Wick's Civil War Movies (7) Alert-me-btn





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Created Jul 23, 2011 11:40AM PST • Updated Jul 03, 2016 01:16AM PST

The Second American Revolution or fulfillment of the original? Fundamental to America either way.
A great source of movie material to boot.

Average

  • Great
  •  
  • 72 Points
Title Released Trust Weighted Summary Viewable
1st Gods and Generals
2003 Very Good 83 Points
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The battles of 1st Bull Run, Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville get brought to terribly glorious life in this opening salvo of a planned Civil War trilogy. Funded by a son of the South, Gods and Generals focuses on sympathetic Confederate heroes Stonewall Jackson and Robert E. Lee. It could just as well be titled “The Stonewall Jackson Story,” notwithstanding Union hero Joshua Chamberlain’s significant play.

Stars and Bars hagiography notwithstanding, G&G proves noble to both sides even if it does little more than nod to the unfathomable predicament of the slaves. As a purely mil…

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Added Jul 23, 2011 11:40AM PST • Updated Sep 02, 2011 11:50PM PST
2nd Gettysburg
1993 Very Good 83 Points
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The Civil War’s decisive battle can get extensively aired over nearly 4┬Ż hours, and does in Gettysburg. The real battle lasted three days in July of 1863, say 36 hours actually fighting. The movie covers fully an eighth of that. Stamina is required, a long plane ride ideal.

Consider it a feast of historical fascination for American patriots, history buffs and war movie fans.

A literal cast of thousands contributes to its realism. So do the first rate actors who star as Union and Confederate officers: Martin Sheen, Stephen Lang and Jeff Daniels among them.

Gettysburg stands …

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Added Jul 23, 2011 11:40AM PST • Updated Sep 02, 2011 11:50PM PST
3rd Glory
1989 Very Good 83 Points
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Old fashioned and reverential, Glory shines in its rendering of an important bit of Americana, its vivid recreation of several Civil War battles, and via Denzel Washington’s Oscar-winning performance. The important Americana consists of free black volunteers fighting in the Union army, ultimately going down to defeat in their final battle, but distinguishing themselves as tremendous soldiers. Thus they paved the way for almost 200,000 additional black Union soldiers, a surge that President Lincoln credited with helping turn the tide of the war. Glory indeed.

Nominated for five Oscar…

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Added Jul 23, 2011 11:40AM PST • Updated Sep 02, 2011 11:50PM PST
4th Gone with the Wind
1939 Perfect 71 Points
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Gone with the Wind has something for everyone, and a lot of it over almost four hours. History, passion, racial controversy: Male or female, war movie or romance fan, this movie demands that you give a damn. Oh yeah, that famous line of Rhett Butler’s – “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn.” – really works at the very end. Rarely does such an iconic climax turn out to be so non-anticlimactic.

Is Gone with the Wind worth watching in this day and age? Yes. Notwithstanding its dated depiction of slaves, it remains highly entertaining and illuminating, a must-see movie, albeit one …

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Added Jul 23, 2011 11:51AM PST • Updated Sep 02, 2011 11:50PM PST
5th Cold Mountain
2003 Great 17 Points
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I loved the human-interest slant on this tale of the Civil War. Jude Law’s undying love for Kidman draws him back to her despite the risk of being a deserter towards the end of the war. The story is engaging, and the cast is top notch. Zellweger is not quite believable as a hardened southern gal, but the Law/Kidman chemistry is apparent, Sutherland is fantastic, and many other recognizable actors fill in as characters that pull you in to the life that was the south during the civil war.

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Added Jul 23, 2011 11:51AM PST • Updated Jul 23, 2011 11:51AM PST
6th Free State of Jones
2016 Really Great 83 Points
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Newton Knight is a newly essential Matthew McConaughey role that finally knights Newt Knight as a true American hero. Even more, Free State of Jones is an only-in-America story, so corny it could only be true. A deeply moral white man frees enslaved blacks and marries a black woman during the Civil War. Whaaat?

Knight was a 19th century Mississippi ├╝bermensch: physically, morally and martially superior to those around him. He was a burly 6’4" at a time when the average man was a skinny 5’8". A yeoman farmer who had no slaves, he depended on his own labor to feed his family, as did most…

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Added Jul 02, 2016 04:21PM PST • Updated Jul 03, 2016 01:15AM PST
7th Lincoln
2012 Really Great 86 Points
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A fine, fine movie, Lincoln delivers an outstanding history lesson centered on an iconic performance for the ages. With it, Stephen Spielberg continues his own ascent into the American pantheon, while Daniel Day-Lewis creates his single most memorable role.

The movie focuses on a great legislative battle Lincoln fought in the last months of his life, an apt lens through which to view the man in full. Canny and idealistic, melancholy yet jovial, riven by familial tension, Abraham Lincoln comes alive in the movie as fully human yet worthy of his demigod status.

Lincoln delivers a …

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Added Jul 02, 2016 04:48PM PST • Updated Jul 03, 2016 01:15AM PST

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