Operation Market Garden, September 1944: The Allies attempt to capture several strategically important bridges in the Netherlands in the hope of breaking the German lines. However, mismanagement and poor planning result in its failure.
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 <email@example.com>
Sam Elliott was so in character on set, he would return salutes from reenactors and address uniformed actors by rank. See more »
When Reynold first appears, 3 men are riding with him. When he pulls up at the seminary, 6 men are with him. See more »
Brigadier General Lewis A. Armistead:
The last time I saw Winn he played that song. That very song. Back in California, we were all together for the last time. Before we broke up. Spring of '61. Almyra Hancock. You remember Almyra, Hancock's wife? Beautiful woman. Most perfect woman I ever saw. They were a beautiful couple. Beautiful. Garnett was with me that night. A lot of fellows from the old outfit. People standing around singing in the blue uniform. We were leaving the next day. Some going north, some going south. Splitting up...
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A VHS Collectors Edition was realeased and contained a copy of the extended edition of the movie with extra footage, a copy of the soundtrack, a map, photos of the Generals Lee, Longstreet, Buford and Colonel Chamberlain, a Minie bullet and book featuring the artwork of Mort Kunstler. See more »
With a few notable exceptions Schindler's List, Braveheart, Saving Private Ryan and Glory, history based movies usually die quick and quiet in the movie theater (The Messenger, Ride with the Devil, Cobb) History flicks cost a bundle to make with the costumes and the challenge of finding a place to shoot that's nowhere near highways, bridges, and cities, and they don't always appeal to mass audiences.
So it's not that often that really good historical film comes around. As a result, it's good not to be too fussy when one does. Both Gettysburg and the Killer Angels, the book it was based on, were stuffed with historical inaccuracies, the grossest of all being the presence of the 20th Maine regiment anywhere near Pickett's charge (this happens in both the movie and the book).
For all the lengthy soliloquies, historical misses, whitewashed violence, and the fact that only about 30% of the battle of Gettysburg is shown on film, Gettysburg remains as the best effort to capture the sprawling battle of July 1863 on film. Where the movie lacks in realism, it makes up for it's dialogue, and in the scope of the battle scenes, which are on a scale so grand, that the bloodless body count and the inaccurate tactics can be forgiven. The sheer numbers of soldiers taking part in Pickett's charge was breathtaking. Kudos to the reenactors.
Martin Sheen and Tom Beringer were they're usual excellent selves as Lee and Longstreet and for me, their ongoing debate of the strategy of Gettysburg helped make the movie. Other highlights include the disenchantment of Union soldiers at this stage of the Civil War, and the personal trauma Richard Jordan's Lewis Armistead felt at having to fight his friend Winfield Hancock not only in the same war, but in the same sector of the same battle of that war.
Much of Gettysburg has to be viewed with a grain of salt, but until a Stephen Speilberg or other directing genius with a knack for war footage comes along, it's one of the best we have. And it's pretty good.
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