lover- best you include the others who worked in Speeds store the entire time Lincoln did since the all shared the same bed- then later you better factor in the dozens of lawyers and judges Lincoln slept with in boarding houses and Inns on the legal circut and also the body guard he often shared a bed with at his Soldiers Home retreat as President. Most historians think this was an effort to return to the simpler life of his past in particular after his son died and Mary became unavailable to him in her overwrought grief- not to mention his other burdens- however I guess it really means Lincoln had become a chicken queen!
Some of you really need to learn how to read history , written by real scholars- not an egomaniacal homophobic (Gore Vidal) wriers or that fraud from several years ago.
Perhaps Lincoln had sex with a man or an animal (many dirt farmers started out that way and others as well on more affluent farms and plantations.). But there is no doubt of his intense love affair with at least two women, the second being his wife.
Whatever his precise sexuality- he was the greatest man of the 19th Century. I would suggest that if you are really curious you read some of his great biographers and find out why- he was most definitely not a racist at any y time in his life and in the content of his time he was far ahead of his time. Also- you need to understand that many of his speeches and addresses in the 1850s up to the Emacipation Proclammation were part of political calculation. That along with his resettlement considerations were all part of a long and evolving search for the solution to what he regarded from the get go as the scourge his time.
Read, educate yourself on the truth- I know some of you are trying to be funny.
Good greif! All of you bitching about the lack of gayness in Lincoln missed a great deal of subtlety for which Spielberg is not known for.
Did any of you catch the repeated scenes of Lincoln affectionately clasping with both hands many of the men in the movie and his very tender conversations with mostly young attractive men throughout?
There's even a scene where Lincoln sits on the bed of one young man at 3:00 a.m. While another young man, also in bed looks on.
Not every movie the gay subtext needs to have a dick in a mouth.
Who was the dude that played the wimpy postmaster from Ohio with the receeding hairline? He looked familiar.
Audience applauded at the end (My audience at Argo did the same).
Sad state of affairs: no one in the theatre was younger than 45. What a pathetic, culturally bankrupt country we have become.
R89, the film is entertainment. People not seeing it is meaningless. BTW, tickets are so frigging expensive now.
I agree, r90...tickets cost $10.00. Great film, an Oscar for Sally and Daniel, please!
We went to a 5pm showing today. Theater was full and while I expected a mostly senior audience, it was quite a mix of young and old.
As stated before, DDL is amazing. I don't know how to quite describe it but you felt you were watching Lincoln himself, though we only know him through photographs, writings and contemporaneous accounts. Maybe he captures the myth. No one will really ever know, but he is astonishing.
The rest of the cast is also great, especially Sally Field, David Strathairn and Tommy Lee Jones. There isn't one false moment.
Some of it was very funny and at other moments I became choked up. The great thing is that while most of the movie takes place over a 3 or 4 week period, it illuminates Lincoln the man.
Best historical film I've seen in a very long time.
Damn, we paid $11.
R88- Don't know his name, but he is in Justified as Roy Crowder(?).
I saw this film yesterday and I am still not feeling all the love for it. I may need to see it again. The performances are terrific, but I think I was expecting more.
r89 the young people are already watching Lincoln on the Internet. They know how to do the bootleg sites.
r96, I honestly doubt they're downloading Licoln
I'm honestly excited to see this. I recognize DDL's greatness, but tend to think he can really over-act, but this looks really good.
Forgot to say that for a while there audiences seemed to be applauding at the end of every movie I went to - I'm in D.C.
Also forgot to mention the audience applauded at the end also. Dallas, TX.
It figures the dumb red states would applaud. Here in the northeast the crowd was less enthusiastic with complaints of "what about gay rights?" "yeah, well what about gun control?" "gee, he really did nothing for women" "yet somehow the red man still died out"...rising above those overorchestrated ending credits. Finally, there were sustained boos.
[quote]Here in the northeast the crowd was less enthusiastic with complaints of "what about gay rights?" "yeah, well what about gun control?" "gee, he really did nothing for women" "yet somehow the red man still died out"...rising above those overorchestrated ending credits. Finally, there were sustained boos.
This never happened.
Blah blah blah. Too much talking. Not enough vampires.
Went to screening tonight and there was a Q&A with Sally Field afterwards. She said she gained 25 lbs to play the part.
