Director: Steven Spielberg
Nominated: Best Picture, Best Actor, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress, Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, Editing, Cinematography, Production Design, Costume Design, Original Score, Sound Mixing
I am not a fan of Lincoln. I’m not sure if it’s because I’m not American and do not have that sense of patriotism and love of Lincoln, or if it’s just the film itself, but I found it boring. I also think that attempt to create tension within the film doesn’t work because you know what the outcome of the film will be … everyone knows that Lincoln abolished slavery, ended the Civil War and was then assassinated, making the whole lead up to those events redundant.
I did like the way Spielberg approached the assassination. You see someone at the theatre and assume that you’re about to witness the first assassination of America’s president when in actuality you don’t. You just see the heart-breaking reaction of his youngest son when the news is broken on stage.
I found the film long and tedious but did appreciate a number of the performances. Tommy Lee Jones is brilliant as always despite looking ridiculous in his congressional wig. Sally Fields is lovely and has enormous strength as Mrs. Lincoln. The visual resemblance between Daniel Day Lewis and Abe Lincoln is remarkable and I suppose it’s a good performance but it just didn’t feel it.
For a film that revolves around abolishing slavery and equalizing rights for Blacks there are noticeably few black characters and certainly none of any substance. Indeed the few characters of colour we do see, Lincoln’s servants and Tommy Lee’s housewife come lover, have very light skin.
While I didn’t like the film I can see it doing well at the Oscars because if there is one thing that the Academy does well is congratulate itself. Although having said that I have given up trying to guess which way the Academy will go because they do like pulling random wins out of the bag (“It’s a hard life for a pimp” as Best Song?!)