Friday, January 25, 2013

LINCOLN

I don't want this to come off the wrong way; I think LINCOLN will probably sweep many of the Oscars, and I did enjoy the film. It is very well made, but I think this film version did not create a Lincoln that was a three-dimensional human being (and even more so his wife Mary Todd).

Even as a kid, I was obsessed with Lincoln. I'm not exactly an expert on him, but I know enough to judge that this film was more sanctified hero worship than reality. The cinematography, makeup, set design, and sound design were all outstanding and created a great mood for the film, but I would much rather have seen Lincoln as a fully complex character.

Normally I love John Williams' work, but I think the score had a lot to do with this. Lincoln always seemed the most real of the presidents to me, someone I could have a beer with in front of the fireplace. This Lincoln would make me afraid of getting dirt on the carpet. I know people are raving about the performances, but every time Daniel Day-Lewis spoke, all I could think about is the Hall of Presidents from Disney World and how the audience gasped when the robotic Lincoln actually took a step forward. People are more amazed that he looks like Lincoln than they are impressed with his acting, in my opinion.

But I still enjoyed the film. I just wish there were more to it. There are plenty of great documentaries about Lincoln and the Civil War if you want to learn more about him.



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