During the 1864 battle of the Wilderness, three Union soldiers and three Confederate Soldiers get seperated from their units as twilight engulfs the ravaged battlefield. The men wander ... See full summary »
The four and 1/4 hour depiction of the historical and personal events surrounding and including the decisive American civil war battle features thousands of civil war re-enactors marching over the exact ground that the federal army and the army of North Virginia fought on. The defense of the Little Round Top and Pickett's Charge are highlighted in the actual three day battle which is surrounded by the speeches of the commanding officers and the personal reflections of the fighting men. Based upon the novel 'The Killer Angels'. Written by
Keith Loh <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Lee usually wore a plain uniform with three stars on the collar because he disliked the heavily braided uniforms worn by most Confederate generals. The three stars in the Confederate army indicated the rank of Colonel (Lee's rank when he resigned from the US Army). Confederate generals wore wreathed stars on their collars and their rank was indicated by the number of stripes in the braid on their sleeve. Notice that Longstreet and others all have the collar stars (1 large and 2 small) but the other generals have varying numbers of stripes in their braiding. In fact, a couple of the Brigadiers only wear the collar tabs. No one knows why Lee insisted on wearing this uniform with the improper rank. He did occasionally wear the proper uniform; most notably when he surrendered to Grant at Appomattox. See more »
General Kemper mentions to Colonel Freemantle that Longstreet lost all three of his children to scarlet fever. He also say the youngest was ten years old. In reality Longstreet had four children, three of whom died. The youngest was one year old. His oldest son, Garland, was thirteen years old at the time but survived the illness. They died in January 1862. See more »
I've been reading all the other comments pro & con with great interest, and I just have to add my voice to the "pro" side for this ambitious and stirring epic. Gettysburg is indeed one of my "all time top 10" movies. I was especially curious to see it on initial theatrical release because of the casting of Martin Sheen as Lee; were I to cast a civil war movie, the name Martin Sheen would NEVER have entered my mind as an appropriate performer for this make-or-break role. To my astonishment, Sheen was MAGNIFICENT in his portrayal of Lee; in appearance, demeanor, and aura of command, Sheen COMPLETELY sold me. A stunning performance from an unexpected casting choice. I agree that "Gods & Generals" would have benefited from Sheen's re-casting, though Duvall did his best with the more limited part he was given.
Yeah, I agree that the script tended to a lot of bloviation and speechifying by the principals. I do think we need to make allowance for the fact that in this pre-technological 19th century era portrayed, people DID communicate in ways that seem artificial and awkward by our standards. This was a time when oratory, whether in churches, politics, or general discourse, was valued both as communication and entertainment. So even if the dialogue got a bit overblown, I was more than willing to cut the production some slack.
The beards were a problem for me also, especially poor Tom Berenger's. Still, he (like ALL the lead actors) transcended the limitations and delivered what resonated for me as a credible interpretation of the time and situation.
MANY details of the movie can be nit-picked, and of course, those determined to hate "Gettysburg" can always find a reason, rational or not. I was BLOWN AWAY by the quality and passion of this movie from my first theatrical viewing and it was one of the very first DVD's I purchased. After multiple viewings (all 4 hours) I'm still impressed and grateful that Ted Turner had the desire and ambition to tackle such a BIG project that would be sniped at from all corners for eternity. My goodwill extends to the much weaker (but still defensible) "Gods and Generals"; if they go ahead and produce "The Last Full Measure," I promise I'll be first in line at the movie theater AND pre-order the DVD!
10 out of 10!
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