Oscar®Oscar® Winner for Best Actor in a leading role, Best Production Design
NOMINEE FOR: Best Picture, Best Directing, Writing (Adapted Screenplay), Best Cinematography, Best Actor in a supporting role, Best Actress in a supporting role, Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing, Best Music (original score), Best Sound Mixing
Movie Review

Lincoln

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for an intense scene of war violence, some images of carnage and brief strong language.

Reviewed by: Casey Scharven
CONTRIBUTOR

Average
Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Adults Teens
Genre:
Biography History War Drama Adaptation
Length:
2 hr. 20 min.
Year of Release:
2012
USA Release:
November 9, 2012 (limited—11 theaters)
November 16, 2012 (limited)
DVD: March 26, 2013
Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures click photos to ENLARGE Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Relevant Issues
Copyright, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Relevant movies

movie review: “Gettysburg” (1993)

movie review: “Gods and Generals” (2003)

movie review: The Conspirator (2011)

movie announcement: Faith in the White House (2008)


moral courage

team conflict / reconciling conflicting personalities, cultural conflicts and political factions to achieve success for greater good

President Abraham Lincoln

Mary Todd Lincoln

Robert Todd Lincoln

Book: Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Goodwin

secession in the U.S.

United States Civil War

ethical dilemma

war in the Bible

What is the Biblical perspective on war? Answer

Gettysburg Address

Battle of Gettysburg

slaves and slavery

Does the Bible condone slavery? Answer

FOUNDING FATHERS AND SLAVERY—Were America’s Founding Fathers racists, pro-slavery, and hypocrites? Answer

U.S. abolition/abolishment of slavery

emancipation of slaves

family conflict

death of a child

mourning

mental illness

assassination

Featuring: Joseph Gordon-LevittRobert Todd Lincoln
Daniel Day-LewisAbraham Lincoln
Tommy Lee JonesThaddeus Stevens
Jackie Earle HaleyAlexander Stephens
Sally FieldMary Todd Lincoln
David StrathairnSecretary of State William Seward
Hal HolbrookFrancis Preston Blair
Tim Blake NelsonRichard Schell
John Hawkes … Robert Latham
more »
Director: Steven Spielberg
Producer: DreamWorks Pictures
Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
more »
Distributor: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

“…and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

Hearing a movie is directed by Steven Spielberg is often a reason many people pause and consider seeing that movie. His record as a writer, producer, and director places him as one of most influential filmmakers in cinema history. Involved in many of the most important AND popular films in the past 40 years (“Jaws,” “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” “Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark,” “Back to the Future,” “Schindler's List,” “Jurassic Park,” “Amistad,” “Saving Private Ryan,” “E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial,” and many, many others), his latest production, “Lincoln” will be considered as an addition to the list of Spielberg classics.

The movie, which Mr. Spielberg based on the book Team of Rivals, by Doris Kearns Goodwin, is focused on President Lincoln’s efforts to convince the House of Representatives to pass the proposed 13th Amendment (to abolish slavery) prior to the end of the war with the Southern states. The movie trailers give only a hint as to the powerful scenes which show the political struggle to address the future of the United States; its relationship to slavery and to those who would be freed by the 13th Amendment. The movie opens with a poignant scene where it is apparent that Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address has impacted both white and colored soldiers. As part of the effort to pass the 13th Amendment in the House of Representatives, the movie portrays the question of how to address the Confederacy’s peace overtures, the timing of the war’s end, and the vote on the Amendment. Many politicians believed that passage of the Amendment would cause the continuation of the war, as the South would fight on; President Lincoln wanted the Amendment passed so there could be no possibility of slavery continuing after the Southern states rejoined the Union.

When you were little, do you remember imagining a scene from a book? Mr. Spielberg has a knack for bringing stories to the cinema screen that we might have only been able to imagine, and in “Lincoln”, he has done so again. If you ever wondered what Abraham Lincoln really looked like; how he walked, and maybe even how he talked (yes, Daniel Day-Lewis researched contemporary accounts of how Lincoln spoke), you will be enchanted. If you ever wondered what a Civil War battle might have looked like, then you will have a good idea of it by the end of the movie. Spielberg has brought the era, the city, the men and women, the politics, and the war to the big screen in a hyper-realistic manner reminiscent of “Saving Private Ryan”. He shows the complicated tapestry President Lincoln had to weave to keep the Union together as the war reached the final days, while trying to prepare for the eventual reconciliation of the Southern states. You see the weariness on General Ulysses Grant’s face; see the bloody aftermath of battle in a Union hospital; and see the struggles of many people as they thought about what freeing the slaves would truly mean to the nation.

Daniel Day-Lewis is incredible in his portrayal of President Lincoln. One of the greatest compliments to an actor is that when you go to a film, you do not “see” the actor, but the character. In this movie, you do not see Daniel Day-Lewis, two-time Academy Award winner; you see President Abraham Lincoln. His mannerisms, how he walked, held his hands, how he spoke were all researched and performed in great detail. You see a man dealing with the weight of war, and with the knowledge of the cost in human lives. A man who was wounded by the death of his son, and who struggles to deal with his wife, who has been even more grievously wounded by their son’s death. A man who understood the true genesis of the war, and his unique position to end the abomination of slavery. You hear the stories President Lincoln used to tell. Lewis plays President Lincoln as a real person, not the sanitized “saint” we so often read about.

Sally Field is excellent in the portrayal of Mary Todd Lincoln, who has often been vilified in books by her erratic actions. David Strathairn is exceptional as Secretary of State William Seward, who is often only remembered today for “Seward’s Folly” and the purchase of Alaska. Mr. Strathairn has an impressive resume of work (see his turn as Edward R. Murrow in “Good Night, and Good Luck”) and is a strong supporting character. Tommy Lee Jones could have been accused of playing Representative Thaddeus Stevens “over the top,” but when you research Representative Stevens, you find that Mr. Jones’ portrayal may not have been far from the mark. His ill-tempered, quick-witted, sarcastic, and eloquent persona is perfect for an actor like Jones. Other cast members are excellent, with my particular favorites being Bruce McGill as Secretary of War Stanton, and Jackie Earle Haley as Alexander Stephens.

Unlike many movies in recent years, “Lincoln” does not fall into the trap of overwhelming special effects, or a soundtrack that detracts from the movie experience instead of bringing the audience closer to the story. The visual imagery in the movie is breathtaking; the soundtrack works well to bring the story to life. The acting performances are often understated, and often the movie shows the power of speech and the raw exercise of power in politics. The President’s assassination is handled in a subdued manner (no graphic scenes of the shooting or death).

So, what to make of the movie from a Christian perspective?

The movie is rated PG-13, and shows violent battle scenes, but not anywhere on par with the ferocity or scale of the opening scenes of “Saving Private Ryan”. A Christian is saddened to realize that war is a reflection of the sinful state of man. The movie portrays the love the Lincolns’ had for their sons Willie, Tad, and Robert, to include the grief shown by both parents over the death of Willie. It shows the inability of Abraham and Robert to engage in a close relationship; these are all emotions and areas which we see today in our families. Many Christians struggle when a child is lost, and can find themselves far from the LORD during this time. President Lincoln’s faith is not overtly on display, and historians have differences on what the President’s true views were on Christianity. The movie shows the conflict of slavery in the mid-19th century, and how, even in the North, many white people were simply unable to cross the line and accept a colored person as an equal. They could believe that slavery was wrong, and even a sin; but they could not accept a colored person having the right to own property, or to vote.

The Bible tells us that all men are sinful and are in need of a Savior. The movie shows how patronage was used (legal in 1865) to procure votes from Democratic Representatives during the lame duck Congress. Patronage was the practice of a politician rewarding supporters with government jobs, and some might argue that patronage was simply a tool used in the mid-19th century to “get things done”. I would ask simply if you would believe Jesus would approve of providing a position to someone not based on who they were, but what votes or funds they brought to a political party or campaign.

The movie portrays Representative Stephens, a long-time supporter of full equality for colored people, speaking to the House of Representatives and lying by stating that equality of the races was not his view but only equality before the law. He did so out of political expediency, knowing that if the newspapers reported his radical idea of racial equality, the Amendment might fail during the House vote. After the vote, a colleague approaches Stevens to say they were nauseated by his lie; Stevens replies (in essence) that means justified the end result. This showed that Stevens was not ready to trust the LORD with the vote, but felt he had to lie to ensure that the Amendment was passed in the House of Representatives. After the vote, Representative Stephens is also shown going home and getting into bed with his colored housekeeper. It is clear that they are not married, and the Bible clearly states this is adultery.

I had the most trouble with the language. I was particularly sensitive to the use of the LORD’s name, but there is also a lot of vulgarity, with numerous f***, son of a bi***, da**, cr**, pi**, sh**, he** throughout the movie. There were also uses of the name of Jesus in a profane manner. Mostly, I was very disappointed that the were over 10 uses of “g** d***”. I usually draw the line at the use of the LORD’s name, but have to admit that any movie that strives to be historically accurate is going to be portraying the life of a sinner. Sinners often use profanity, and often take the LORD’s name in vain. The philosophical battle of truthfully bringing a historical person to the screen is in conflict with the command that no one should take the name of the LORD in vain.

Ultimately, “Lincoln” shows us the battle our nation fought in 1865. Many would consider the battle to be the one fought by the Northern and Southern armies. I would submit that the battle most eloquently and powerfully brought to the screen in “Lincoln” is the battle over the worth of an enslaved people, and the struggle of a nation to come to terms with the question of equality between the races.

As Christians, we are called to salt and light to a fallen world, and that we are to serve the lowest of the low. We are called to love one another, as Christ loved us. This movie is a reminder of the depths of sin we can fall into, and the terrible consequences of that sin.

Violence: Moderate to heavy / Profanity: Heavy / Sex/Nudity: Mild

See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.


Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Comments below:
Positive
Positive—A powerful movie that tells the tale of the political and military cost of passing the 13th Amendment of the US Constitution, which forever abolished slavery in the nation. With so much irrelevant and mindless drivel coming out of the entertainment industry, it is refreshing to have a movie with so much historic importance and relevance to us today. The movie takes us behind the scenes into the political maneuverings and posturing to build a 2/3 majority vote in the US House of Representatives to pass the Amendment. We are given a close up view of President Abraham Lincoln as well, and the struggles he faced as a war-time president, as a politician and family man. Because of this, I recommend folks to see this movie.

Yet, sadly, the director, Steven Spielberg has saw it fit to modernize the conversations and as thus filled the dialog with at least 33 profanities/swear words. This is rather unfortunate as the foul language detracts from the movie and in every case was unnecessary. The Civil War period was a different time, and the conversation between folks then was NOT tainted with profanity as the people tended to be more respectful and religious in their speech. I am not sure why Spielberg tends to taint his films (those for older audiences) with this sort of unnecessary and non-historic dialog (this is true also of his “Saving Private Ryan,” where the characters are diarrhea mouths, something rather difficult to find in average folks even in the 1940s). The movie would be much improved had they not added in the unnecessary and profuse foul-language.

For more accurate period films of the Civil War, I recommend “Gettysburg” and “Gods and Generals.”
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Doug Mastriano, age 48 (USA)
Positive—I am straddling the fence between positive and neutral rating for this movie. I expected the acting to be good, and all the leading roles were played very well. Daniel Day Lewis was excellent as Lincoln, but it was Sally Field’s performance of Mary Todd Lincoln that impressed me even more. I find her interpretation of “Molly” very plausible, as a woman who lost her emotional balance after the death of a child. The movie is focused very much on the politics of getting enough votes to pass the 13th amendment abolishing slavery. I found this historical information to be interesting. However, I was not impressed with the simplistic, rather melodramatic direction and the maudlin music. The movie is mostly worthy of the subject matter, so I am glad I saw it.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Halyna, age 66 (USA)
Positive—Reviewers” opinions on this film range from “masterpiece,” to “the perfect cure for insomnia.” I’m not your average movie-goer, but I wasn’t bored a moment of this masterful exploration of one of the most pivotal moments in our nation’s history. Daniel Day-Lewis” Lincoln is charismatic and likable, but also portrays Lincoln as an undeniable leader. I didn’t anticipate a script as witty and clever as it is impacting—rarely does a minute go by when some quip or humorous twist isn’t present, ranging from good, old-fashioned senate insults to the humorous stories Lincoln is fond of telling his cabinet.

The costume design and interior work is gorgeous, as is the cinematography. Spielberg makes some interesting directing choices that work in unexpected ways, sometimes borrowing from famous paintings and, at other times, tugging on our heartstrings in unanticipated ways. I regret that there’s so much abuse of God’s name, but in every other way for me it’s the best movie of the year.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Charity, age 29 (USA)
Positive—Caution: May Contain Spoilers. I saw “Lincoln” yesterday with my two closest friends, and… Before I get into that, I just have to mention that the show time I had planned to see the film at was sold out (I’d expected that for the final installment of “Twilight,” but not for “Lincoln”), and the theater house where the 4:50 show of “Lincoln” was playing was almost entirely packed, I kid you not. I was surprised, as I thought most people wouldn’t be interested in a historical drama, but at the same time, I was pleased at the turnout for the movie.

Now to what I think of the movie. “Lincoln” is a well-acted, well-directed and more or less well-written depiction of the days in January and several days of April 1865 where President Lincoln struggles with his divided Cabinet to get the Thirteenth Amendment ratified. The opening scene is all the glimpse we get of the Civil War. The remainder of the movie is straight-up talk. Don’t let that stop you from experiencing this monumental motion picture, though. Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field and Tommy Lee Jones play Abraham Lincoln, Mary Todd Lincoln and Thaddeus Stevens very well. I think we can expect Academy Award nominations for all three of them come Oscar® time. Other actors who give good performances in the limited screen time they have are Gloria Reuben (ER) as Elizabeth Keckley, confidant and dress-maker to Mary Todd Lincoln, Jared Harris (“Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows”) as General Ulysses S. Grant, Joseph Gordon-Levitt (“Angels In The Outfield,” “The Dark Knight Rises”) as Robert Todd Lincoln, S. Epatha Merkenson as Thaddeus Stevens” housekeeper, James Spader as W. N. Bilbo, David Straithairn as Secretary Of State William Seward and Hal Holbrook as Senator Preston Blair. more »
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
—D, age 26 (USA)
Positive—Just so everyone knows, this film is not a war epic but instead a political drama. There is a brief battle scene in the beginning of the movie, but it only lasted less than a minute. It was mostly bloodless, but you did see a lot of fast pace hand to hand combat with soldiers being stabbed, etc. This film had a very strong script. However, it was marred with quite a bit of profanity, which was very unfortunate. I’m not going to lie though; at times the use of profanity seemed to fit into the intense situations the characters were in. But in others, well, it just seem misplaced and uncalled for, especially the abuses of God’s name and the use of the F-word twice.

Still, this film solely relies on its dialog, and it is very well written. The acting is phenomenal, Spielberg did a great job directing, and there was some great cinematography and editing as well. I do advise however that this film not be viewed by anyone under the age of 14 due to the subject matter and of course, the foul language. It would’ve been great to see more of Lincoln’s faith displayed on screen, but at least there were still some spiritual references which was nice.

I felt that a little more could’ve been told about Lincoln’s legacy though. This is why I knocked the film down half a star. I felt that there should have been more discussion about slavery itself and the ending felt a little too rushed. I understand that Lincoln’s death wasn’t the point of the movie but the ending seemed just a little too sudden even though it did end on a great uplifting note. All that said, this is a great historical film which is a step above Spielberg’s “War Horse” and is sure to be an American classic for generations to come. Although Lincoln didn’t blow me away, I was still satisfied with this historical drama. “Argo,” “The Master,” and “Les Miserables” may give “Lincoln” a run for its money come awards season.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Curtis, age 20 (USA)
Positive—I recently saw “Lincoln” and was pleased with the result. Daniel Day-Lewis was marvelous as our 16th president, likewise for Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln. In fact, I’d be surprised if those two, as well as Tommy Lee Jones and David Straithairn, DIDN’T get Oscar® nominations. Normally, we see President Lincoln as a saint that saved the United States from being divided permanently. Daniel Day-Lewis portrays the president as a saint and a sinner, breathing life into a larger-than-life figure of U.S. History. Steven Spielberg never ceases to amaze me as a filmmaker; the man is a genius. While not as great as “Saving Private Ryan” or “Schindler’s List,” “Lincoln” is one of the best films I have seen by Spielberg, and it is one of the best films I have seen all year. As far as morality is concerned, I did object to the use of the profanity that was peppered throughout the film, as well as some mild adult situations. With that being said, the majority of the film is morally grounded.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Shannon H., age 31 (USA)
Positive—I was not necessarily looking forward to the movie, but was surprised by how much I enjoyed it, and how quickly the time went by. It was interesting that it showed a very small part of Lincoln’s life. My one word of warning was the language. Everything was in there, and in there often, which was surprising.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Wesley, age 49 (USA)
Positive—This movie was a seemingly historically valid representation of the struggles to get the 13th Amendment passed. The language used throughout was less than desirable, and the characters frequently made decisions that were morally off, under the presumed thought that the end justifies the means. That being said, I thoroughly enjoyed the movie and want to see it again. Right does win out in the end, at least as far as the passing of the amendment is concerned. It also made me want to pursue more knowledge about Lincoln and this particular time in our history.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Chief, age 52 (USA)
Positive—In reference the reviewer’s comment “After the vote, Representative Stephens is also shown going home and getting into bed with his colored housekeeper. It is clear that they are not married, and the Bible clearly states this is adultery.” During that era inter-racial marriage was illegal and unrecognized everywhere in the country. Though their marriage was not legally recognized, Stephens was still committed to his widowed housekeeper and was recognized as “Mrs. Stevens” by their friends. I was disappointed by this gross oversight by the reviewer. It is quite obvious if you looked up the history that Stephens loved his common law wife and stayed with her, despite the immoral and racist laws of the time.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4
—DQ, age 48 (USA)
Positive—A truly great movie with superb acting and a good score by John Williams. And it’s refreshing to see Spielberg make a film that relies on in-depth character development, rather than motorcycle chases and helicopter crashes.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Larry, age 44 (USA)
Negative—As a Christian, I should have heeded my church’s attitude towards going to the movies! I hadn’t gone to a movie in 3 years, but I like politics and history, so I thought I’d enjoy it, but I didn’t. Most all scenes are in an office. The use of the Lord’s name in vain repeatedly throughout made me cringe! I expected it to be more of a documentary, but it is a movie by Steven Spielberg, and I shouldn’t have expected any more than what I got! The whole movie makes Lincoln look like a wimp, his wife bosses him around and yells at him. He just didn’t get portrayed as a leader. Only one scene in the end did he ever act like a leader. The forwardness of women in the movie isn’t accurate with the time period. Blacks and women sitting and watching the political action on an upper level was probably not accurate, either. Don’t waste your time and money on a movie that curses the Lord. I wish I would have read some reviews before I saw it. Live and learn.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3
—Rosie, age 41 (USA)
Positive—I’m a Christ-follower and thought “Lincoln” was an excellent movie. Your review was helpful, but I was appalled by two of the elements of your review. 1. Your list all profanities, but the worst one of all in my opinion: “n***r”. Of course I wasn’t surprised it was said in the movie, but I would also expect any other offensive word due to the graphic, accurate portrayal of the Civil War, slavery and emotional volatility of this era. I’m just very surprised you didn’t mention this word so as to prepare movie goers.

2. You say that “Sinners often use profanity… ” The way I read that you are insinuating that Christians don’t use profanity and are “not sinners.” Let’s face it, many non-Christians may read your review and find this statement hypocritical and naive because of the imperfect Christians they know. I would like to see you present a more fair and accurate view of Christians who, as we all know, are sinners saved only by the grace of God. Your reviews could be a tool through which God can draw the unsaved closer to Him—my fear is that statements like the one above may do just the opposite. All in all, I do appreciate your review and felt better prepared for the movie because of it. The movie took us into that time and place very accurately and did not disappoint.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Tami, age 42 (USA)
Positive—I had wanted to see this movie since it came out back in November of 2012. As usual, I ended up waiting till it came to DVD. It was sooo worth the wait. I absolutely LOVED “Lincoln.” That being said, I did have a few minor issues with the content of this movie. First and foremost was the fact that there was some language used. The worst of which was the F-word used twice (The first time is more muttered. So, it’s easily missed.) Then, GD used, I’m guessing around 10-13 times. There was only one scene of violence, which was a Civil War battle scene right at the beginning. One scene near the end shows Tommy Lee Jones” character, Representative Thaddeus Stevens, in bed with his black slave… hinting at a sexual relationship outside of marriage.

Now, on to the things I loved about this movie. First of all, I’m a history buff. So, this movie was right up my alley. Secondly, I have loved Steven Spielberg as a director going all the way back to E. T. The man knows how to get great performances out of his actors. Speaking of great performances, there are some AMAZING ones on display here. The best one is Daniel Day-Lewis, of course, portraying Lincoln. He not only plays Lincoln… you almost get the feeling you’re staring into the face of the Great Emancipator. And, you really get involved in his struggle to end the war and abolish slavery. more »
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 5
—Jared, age 33 (USA)
Positive—This historical drama is a meditation on American politics. The acting. Particularly by Day-Lewis as Lincoln, but also by the supporting cast, is exceptional. The setting is the Congress getting ready to vote on abolishing slavery. The film separates us emotionally from the fact of war, concentrating on this large fragmented Congress. The American people want to end the war, but few are prepared to accept slaves as equal. Lincoln by hook or crook, bribes and patronage jobs, and delaying and concealing a peace overture from the south, struggles to find the right course and carry it out, while others seek to manipulate him and accuse him of doing nothing, often telling stories a a way to deflect and use others.

This is a somehow innocent yet primitive era. There are no TV cameras following people around, and in many scenes Lincoln seems ignored as he rides around. There is no Fox News, but Congressmen hurl insults at each other. Sometimes there is inspiring rhetoric, other times foul language. Yet important work is done for good or bad reasons, by people who seemingly could not otherwise agree.

This film inspires different reactions based on peoples” expectations. Lincoln like Biblical figures like Abraham, Jacob, David and Solomon are often honored from a distance in ways that don’t hold up on close examination. What would Jesus do in these situations, and more importantly what would he have us do? In particular how do the ends justify the means? Is politics like a sausage that we don’t want to see made, and when is it for good rather than bad? This film should inspire thoughts about that.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Stanley Hirtle, age 68 (USA)
Neutral
Neutral—The movie was mostly all about the vote in Congress to free the slaves, with all the political haggling that goes along with it. Only a short battle scene of a men fighting hand to hand in muddy watered sloppy area at night. Kids would get bored, because of all the inside politics that Lincoln had to go through to get votes to free the slaves. Tommy Lee Jones plays the stern speaker of the house Congressman Thaddeus Stevens who was for freedom. History has it that he never married, and it was rumored that his house keeper of mixed race was his alleged common law wife. Steven Spielberg (a liberal) made sure we saw him kiss (nothing more than a peck) his house maid, while they shared the same bed, making the rumor, now an assumed truth for millions that this speaker of the house was a fornicator. (Did we need to know this assumption as truth?)

The music score was hardly noticeable, which was a shame, being that the music was by John Williams. The movie did not touch my heart in any way (and no music to help in this area), it was just a historical movie with good acting. For historical buffs, like me, it was a good film for Hollywood to make. I did not like to see Lincoln cuss and use the Lord’s name in vain. Did Lincoln do that in real life? I don’t think there is any historical proof that Lincoln did. Thanks Spielberg, the liberal bone in you came out there. The movie kept my interest but I felt no passion that hit me.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
—Robert Garcia, age 65 (USA)
Negative
Negative—I enjoy historical topics, so I really anticipated this film. This film is not accurate in its historical grammar, at all. President Lincoln and the other leaders would of never used the profanity portrayed in this movie. They were intellectual, highly educated people, who took pride in their use of the English language. Use of profanity started around 1920s. This movie is another Hollywood production with an Oscar® winning director Steven Spielberg distorting true reality. The end result is they brought an intellectually revered president down to their level, and that is sad, very sad.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Padre Bill, age 55 (USA)
Negative—I don’t know what movie the other people critiqued on this Web site, but the “Lincoln” movie I saw was very slow moving, and full of boring political jargon. Abe was portrayed as a almost moronic man, verbally abused by his wife, lost in thought and spewing long boring yarns to get a laugh! Also, they were trying to show that the Republicans were trying to buy the vote, which I don’t think was historically correct. Tommy Lee Jones’ character was good, till the surprise ending!?!?! I give this one 3 and a half yawns. Don’t waste your time.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Good / Moviemaking quality: 3
—Tony, age 54 (USA)
Negative—Any time the secular media starts to sing the praises of Abraham Lincoln, either in film or in print, Christians should start to hear alarm bells ringing and waken from the slumber of near idol-worship that has dulled our ears through 150 years of government sponsored propaganda. What kind of man was Lincoln for Christians to honor? From a standpoint of faith, Mr. Lincoln was a notorious infidel who spent most of his life scoffing at the gospel message and mocking God’s ministers. He held Christian beliefs in contempt, denying the deity of Christ, the Trinity, the virgin birth, inspiration of Scripture, miracles, etc. He never joined a church or made a profession of faith; he participated in séances in the White House to try and communicate with his dead son, and then laughed about it. He even mocked his own prayer proclamation; when chided by his long-time acquaintance Judge James N. Nelson, who noted Lincoln’s Thanksgiving messages were contrary to his known convictions on the subject, Lincoln responded: “Oh! This is some of Seward’s nonsense, and it pleases the fools!”

From a standpoint of personal morality, Lincoln had a filthy vocabulary, as shown by his habit of telling profane, vulgar jokes to amuse his cronies and other men, some of whom were scandalized by his obscenity. He had a callous disregard for suffering caused by his war. In March 1865, at City Point, Virginia, Lincoln met with Grant and Sherman; he asked to hear stories about how Sherman’s “bummers” vandalized churches and raped, pillaged and murdered unarmed civilians in Georgia and South Carolina. Lincoln guffawed when he heard these stories. This disturbing scene was recorded in Sherman’s memoirs and by U.S. Adm. David Porter who was an eyewitness to the meeting. more »
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: none
—Robert, age 55 (USA)
Negative—To my fellow Christians—I could definitely not recommend this move. There were so many profanities (of the worst kind) by using the Lord’s name in vain. It is so offensive to the Holy Spirit dwelling within us. I always leave in the middle of movies such as this—I had my grown son visiting and felt I had really compromised by sitting through this move. I will never do that again.

For myself, it is necessary to remember the words in Philippians regarding “keeping our thoughts on that which is holy, pure and lovely”. I know it is very hard to find wholesome movies that we can even watch and enjoy today.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Cheryl Hoyopatubbi, age 61 (USA)
Negative—This is simply a political propaganda movie, trying to jump on the bandwagon of “evil white Americans who hurt the blacks.” It leaves out a lot of vital facts, and while doing it’s best to portray Lincoln as a hero—makes him someone easy to hate. People love to talk about how horrible it was for whites to have slaves. They forget a couple of things… Free blacks in the South owned slaves at a rate drastically higher than whites. Such as, in New Orleans in 1960, there were something like 10k free blacks. About 2, 800 of them owned slaves themselves.

The south was in a brutal cycle, and as Tocqueville noted in “Democracy in America” they *couldn't* just free the slaves. It was far too complicated an issue for that. According to pretty much every credible source around, the slave trade could not have existed the way it did if there wasn’t a huge amount of Africans who captured and sold slaves as a business. Slavers weren’t raiding poor villages for slaves—they were hitting up the local tribes, who acted as wholesalers. Sad fact that people ignore. more »
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Andrew, age 21 (USA)
Comments from non-viewers
Negative—As a Christian, I refuse to pay for and go to a movie where God’s name is taken in vain. There are numerous Web sites out there which will tell you positive and negative aspects of a movie, so that you don’t unknowingly subject yourself or your family to movie content that all Christians should refuse to be a part of. I believe Lincoln would be horrified to know how he was portrayed, and the profanity that Steven Speilberg forced his character to say.
My Ratings: Moral rating: / Moviemaking quality:
—Leigh, age 48 (USA)
Negative—I haven’t seen this movie, and, for that reason, I wanted to find out if there is language, specifically using the Lord’s name in vain. I got my answer, and I won’t be watching this movie. I’m extremely disappointed that there are so many movies that a basically good, and Hollywood ruins them with horrific language.
—Linda, age 63 (USA)
Negative—I watched roughly one hour of this movie and left because of the foul language. I heard approximately 5-6 G-D’s in this one hour time span. There was some other filth words said, but using the Lord’s name in vain was the worse. I do not recommend this movie for Christians.
—Bobby Downs, age 63 (USA)
Negative—We viewed this movie until the third Commandment was violated.
—3rd_commandment_violation, age 46 (USA)

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