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As the Civil War continues to rage, America's president struggles with continuing carnage on the battlefield as he fights with many inside his own cabinet on the decision to emancipate the slaves.

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Won 2 Oscars. Another 107 wins & 235 nominations. See more awards »

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Storyline

In 1865, as the American Civil War winds inexorably toward conclusion, U.S. president Abraham Lincoln endeavors to achieve passage of the landmark constitutional amendment which will forever ban slavery from the United States. However, his task is a race against time, for peace may come at any time, and if it comes before the amendment is passed, the returning southern states will stop it before it can become law. Lincoln must, by almost any means possible, obtain enough votes from a recalcitrant Congress before peace arrives and it is too late. Yet the president is torn, as an early peace would save thousands of lives. As the nation confronts its conscience over the freedom of its entire population, Lincoln faces his own crisis of conscience -- end slavery or end the war. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for an intense scene of war violence, some images of carnage and brief strong language | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

16 November 2012 (USA)  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$65,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$944,308 (USA) (9 November 2012)

Gross:

$182,204,440 (USA) (19 April 2013)
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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Toward the end of the film, Thaddeus Stevens and his black housekeeper Lydia Hamilton Smith are portrayed as romantic partners. Although there is no officially documented evidence in real life that the two had anything more than an employer/employee relationship, the two were the object of much speculation and rumor during and after their many decades of cohabitation. Some unusual aspects of their living arrangements that contributed to the contemporary rumor that they were romantically involved included the facts that she moved from separate servants' quarters behind the house into Stevens's main house; she frequently served as the hostess for events held at his house; and several of his family members referred to her in terms usually reserved for spouses in their correspondence. Stevens and Smith were also depicted as lovers in the 1915 silent film The Birth of a Nation (1915), although contrary to this film's reasons for inclusion of a romantic relationship between them, that movie's director, D.W. Griffith, used their relationship as racist propaganda and as supposed "proof" of the North's degeneracy. See more »

Goofs

When General Grant's staff emerges from Appomattox Courthouse on 9 April 1865, Ely Parker is behind Grant and stands with his hands crossed in front of him. In the next shot, Grant starts descending the stairs to greet Robert Edward Lee, and Parker emerges from inside the courthouse crossing his hands. See more »

Quotes

William Seward: Gentleman, you have a visitor.
W.N. Bilbo: [checking his friend cards] Oh my God, goddamn...
W.N. Bilbo: [President Lincoln walks in] I'll be fucked.
Abraham Lincoln: I wouldn't bet against it, Mr...?
W.N. Bilbo: W.N.Bilbo.
Abraham Lincoln: Yeah, Mr. Bilbo. Gentlemen...
Robert Latham: Sir.
W.N. Bilbo: Why are you here? No offense, but Mr. Seward's banished the very mention of your name, he won't even let us use fifty-cent pieces 'cause they got your face on 'em.
Abraham Lincoln: The Secretary of State here tells me that, uh... you got eleven Democrats in the bag. That's encouraging.
Richard Schell: Oh, you've got no cause ...
[...]
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Crazy Credits

No opening credits except for the main title. See more »

Connections

Featured in The 85th Annual Academy Awards (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Battle Cry of Freedom
Music by George Frederick Root
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
I walked out of the theater wanting to go back in and see it again.
30 October 2012 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

It's seldom that I leave a movie knowing that I absolutely will go back to a theater to see that movie again rather than wait for distribution. As I walked out, I absolutely knew that I would be back. There are so many amazing actors in this movie that I need to go back to fully appreciate the story.

In my estimation, Spielberg's Lincoln will become the definitive movie on Abraham Lincoln. Daniel Day Lewis absolutely disappeared into this character and out gallumped Honest Abe - country lawyer, gifted orator and a man born more fully suited to the desperate needs of a nation than possibly any other man in history. This movie is not the shiny myth, but a portrait of an amazing man who inspired, cajoled and even bribed the Representatives of the People into representing ALL of the people.

If you go, and I hope that you do, go with ears ready to hear voices speaking out to us from our violent past, telling us that we can be better than we are, that some things should be done because they must be done and that we can sometimes accomplish the impossible.


256 of 436 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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