They were both amazing.
[quote]Some of you really need to learn how to read history , written by real scholars-
[quote]Read, educate yourself on the truth
I love getting pompous demands to educate ourselves from charlie, who does not know himself even how to spell properly.
It was trite and racist and empty.
We just saw Lincoln. Mesmerizing. An acting fest with a great bunch of pros. Daniel Day Lewis, as has been noted "is" Old Abe. You feel you're really seeing him. I thought Sally Field was wonderful. A humorous scene with her busting balls at a White house reception. And an emotional outburst over the memory of her son. Tommy Lee Jones was great too. All three deserve Oscars. Marvelous script by Tony Kuchner. Movie making on a grand scale. But with a heart and a brain.
Great review, r106. So when do you plan on actually seeing the film?
I have published over 50 papers and chapters in text books and edited three texts as well. I am on the editorial boards of 3 medical journals as well. I can spell when I think its important. I can use spell check as well :)
If my post was pompous- so be it. Lincoln is one of the most facinating, never mind great men in all history. While I know some are trying to be funny, I can tell a lot of people on this thread believe a lot of the bullshit. I say read quality sources and learn the truth-or rather get as close to it as you can.
Kind of like the difference between getting your news from FOX or from New Hour on PBS.
Lincoln is too great a man to distort in my view- and there is lots of distortion on this thread. The truth is 10 times more facinating than idiotic takes through the lense of wing nuts in 2012. I might add that the far right does the same kind of thing all the time vis a vis the Founding Fathers.
Even if Lincoln did sleep with men, it would have nothing to do with this movie. A Beautiful Mind similarly had nothing to do with the fact that John Nash had sex with guys; including that in the movie would have been to beside the point mention something that has little if anything to do with the overall themes of the film.
If John Nash suffered from mental issues, then the fact that he was operating in the closet in terms of his bisexuality was indeed germane to "Beautiful Mind", as his mental state was the subject of the film. Are you trying to say that compartmentalization of one's sexuality does not cause mental distress and would not exacerbate other issues?
Ya think, R102? LOL!
Spielberg lost all credibility with me when he supported that schlockfest known as Paranormal Activity. Steven even claimed he had mysterious events happen at his home when he was in possession of the rough cut. You know, you have to wonder if Spielberg would have overlooked that terrible film if the writer/director wasn't related to him in some way. When you see ads for the later versions, with the audience freaked out in the theater, you have to feel like you're being targeted by thieves if you've seen the first rendition. Complete schlock. The nerve!
That R110 writes "that John Nash had sex with guys", boiling sexuality down to just fucking, says alot.
Spielberg is actually responsible for PA becoming the franchise it is- the original ending had Katie killed by the cops. Spielberg suggested they change it, and voila, Katie lives to stalk through sequels forever.
R97- I never once thought there was a gay subtext. The only subtext I got was when Joseph Gordon-Levitt walked into the room. I thought Lincoln was a man of his time. We forget there was a time when a man could take another man's arm, or hold his hand, without there being some gay subtext. Lincoln may have just been a touchy -feely kind of guy. I did hear Tony Kushner say on NPR's " Fresh Air" that he wouldn't dismiss-paraphrasing- the idea that Lincoln might have been gay.
Does it really matter ? Lincoln was a good man who rose to the challenge of his time. We would all like to think we can do that , but he did. That made him great. And that he was a complex person. That makes him interesting. Lincoln seems rather asexual to me at this moment in his life. Some great people do become asexual. Also amazing how they all suffer some mental dysfunction. If we had a more realistic story about Christ he might have been depressed too.
Great acting all around even for some actor as minor as Lee Pace. Not one bad performance. Last time I saw that was in Lord of the Ring. And a really great script. Some soft bigotry is there. But not enough to distract from the frame and theme of the movie.
And DDL is breathtaking as Lincoln. One of the top ten best acting performances by a male actor on screen. And Sally Field- what a great role for an actress at her stage of life. At times she felt a little forced but then Mary Todd's behavior may have been a liitle forced.
Only " The Hobbit" can overtake it now.
[quote]Abe was a big ol cracker. They still market "I cannot tell a lie," even though he never said this.
R42, the cherry tree tale isn't about Honest Abe, FYI.
