Universal Studios is prepping its release of the groundbreaking Steven Spielberg film Jurassic Park in 3D by making available two TV spots to get us in the mood.
The thing with The Best Picture category is that it’s always been such a mess when it comes to the nominations. I still wonder why it went to 10 nominees.
Lincoln shows the command and skill that Steven Spielberg still employs as a director. Bringing one of the most complicated and misunderstood of stories to the big screen, the telling of the last two tumultuous months of the 16th President Of The United States life. Rich and multilayered, the cast of characters in this drama breathe with the passions that drove the real men and women in a fine tapestry that is as richly complex at the times they represent. This is a very adult film, not only in themes and tone, but in the honest and realistic portrayal of President Abraham Lincoln.
Abraham Lincoln is considered one of the most important and is the most often quoted President in United States history. Complex and eloquent, he served as President during the American Civil War from 1861 until his death in 1865. A complicated mixture of state’s rights to make their own laws and slavery, the war was bitterly contested and fought by both sides. As the war progressed, Lincoln focused the contest ever more solidly on the question of slavery. By giving a series of speeches that not only defined his current political situation, but also the larger questions of human existence, he was able to sway those that might have opposed his proposals. By 1865, the war was coming to a close. Fearing that the war would end without a definitive answer to the slavery question, he pushed forward on his proposal to have a Constitutional Amendment forever ending slavery in the United States. This film focuses squarely on that event.
Lincoln (Daniel Day Lewis) has only so much time before spring begins, before war starts taking lives again, to pass the legislation that will free the slaves. His large frame is bent from the weight of the battles, personal, military and political, as he wages to keep his family and the union together. His wife, Mary Lincoln (Sally Field), mourns the loss of their son Willie and has never fully recovered. Son Robert (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) desperately wants to join the military and fight, but his mother forces Lincoln, as President, to not allow it. Thaddeus Stevens (Tommy Lee Jones) a fellow Republican pushing hard to get an Amendment passed is as much a foe as ally. Then the various factions of Northern and Southern Democrats those both oppose and are willing to be bought for votes. Enter John Hawkes, James Spader, and Tim Blake Nelson as a trio working to backdoor deals to make the votes needed appear. Add to this already seemingly complicated series of events, a delegation from the Confederate States is traveling to negotiate a possible peace, the very existence of could not only stop the passage of the proposed Amendment, but also cause the President considerable political harm. It’s no wonder the First Lady suffered from headaches. The weaving together of so many different plotlines and strong personalities is handled deftly by allowing the story to take precedence, and letting the actors excel at what they do best.
A self educated man, Lincoln was an avid reader and deep thinker. Contemplating and reflecting, taking time to choose the most prudent of courses, not just the most politically expedient, Lincolns life, writings and speeches have come to represent vastly different interpretations. Trying to reconcile the human with the legend is never an easy task, especially one in the middle of such an elaborate as this film tries to portray. Yet, together Spielberg and Lewis paint a mosaic of not only interesting events, but of a great mind methodically working its way through a problem. The support cast is no less stellar than Lewis, each bringing their own character to life, but as focal point for the piece, Lewis clearly understands the intricate nature of the man himself. It is being able to show Lincoln at his best and worst, be it talking to gathered troops, arguing with his wife, swaying his own cabinet or giving an inaugural address while also showing the cost, the imprint and impact it was having on him and those closest to him clearly shines through in his performance.
Spielberg is at his best when he chooses projects that have deeper meaning than just mere entertainment. While his films are all well made, it is this type of project where he truly excels. From early in the film, it become obvious that not only recreating this period of Lincoln’s life, but recreating the world in which it took place. The myriad of minor details and costuming open the viewer to the limitation and construction of the world as it existed then. The industrial revolution had brought massive changes to the world, and these are reflected by not only the alterations in daily life, but also the destruction to humanity. The destruction and death are every part of this film, yet are not sought out as a modern anti-war sentiment, but rather spoken of in their cost of freedom by those who perpetuated and lived through it. Also, the passions of this debate were not nearly as delineated as history would have us believe, as the conflicts within each man of how to vote, be it easy or difficult, is explored. The dynamic presence of so much conflict might have been distracting, but by choosing Lincoln’s words carefully, by placing them at key moments throughout the film, we are led to but one conclusion, as I’m sure many in his day were as well.
The facts of the film are generally accurate, but in trying to tell this story in such a medium some considerations must be made. These small details can be overlooked quite easily as the film gets far more exceedingly right than wrong. This is an intimate portrait of one great man, at the moment of his greatest triumph, whose life still reverberates through the American political spectrum and lives today.
Recommended for anyone wanting a rich, complex, adult film. Those seeking a glorified civil war action flick should go elsewhere.
“I can’t end this war until we cure ourselves of slavery…”
We have our first international trailer for Steven Spielberg‘s Lincoln starring Daniel-Day (Just give him the Oscar) Lewis. The movie is pretty damn great. A proper film made by proper filmmakers and definitely on its way to pick up some hardware come Awards season. This trailer looks at the movie from an ‘ending slavery angle’ which none of the marketing this side of the pond has really done as of yet. With the North American marketing we are getting the rose-coloured “Lincoln is the one of the best Presidents” messaging. You get a much truer sense of the film from this trailer.
Check it out below.
Lincoln opens November 16th.
About the Film Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln, which finished shooting last year, stars Daniel Day-Lewis (of My Left Foot, Gangs of New York, There Will Be Blood) as our 16th President, Abraham Lincoln, and focuses on the last four months of his life, guiding the North to victory during the Civil War. The cast includes Sally Field, Tommy Lee Jones, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Jackie Earle Haley, Lee Pace, John Hawkes, Walton Goggins, Hal Holbrook, Tim Blake Nelson and David Oyelowo. The film has a screenplay by Oscar nominee Tony Kushner (Angels in America, Munich), based on many books about Lincoln’s life. Disney, releasing the DreamWorks production, will debutLincoln in limited theaters starting on November 9th, expanding wide on the 16th.
It is very well known that I am not a fan of 3D movies at all. It is quite blatantly a cash grab by the studios and in most cases is quite annoying. The only proper use for 3D technology is for animated films at it enhances the storyboard effect and really brings the movie to life.
With that said, if there was one movie that actually would be very interesting to see in 3D, it would be Jurassic Park. A marvel of technology at the time, it would be very interesting to see the dinosaurs in this realm. Much like animated movies, these fantastical creatures might actually look better in 3D.
It looks like we wil get our chance next spring as Universal Studios just released the trailer and poster for the 3D re-release of the iconic film that quite literally changed the game when it comes to special-effects in movies. While the trailer is nothing special, just footage of the original film, I am very intrigued to see how this conversion will play out.
Universal is re-releasing Jurassic Park in 3D in theaters starting on April 5th, 2013 next year.
About The Film On a remote island, a wealthy entrepreneur secretly creates a theme park featuring living dinosaurs drawn from prehistoric DNA. Before opening the exotic attraction to the public, he invites a top paleontologist, a paleobotanist, a mathematician/theorist, and his two eager grandchildren to experience the park — and help calm anxious investors. Jurassic Park was directed by Steven Spielberg and released on June 11th, 1993. Based on Michael Crichton‘s novel, adapted by Crichton himself and screenwriter David Koepp.
Here is the trailer:
And here is the poster: