MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 267 this week

Abe Lincoln in Illinois (1940)

Approved  |   |  Biography, Drama, History  |  19 April 1940 (USA)
7.4
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.4/10 from 1,161 users  
Reviews: 29 user | 15 critic

Humble Abraham Lincoln gains the respect of his Illinois neighbors, growing in stature and respect until he is elected President in 1860 and departs for Washington.

Director:

Writers:

(by), (screen play), 1 more credit »
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

ON DISC

IMDb Picks: April

Visit our IMDb Picks section to see our recommendations of movies and TV shows coming out in April.

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 25 titles
created 24 Dec 2010
 
a list of 31 titles
created 11 Feb 2012
 
a list of 43 titles
created 16 May 2012
 
a list of 31 titles
created 08 Aug 2012
 
a list of 30 titles
created 21 Oct 2013
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Abe Lincoln in Illinois (1940)

Abe Lincoln in Illinois (1940) on IMDb 7.4/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Abe Lincoln in Illinois.

User Polls

Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A fictionalized account of the early life of the American president as a young lawyer facing his greatest court case.

Director: John Ford
Stars: Henry Fonda, Alice Brady, Marjorie Weaver
Certificate: Passed Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

82 year old inventor and entrepreneur Thomas Alva Edison is honored in 1929 and he reflects back on his sixty year career of scientific achievement.

Director: Clarence Brown
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Rita Johnson, Lynne Overman
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A man recalls his relationships with the women he loved as he tries to help another man try to understand them as well.

Director: Muriel Box
Stars: Laurence Harvey, Julie Harris, Diane Cilento
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

True story of the doctor who considered it was not immoral to search for a drug that would cure syphillis.

Director: William Dieterle
Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Ruth Gordon, Otto Kruger
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

An episodic biography of the 16th President of the United States.

Director: D.W. Griffith
Stars: Walter Huston, Una Merkel, William L. Thorne
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A cuckolded embezzler on the verge of suicide is helped by a tout, an alcoholic playwright, and a pick-up girl to reimburse the money with a gambling sting.

Directors: Ben Hecht, Lee Garmes
Stars: Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Rita Hayworth, Thomas Mitchell
Kitty Foyle (1940)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Kitty Foyle, a hard-working white-collar girl from a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania low, middle-class family, meets and falls in love with young socialite Wyn Strafford but his family is against her.

Director: Sam Wood
Stars: Ginger Rogers, Dennis Morgan, James Craig
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An Englishman on a Ruritarian holiday must impersonate the king when the rightful monarch, a distant cousin, is drugged and kidnapped.

Directors: John Cromwell, W.S. Van Dyke
Stars: Ronald Colman, Madeleine Carroll, C. Aubrey Smith
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

An American tanker is sunk by a German U-boat and the survivors spend eleven days at sea on a raft. They're next assigned to the liberty ship "Sea Witch" bound for Murmansk through the sub-stalked North Atlantic.

Directors: Lloyd Bacon, Byron Haskin, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Raymond Massey, Alan Hale
Comedy | Music | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Bandleader Kay Kyser takes his troupe of nutty musicians, goofball comics and pretty girl singers on a tour around the world to entertain the troops during World War II.

Director: Allan Dwan
Stars: Kay Kyser, Mischa Auer, Joan Davis
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

With husband Dennis preoccupied with a business deal, Carmelita decides to teach him a lesson by running off to Reno and filing for divorce.

Director: Leslie Goodwins
Stars: Lupe Velez, Leon Errol, Donald Woods
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Tony (Charles Laughton), a successful but illiterate middle-aged grape farmer, sends the photograph of his handsome young foreman, Joe (William Gargan), instead of his own, hoping to woo ... See full summary »

Director: Garson Kanin
Stars: Carole Lombard, Charles Laughton, William Gargan
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Mary Howard ...
Minor Watson ...
Alan Baxter ...
Harvey Stephens ...
Howard Da Silva ...
Jack Armstrong (as Howard da Silva)
Dorothy Tree ...
...
Maurice Murphy ...
Louis Jean Heydt ...
Clem Bevans ...
Harlan Briggs ...
Herbert Rudley ...
Edit

Storyline

Biopic of Abe Lincoln, 16th President of he United States, from his early days in backwoods Kentucky to his election as President. After a time running livestock to New Orleans, he settles in New Salem where he meets and falls in love with Ann Rutledge who is already engaged to someone. Abe makes a home for himself in New Salem, eventually running a store and becoming the postmaster. He's popular with the locals and is eventually elected to the State legislature but afterward established himself in the practice of law. He eventually meets Mary Todd who would become his wife and and is sent to Washington as a Congressman before he is elected president. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 April 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Abraham Lincoln  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

John Cromwell:  abolitionist John Brown. In his next film role, Santa Fe Trail (1940), Raymond Massey portrayed John Brown. Massey went on to reprise the role of Lincoln in the 1953 stage dramatization of the poem "John Brown's Body", in the first television production of "The Day Lincoln Was Shot", and in the Cinerama film "How The West Was Won" (in which he had no spoken lines). He reprised the role of John Brown onstage in "John Brown's Body" and in the 1955 low-budget film "Seven Angry Men". But Massey played mostly villains onscreen. See more »

Goofs

The Lincoln-Douglas debates took place in 1858 - one year before John Brown attempted to seize the Harpers Ferry arsenal. See more »

Quotes

Jack Armstrong: [to the crowd] I tell you, you all ought to listen to the judge. He got a round belly but a level head. No one can do nothin' with me without lickin' me first!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Henry Fonda: The Man and His Movies (1982) See more »

Soundtracks

The Battle Cry of Freedom
(1862) (uncredited)
Music by George Frederick Root
Played by a band in a parade
Reprized by an Army band as Lincoln rides to the White House
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The Lincoln Standard
11 February 2008 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Besides Raymond Massey, a whole flock of actors have been known for playing America's sixteenth president, Henry Fonda, Walter Huston, Sam Waterston, Hal Holbrook, Dennis Weaver, Gregory Peck, John Carradine. Character actor Frank McGlyn practically made a career of playing The Great Emancipator whenever Honest Abe was a character in a film. But the standard has been set by Raymond Massey who did Lincoln in Robert Sherwood's play for 472 performances on Broadway during the 1938-1939 season and he repeats the title role in Abe Lincoln in Illinois for this film version.

I've no doubt that Sherwood used as source material for his play a lot of information based on Carl Sandburg's biography, Lincoln the Prarie Years. At that time Sandburg was considered the unofficial custodian of the Lincoln legend and mythology. Of course he based a lot of his work on the biography of Lincoln written by his law partner William Herndon played here by Alan Baxter. Herndon's well known antipathy for Mary Todd Lincoln as the shrewish wife of his good friend comes through her in Ruth Gordon's portrayal. It should be said that Mary Lincoln regarded Herndon as an opportunist drunk and he certainly did have a substance abuse problem.

Gene Lockhart as Lincoln's rival Stephen A. Douglas is well done also, though Lockhart was a bit tall for the part. Had Douglas ever been elected president he would have been our shortest president, he was barely over five feet tall. The rivalry between these two was kind of like the Yankees and Red Sox with the Yankees always coming out on top until recent years. Lincoln is still our tallest president at 6'4" so the contrast on the speaking platform at the Lincoln-Douglas debates was really something to see.

The only other actor to recreate his stage role besides Massey was Howard DaSilva who played Jack Armstrong. Not the All American hero, but the leader of the local gang of roughnecks who Lincoln beat in a wrestling match and who becomes his lifelong friend. All part of the Lincoln legend carefully preserved by Sandburg and Sherwood. It was one of DaSilva's earliest screen roles.

Raymond Massey got an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor in 1940 and he was up against a strong field that included Henry Fonda for The Grapes of Wrath, Charles Chaplin for The Great Dictator, and Laurence Olivier in Rebecca. The winner however was a long-shot, James Stewart for The Philadelphia Story. There was a lot of sentiment that year that Stewart should have received the Oscar the year before for Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. So the good Academy voters made up for it this year. It goes that way with Oscar every so often.

Abe Lincoln in Illinois still holds up very well although today's historical Lincoln specialists might have different interpretations placed on some of the events you see.


12 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Great film, but..... TeddingtonBear
Official Warner Bros. DVD can now be ordered simonhowson
How was the first half? kag2-1
When was this film renamed? jcrodden
Discuss Abe Lincoln in Illinois (1940) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page