Pretty restrained by SS standards. Very engaging. DDL is superb, as I've come to expect of him. He is a great actor. TLJ is fantastic, he was a revelation. And Sally acquitted herself quite nicely, I thought.
ITA, movie should have ended with Abe walking down the hall to see the play.
[quote] Last time I saw that was in Lord of the Ring
Girth Brooks was tremendous in that!
The film looks wonderful but every time I see the supporting cast (except for Sally), I see the actors.
Oh look its Joseph Gordon-Levitt, James Spader and Tommy Lee Jones. (Especially JG-L)
I hate that it takes me out, my own fault of course, but I fear that is how it will be once I actually see the film.
R-117 funny - I mean it. Meant Rings sorry
If my post was pompous- so be it. If all my posts are pompous- so be it. For I am charlie.
I'm not going to see it. The damn thing is two and a half hours long! Who needs to see another movie about Lincoln? I'm sick of the Civil War! Who needs another movie about it?
I don't give a damn who's in it. The subject has been done a thousand times before.
[quote]I'm sick of the Civil War! Who needs another movie about it? I don't give a damn who's in it. The subject has been done a thousand times before.
Hardly. I dare you to name 5 Civil War movies. It's WWII that's been covered to death. I'm so sick of THAT subject!
Thanks r94. The Walter dude that was in the Shield. I couldn't place him.
R118, You'll be surprised that you don't relate the actors to their movie star selves. My partner is a big Joseph Gorden Levitt fan and didn't realize it was him. James Spader is rather bloated and whiskered and blends with the character. A world is recreated and the audience goes with it.
[quote]I thought the movie should have ended with the shot of Lincoln walking down the hallway, his silhouette framed by the archway of the window. We all know where he was going and what happened next.
Agreed. That was the natural, organic place to end the film. The remaining minutes felt tacked-on and off-note.
Day-Lewis was magnificent, but the film itself was hit and miss. There were times when it dragged, times when it soared, and times when it was just...awkward, such as the aforementioned ending. It was strange, because while Spielberg certainly has his flaws as a director, I've never thought of awkwardness as one of them.
James Spader and his crew were one of the highlights, they brought great energy every time they were onscreen.
Tony Kushner really wrote big chunks of the film the way he would have written a play - massive passages of dialogue, which was a mistake. Between the antiquated style of speaking and the sheer number of sentences, some of the actors could barely wrap their mouths around their lines.
It's time to send John Williams to the glue factory. The swelling, sentimental music telegraphing that Something Very Important Was About To Be Said was just plain cheesy.
I thought Gordon Love Hewitt was brilliant as his son. Definitely deserves a supporting actor Oscar nomination.
I too thought the first half of the film was far too slow and plodding. I'm wondering how many will pick up on the subtle "tells" alluding to Lincoln's probable bisexuality? Spielberg did a decent job of adding enough subtext, both physical and verbal to suggest this without hitting Mr & Mrs Middle America over the head with it. And indeed the last 3-5 minutes could have been deleted and the film would have had a far better, and tighter ending.
A far better and tighter end is what I always look for....in a movie, I mean.
I saw it tonight and thought it was incredible. Performances were outstanding all the way around. I saw it in NJ where not only did the audience applaud at the end but booed the part when the vote was being called and the NJ rep voted no. I've never experienced that at a movie and it was great...
[quote]Blah blah blah. Too much talking. Not enough vampires.
Go watch Twilight stupid.
I saw it at a pre-release screening in Seattle, and was shocked to see at the end that it was a Spielberg film ...i've never enjoyed his films, as they tend to wallow in sentimental slop & over-the-top self-importance ("Close Encounters" etc etc etc).
But I thought Lincoln was tremendous, a very entertaining historical lesson. Except...the film ignored Lincoln's gay side - forgiveable though, sincethe film only told a story of a narrow slice in time of his life.
DDL will be a lock to win best actor I think. What an amazing performance, to make Lincoln come alive & become human.
I did not consider any part of the film slow or plodding, in fact I thought those two and one half hours went by faster than any movie I can remember . . .
For anyone with a political mind this movie is a Master Class on the idea behind "the ends will justify the means" . . . .
I suspect I'll see it once more on he big screen before I end up with a BluRay copy for my own library . . .
As a movie it's an almost total success with a few cheap shots.
