Anthony Hopkins seemed a curious choice to play Nixon– a President who had more angles than Frank Lloyd Wright on a bender; but I was undeterred. Until I saw it, after which I was completely deterred. JFK was proof that real history and cinematic history take mutually exclusive escalators.
W was bizarre, cause he’s still alive. I imagined myself walking out of the theater with him.
“What did you think of the movie, Mr President?”
“I bought a ticket for Anaconda 3, it took me half the Goddamn movie to figure out I was in the wrong theater!”
I figured Lincoln would be different since half of Hollywood (the good half) was in it and Spielberg was managing. This guy could direct a porn flick and make the dialogue between the pizza delivery man and the divorcee seem eloquent.
The bet with my son was simple. Where was Spielberg’s first signature flourish going to come in? I set the over/under at ten minutes, to which my son took the under. And won. It was right on the heels of a brilliant opening sequence where Lincoln steals a few moments with a band of Union soldiers. His exchange with a soldier in the colored regiment is powerful stuff; true and logical.
Perfect! Stop there!
But Spielberg don’t. So he has the black soldier walk off whilst reciting the Gettysburg Address. Spielberg is like a New York cab ride, sans the risk of decapitation via head on collision. You just know he’s gonna get you to your destination, and you’re gonna have a hell of a story on the other side.
And so I did. And now my Presidential flick losing streak has been snapped. I just hope they don’t mess it up with a sequel . . .
My Top Five Damns:
5. David Strathairn (William Seward) Damn if he never sucks.
4. Sally Field- (Mary Todd) Another Oscar speech. Damn!
3. Daniel Day Lewis- I’d watch him read a damn cereal box.
2. Tommy Lee Jones- (Thaddeus Stevens) He’s serious damn bi’ness.
1. James Spader- (William Bilbo) I didn’t see him coming, but damn.
Lincoln Logs . . .
-Haberdasheries were the Apple stores of that era.
-Wrong Way Sign of the Times? Lindsay Lohan has security detail, Lincoln had none.
-People used to get more dressed up to take a piss than I do to go to work.
-I never understood snuff.
-Pausing before answering in a movie makes you cool. In real life? A liar.
-Movie Mistake Alert!- When Lincoln is speaking to Seward, you can see a camera light in the mirror. And Oscars, if you look closely.
-Tarantino’s ending would’ve guaranteed a sequel.