I was invited to go and see Lincoln last night. Ugh. What a piece of trash. It uses every trick in the Hollywood filmmaker’s book to manipulate your emotions and color your perception of Lincoln and his actions to put him in a positive light. Yes, the screenwriters touch on Lincoln’s unconstitutional seizing of war powers, but the film clearly intends you to believe that it was due to his motives to end slavery once and for all.
Spielberg does it all: soaring music at the right moments; the use of light around Lincoln when the 13th Amendment is passed; in most of the images of Union soldiers they are black; the Confederate peace delegates appear small and sniveling; throughout the movie it is remarked about Lincoln how much he is loved ad nauseum; at the news of his death we see his young son screaming as a reaction. All of Hollywood’s tools are employed to make him appear great. One of my wife’s friends was crying at the end. Leni Riefenstahl would be proud.