As history, it's less successful, but as political argument, it's very strong.
The cast is outstanding from Day-Lewis, Field, Jones, Straithairn and Holbrook to every featured player, especially James Spader.
That soldier kid at the beginning looks like Leo DiCaprio de-aged for this film! He even sounds like him! It was creepy.
[quote]Hardly. I dare you to name 5 Civil War movies.
GONE WITH THE WIND
I'm not head over heels in love with this movie, but I will say that the 2.5 hours spent watching it went by a lot faster than the 2.5 hours I spent watching Skyfall.
I liked that each name of the reps voting on the amendment were read and their votes recorded. People should be held accountable for for their actions, commended or shamed, even if it's hundreds of years later.
[quote]But didn't understand it. It was too politically for me.
Is this a joke? All that you need to understand the movie is a basic grasp of how your country's government works. So terribly sad that is considered too political.
Anyway, I actually wasn't over impressed by the movie. I found it typical Spielberg overall, just kinda cloying and meant to be a crowd-pleaser with no real edge.
It was a fine movie though, and Daniel Day Lewis certainly deserves the Oscar. His performance, as always, was amazing to watch.
Joseph Gordon Levitt seemed completely superfluous, his character added nothing to the movie.
RIDE WITH THE DEVIL
THE RED BADGE OF COURAGE
GODS AND GENERALS
THE OUTLAW JOSEY WALES
My point, R135 and R138, is that we haven't been inundated with Civil War pictures like we have WWII. Even on TV. I eventually stopped watching The History Channel several years ago 'cause every other show was about friggin' WWII.
I liked it overall. Agree with everyone that DDL was amazing. However, many of the scenes reminded me of The Hall of Presidents at Disneyland: Let's get three wooden people in wigs, have them discuss History as its unfolding, throw in a whimsical anecdote meant to amuse and teach, and DONE! Next scene!
Not to forget Clint Eastwood and Geraldine Page in 1971's "The Beguiled"
[quote]Joseph Gordon Levitt seemed completely superfluous, his character added nothing to the movie.
JGL, an immensely talented actor, was wasted in the film. Not exactly miscast, but you kept waiting for his big scenes and there really wan't much for him to do. It was sort of an extended cameo.
The character of Robert Lincoln was important in a historical sense, so leaving him out would have been boneheaded. Still, an actor with a lesser profile would have been the better choice.
And yes, the movie should have ended with Abe walking down the steps. It's a typical Spielberg problem - without Verna Field, there's no one to reign in his self-indulgence - i.e. the "I'm not worthy" scenes of both Private Ryan and Schindler's List (although I do feel the cemetery scene at the very end of S.L. is still powerful).
r142, I thought it was a mistake in general to have so many famous actors in the film. Two old Jewish ladies sitting behind me vocally identified a few of them to one another when they appeared ("THERE'S THAT KID FROM THIRD ROCK FROM THE SUN!"), and I thought I was going to go nuts.
Joseph is wonderful, but wasted in Lincoln.
I saw it today and really loved it. Did anyone else notice that Jean Kennedy Smith (JFK's sister) is in it? That makes me wonder, is the Kathleen Kennedy that produces with Spielberg one of THE Kennedys?
WTF did Denis O'Hare and John Benjamin Hickey ever do to Tony Kushner to keep them from acting in LINCOLN?
They were literally the only two character actors from the NY stage absent from the cast.
And what's the story with Kevin Kline? He is credited as being one of the wounded soldiers in the hospital Lincoln visits but if he's really there, he's very disguised and his role was non-speaking.
We just called it "The Sally Todd Field Movie" and enjoy it for what it is.
[quote]That soldier kid at the beginning looks like Leo DiCaprio de-aged for this film! He even sounds like him! It was creepy.
Dane De Haan! Luckily, he's actually a good actor. Because probably a lot of Hollywood folk initially like him for the very reason of looking like young Leo.
I thought it was a pretty well-done film, but it's not something I personally loved or will be watching again.
Saw the movie tonight as well.
It was riveting. It didn't feel like two and a half hours, either.
It made me kind of embarrassed that I didn't know more about what actually transpired before and after these events. Didn't know who half those people were. I was trying to remember the bits and pieces I had seen from Burns' Civil War series.
I guess James Spader's group were what we would now consider lobbyists?
Sally's only really over-the-top scene is when she's in Willie's bedroom, and she's supposed to be over-the-top there--the thing about Mary Todd Lincoln was that she was a very, very overemotional woman, and she went nuts with her grief over Willie's death. (Even Mary Tyler Moore played this side of her when she played the part for the TV miniseries.)
I thought Sally was particularly excellent in the scene where she parries with the congressmen as she welcomes them to the White House soiree, and also the scene at the end where she and Abe are out being driven in a carriage together and she complains the only thing history will remember her for is for being crazy and making him unhappy.
r145 Kathleen K is not related to -those- Kennedys. No relation.
What part did Jean Smith play though? First I've heard of this.
I also liked the scene when they discussed sending her to a madhouse, R150. Lots of historians have considered her some type of bipolar.
And I sort of wonder at critics who criticize Sally's performance as over-the-top. Like you, I think that's rather true to character. Supposedly Edwin Stanton had to have Mary forcibly removed from the room where Lincoln lay dying because she was so hysterical.
Toward the end of the film, a few black men and women enter the House gallery on the day of the vote, and the House, en masse, stops talking, watches them in awe, and applauds. Who are these visitors? I thought perhaps that they included Frederick Douglass, who was the most famous black man of his day and commanded respect from all segments of society, except slaveholders and their allies. But I don't recall from my reading that Douglass was present in Congress -- that day or ever. Still, Mary Lincoln didn't watch the vote either, but there she was in the movie, which I loved.
[quote]What part did Jean Smith play though? First I've heard of this.
According to the end credits, she played one of several women in the gallery of congress. She is billed as "Ambassador Jean Kennedy Smith".
David Strathairn had Ayn Rand hair.
One of the best things about the film is how it didn't shy away from the truly unflattering hairstyles of the period. I admire its historical authenticity.
It also shows how Lincoln was not prone to passing fads as his rather unstyled hair was one of the few that still looks somewhat modern and attractive today.
"self-indulgence - i.e. the "I'm not worthy" scenes of both Private Ryan and Schindler's List (although I do feel the cemetery scene at the very end of S.L. is still powerful)."
Agree with you totally about Spielberg's problem with self-indulgence and forgetting that less would be more; and it has flawed some otherwise very great work.
Frankly, though, I bought the "I'm not worthy" scene in Schindler because it made sense to me that that character, at that moment, would have realized that every single additional step he could have taken, but didn't, would have been a matter of life and death; and although many found that scene manipulative, I found it very truthful - with Neeson knowing exactly how to make it work - and effective.
The cemetery scene, however, was, for me, cringe-worthy manipulation.
I have to say that the ending ruined the film for me. It is such lazy filmmaking.
The way they try to trick the audience into thinking they'll witness the assassination reminds me of the ending in The Silence of the Lambs, except the FBI raid on the house intercut with Clarice works perfectly, because it adds suspense.
The whole idea that his young son just happens to be in the theater watching a play on that same night added to the confusion of the ending.
And don't get me started on that shot of a flame at the end. I have never seen anything cornier in my life.
[quote]The whole idea that his young son just happens to be in the theater watching a play on that same night added to the confusion of the ending.
But he did. That's exactly what happened.
What makes Lincoln relevant?
I didn't like the ending, and there were other things in the movie I didn't like. The movie is far from perfect. But it's a damn good movie and at times a great one.
And damn good movies are pretty rare these days, let alone movies that at moments achieve greatness.
There are moments in Argo too which are beneath the quality of the film as a whole. But it's still a damn good movie.
I haven't seen films better than Argo or Lincoln this year.
I personally thought Argo and Silver Linings Playbook were stronger films than Lincoln.
I hope I don't forget that the boat sinks like I did the last time.
Strathairn's hair was exactly like Seward's.
I just came from seeing it. I totally agree about the sort-of-but-not-really assassination scene. Just wrong, wrong, wrong.
I thought his warmth with the aides in bed -- non-sexual, but making physical contact -- or the guys manning the telegraph, was indeed a quiet nod to his bisexuality, without introducing Joshua Speed, who really wasn't at all present during this time period. He was certainly warmer toward the guys than he was toward his wife, and they dealt with the idea that she knew he felt "trapped" and apparently had to marry her after she got pregnant.
