“Lincoln” restores my faith in Steven Spielberg
Deep down, I didn’t really want to see Lincoln. Director Steven Spielberg has been my sworn enemy since Warhorse. Plus, it felt like homework and I worried it would be long and boring. But I knew Daniel Day-Lewis would be amazing and that it would probably get lots of Oscar nominations and that it was good for me, so I decided to just get it out of the way.
I couldn’t have been more wrong. First of all, it isn’t boring at all. It’s actually quite thrilling. But most importantly Lincoln is good. And I mean that in the morally right and virtuous definition…it is inspiring. Doris Kearns Goodwin wrote the book that was used as source material for the film and she once talked about how she kept putting off writing the ending because she didn’t want to lose him. This is how I felt by the end of the movie, how amazing that we had this man to lead us and how unbearable it is that he is gone.
Also, it’s really entertaining. Watching DDL as Lincoln is enthralling, but I have to mention James Spader and John Hawkes and Jared Harris and even Hannah’s boyfriend (Girls), Adam Driver! The acting is just a joy to behold. My only complaints were the casting of Tommy Lee Jones and Sally Field. Not that they aren’t good actors, they are just so Tommy and Sally, you never forget it’s them, so I find them distracting. (Whenever he’s on screen I imagine his “I want a search of every doghouse, outhouse, henhouse, etc.” speech in The Fugitive and she’s just a confluence of every histrionic performance I’ve seen her give, from Steel Magnolias to Brothers & Sisters.)
But back to Steven Spielberg….the directing is near perfect. I assume he’ll be nominated and at this point, I think he should win (along with Tony Kushner for the script and DDay for acting.)
I can’t more highly recommend it.