I thought Hal Holbrook was dead.
Really, the thought isn't that unreasonable, since he's eighty-seven or so. But he keeps popping up in recent movies and things - he's working more regularly than most popular young actors, based on his IMDB record.
Every time I see him, it surprises me.
All this to say that during my forced rest this week, I ran off Lincoln on Amazon (because Netflix streaming never has the good movies).
Mid nineteenth century politics may not be everyone's favorite subject, especially when you already know what happens, but Spielberg manages to make it interesting. The thirteenth amendment abolishing slavery had passed the Senate; the movie follows the machinations behind the scenes to secure the votes to pass the amendment in the House.
Heh - and you thought appointments-for-votes was a new tactic.
I could rave for a while on the production values. I've not enough historical knowledge to know if things were truly authentic (and the rather lengthy list of errata on the film's entry suggests they may not be), but I do know Spielberg and team succeeded in setting an atmosphere that enhanced the storytelling. John Williams wrote the music - some of his best movie music in years, I think.
The one thing I was initially a bit worried about was the choice of Sally Fields for Mary Lincoln. To my surprise, except for one rather over the top argument with the President, she stayed both believable and in character. I guess it's not her fault I can only think of her as the flying nun.
At least I don't think she's dead.