I wish somehow, even though it would have been somewhat gratuitous, that the black corporal at the beginning of the film (who finished reciting the Gettysburg Address) could have had a scene after the amendment was passed.
I loved how there was a terrific mixture of motivations among both the opponents and supporters of the amendment, and how lobbying and payoffs and dirty dealings are nothing new to Congress! I also realized I have no idea how or why the Democrats were apparently right-wing in those days, or when they switched sides with the Republicans ideologically. I have some studying to do.
I should add: I just read this in Wikipedia:
"Prior to the formation of the conservative coalition, which helped realign the Democratic and Republican party ideologies in the mid-1960s, the party historically advocated classical liberalism, paleoconservatism, and progressivism."
This seems utterly inconceivable to me. I want to know more.
And what did the Whigs stand for?
R167, the Whigs were a party that formed after Andrew Jackson (the first Democratic president) ascended to power. Before Jackson, the two main parties were the Republican-Democrats (yup, they were once the exact same party) and the Federalists. By the time Quincy Adams and Jackson ran against each other in 1828, Federalists were all but done and the single party of the Reps/Dems was, of course, beginning to fray and split. Jacksonian Democrats attempted to bring democracy to more people than ever before, make it more grass roots and fair (compared to the more elitist Jeffersonian Democrats from decades earlier). More (white) men got the right to vote under the Jacksonian Dems then ever before. The Whigs, as the precursors to the modern Republicans, were about modernizing the economy, and about solidifying the young country's infrastructure (roads, schools, etc). Both parties were extremely important and invaluable to shaping our country, IMHO. The Whigs ultimate demise was, of course, the slavery issue in the mid-1850s, when the Lincoln Republicans took over.
JGL's part as Robert Lincoln was extremely lame. Except when he got slapped. I hated the little boy, too. Typical Spielberg. The rest of the movie was great.
I loved seeing Elizabeth Marvel and Julie White in small roles. I'm over Adam Driver, though. He has the same speech pattern in every role, it's getting old.
Sally Field and DDL were amazing and I bet they will both win Oscars. Sorry Anne.
Lincoln is DDL's greatest performance on a long list of great performances.
He will deservedly win the Oscar.
R158, it was only surprise if you nothing about U.S. history. The play that Tad Lincoln was watching was obviously not "Our American Cousin", so we knew we wouldn't be seeing the assassination.
I saw it last weekend with family, and liked it very much. I didn't love it, but I'm not a big Spielberg fan anyway, at least post-"E.T." since he became the grand auteur.
I know Tommy Lee Jones is going to be everyone's favorite for Supporting Actor, and he was brilliant. But I'd give it to James Spader, who steals the show and is a way better actor than he has ever really gotten credit for.
I thought Miss Sally Field was exactly right in her few, powerful scenes. She stirred a mixture of privately hysterical loon and publicly politically-savvy wife fairly brilliantly. I imagine Nancy Reagan was much the same.
(Sally in the Nancy Reagan Story...now there's a thought)
too many fucking vampires.
Really good movie, agree it should have ended two minutes earlier.
Acting was top-notch all around.
DDL is the one to beat.
I thought it was the best work from Speilberg, Kushner, Day-Lewis, Jones and Spader in years. Field has never been better.
Daniel Day-Lewis channels Walter Brennan. Once I figured that out, I smiled through the entire film. Tommy Lee Jones was brilliant. Kept waiting for Lee Pace to sing Molasses to Rum.
[qoute] I know Tommy Lee Jones is going to be everyone's favorite for Supporting Actor, and he was brilliant. But I'd give it to James Spader
Post back after you've seen Sam Jackson in Django Unchained.
Saw it today. I was shocked. I thought it was deadly dull, boarding on boring. You see something like "1776" and every viewing still provides tension when you already know the outcome. Same with "Apollo 13", I saw it in the packed Ziedfeld Theater in NYC and everyone knew the ending as the astronauts were all over the news that week to promote yet when they survived the auditorium erupted in appaluse. I wouldn't be suprised if half my audience to day was asleep. There was ome humor, yet no laughs and zero applause at the end.
Lewis, Jones and Field, all earned their praise but I too think James Spader deserves recognition. Thought the kid playing the youngest son was a terrible kid actor and Joesph Gordon-Levitt was way out of his league.
What I found really disturbing (and really stupid) is that apparently, Spielberg changed the names of those in the House who voted "no" because he feared they had some living relatives whom he didn't want to embarrass.
How stupid is that?
Gidget was way too old to play Mary Todd Lincoln. Mary was in her mid 40s at the time this took place. Celeste Talbert is ready for a nursing home now.
Forgot to sign my post. Oopsie.
Is this still the favorite to win Best Picture?
Looks like it's lost quite a bit of steam to "Zero Dark Thirty".
i just searched; 'Lincoln' should have ended...and see that someone, at least, felt the same as i..with him walking out the door on way to the theatre.
Actually, it has lost steam to Argo.
You're not the only one. A lot of people think it should have ended with him walking towards the door.
"Zero Dark Thirty" is tedious nonsense. If a man directed it there would be no peeing on the carpet about it. The film is second rate.
"Argo" is good but the sum is not equal to the parts.
"Lincoln" is a masterpiece. Plain and simple. It will last as long as people care about film.
"Silver Linings Playbook" is silly.
"Beasts of the Southern Wild" is great, but a bit overrated.
Lincoln has too many false moments. And in between, well, it's kinda boring, actually.
Brit here. Just caught up with it. Certainly the talkiest film I've seen for a long time, but once one immerses, it's a pleasure. I'm not generally a Spielberg fan, but his sentimental leanings are wisely reigned in here.
I agree that there isn't a weak performance. DDL and TLJ are flawless, and I wouldn't be surprised if they and Sally Field claim a hat trick of Oscars.
Gay subtext; when Spader plays cards with his cronies and is surprised by DDL: "Well, I'll be fucked." Lincoln: "I wouldn't bet against it."
Also, the wonderful scene with the telegraph boys, in which Lincoln extols the timeless theorem of Euclid, concerning sameness and equality: it's about a triangle, the shape he briefly makes with his fingers. A pink triangle. He then fondly takes leave of the young men by touching their shoulders.
'Lincoln' is a fine film, a vital history primer, and a rueful commentary on progress. I'll see it again.
I found interesting that throwaway moment when the congressmen are even more riled up over the thought of suffrage for women than for blacks.
I was also a little bugged by the misrepresentation of Connecticut as pro-slavery (CT voted for the 13th amendment, not against as the movie depicts). Seems an odd and unnecessary bit of dramatic license.
I hope when the dvd comes out Kushner does the commentary on it. I would like to hear the story behind that scene with Joseph Cross in bed with the other guy.
Sent me to sleep within the first half hour. It felt like it went on for days and the use of music to convey BIG MOMENTS was cheesy beyond belief. Truly dreadful film, saved only by performances of DDL and TLJ
Steven Spielberg wouldn't touch Lincoln's bisexuality but he had no problem revealing Congressman Thaddeus Stevens' (Tommy Lee Jones) liaison with a Black woman.
The Ghost of Fawn M. Brodie
[quote]the wonderful scene with the telegraph boys, in which Lincoln extols the timeless theorem of Euclid, concerning sameness and equality: it's about a triangle, the shape he briefly makes with his fingers. A pink triangle. He then fondly takes leave of the young men by touching their shoulders.
I missed that in the theater, but will look for it next time.
This was a very good movie, and all of the "name" actors did themselves proud. I would have liked to see Sally Field and Tommy Lee Jones pick up Oscars alongside DDL, sure. I also believe James Spader deserved a nomination for a hilarious turn at a toughly constrained role.
Did it deserve Best Picture or Director? Maybe not. But I wouldn't be surprised if it survives much longer and better than "Argo" or "Life of Pi."
Don't know if this was already posted but if it was it's worth repeating, dvd release date is March 26th.
This is the most boring fucking movie ever. A complete waste of a terrific cast.
I lasted 40 minutes and almost cracked my skull open when I fell over in a coma from boredom.
Interesting time is US history presented with all the life and air sucked out.
How did Ann Hathaway win over Sally Field?
R195's referring to the Civil War as an "interesting time in US history" indicates that, despite my agreeing that much of the film was predictably mishandled, the poster lacks the sense and discretion to pronounce in such a bald way. However, his falling over in boredom does sound like the sort of thing this type of person would do. Motor skill issues, you know.