Film & Water #104 – Lincoln


Episode 104: LINCOLN

Rob welcomes guest ScottX to discuss 2012's LINCOLN, starring Daniel Day-Lewis and directed by Steven Spielberg.

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24 responses to “Film & Water #104 – Lincoln

  1. Good thing I’m a bit behind in my feed — I’ve had this for a while and never got around to watching it. You’ve now forced my hand, Mr. Kelly! Well played, sir — well played!

    PS – Vote for a future episode if you want to stretch out of your comfort zone… UHF.

  2. I’m ashamed to admit I haven’t seen this movie yet. It’s been on my list, but honestly, the amount of geek-related films constantly coming out is about all I can seem to see with other commitments. It’s a real shame, because as a kid, I loved to read about Lincoln, so young Chris is probably screaming at me to go out and watch this even more now.

    Scott X is always a great guest. Siskoid needs to have him help cover “The Savage Curtain” on Give Me That Star Trek.


    1. Yeah I missed it in the theaters and am a bit ashamed. I try and catch all SS’s movies in the theaters if I can, he’s truly one of the greatest living directors (and one of the greatest of all time), and I feel like the least I can do is see what he puts out.

      And yes Scott X is a great guest! He’ll be back.

    2. Chris,

      Thanks for you kind words. And you should listen to young Chris and find some time to watch this movie!

      As far as talking with Siskoid about the Savage Curtain, or almost anything Star Trek, I would definitely relish the opportunity!!

  3. I know this is a “prestige” movie and Day-Lewis is great in it, but I have to admit I was no fan of Spielberg’s Lincoln. It felt too much like homework along the lines of Spielberg’s recent Bridge of Spies or The Butler by Lee Daniels. And where were all the vampires I heard Lincoln had hunted?

    Does anyone recall the 1979 TV miniseries Backstairs at the White House? It had a roster of character actors as the various presidents (Victor Buono as Taft, Robert Vaughn as Wilson, George Kennedy as Harding, Harry Morgan as Truman, etc). I liked this as a kid and see it’s out on DVD. Thanks for a thoughtful discussion. I can only imagine how Trump will be portrayed 150 years from now.

    1. Wait…Harry Morgan? COL. POTTER PLAYED HARRY TRUMAN? How have I not heard of this before now??

      I can only imagine how Trump will be portrayed 150 years from now. Donald Trump: The Last President

    2. Chuck,

      Thanks for you thoughts on the Lincoln movie. I have other friends who didn’t care for the movie either, all for a variety different of reasons. None thought it was poorly made, it was just not to their tastes or was not consistent with what they wanted to see in a movie about Lincoln. That’s why I love listening to this podcast. I can thoroughly enjoy the discussions Rob and his guests have even if the movie they are discussing is not necessarily on the top of my favorites list.

      Thanks so much for posting about Backstairs at the White House. I had never heard of this before. I don’t know how I missed it. I usually saw all of that type of stuff when I was a kid. I’ll have to check out the dvd.

  4. Thank you for reminding me that I still need to watch this film. For reasons I can’t recall, I was unable to watch this one on the big screen, and have failed to rectify that situation in subsequent years. I’m a fan of Daniel Day-Lewis, and particularly enjoyed watching him in The Last of the Mohicans and The Age of Innocence. I’m quite interested to see his portrayal of Lincoln, especially after hearing your thoughts on this movie.

  5. In giving this episode a quick listen I noticed a “verbal typo” that I made. I heard it and thought, “did I just say what I think I said?”. I listened again and sure enough I knew I had misspoken. And since it was verbal, I can’t even blame it on that damn autocorrect!

    In the section where Rob and I were discussing the House vote, I mentioned the controversy over how the Connecticut representatives actually voted compared to how their votes were represented in the film. I then went on to say (at about 32:15) that the Governor of Kentucky refused copies of the movie offered by Spielberg. I don’t know how Kentucky popped out, but I meant to say the Governor of Connecticut. That was the state I started by mentioning and then finished by mentioning somehow I said the wrong state in the middle.

    Sorry about that guys, I hope I didn’t confuse anyone too greatly!

  6. I haven’t seen Lincoln, as I’m never in a hurry to see a Spielberg film (or late era Spielberg maybe I should say) but I was super-happy to hear ScottX talk about Lincoln again after his excellent appearance on Midnight. Any interest in a Lincoln in Space episode of Gimme That Star Trek? 😉

    1. Anytime you want to talk about Lincoln in Space on Gimme That Star Trek, I’m your man!

      “I gave orders that sent a hundred thousand men to their death at the hands of their brothers. There is no honorable way to kill, no gentle way to destroy.” That line Lincoln delivered in the Savage Curtain always stuck with me.

      By the way, Lincoln also appeared in a Gold Key issue of the Star Trek comic book. I can’t remember what issue off the top of my head, but I have it in my collection at home.

    1. I know that one well! It is from Superboy #85 (December 1960), written by none other than Jerry Siegel.

      Very historically suspect (even aside from the appearance of a time traveling flying boy from Krypton and a bald headed time traveling villain), but loads of silver age fun!

      This past spring, I spoke at a conference focusing on the Lincoln Assassination. My topic was depictions of the assassination in comic books and graphic novels. The story from Superboy #85 was one of the several stories I selected for my talk. In the end of the story, Superboy says that no mere mortal (not even a Superboy) can change fate so it would be no use to even try to go back in time again to change history. Then in a story published shortly afterward, he (as his adult self, Superman) again goes back in time to try to save Lincoln. Ha! That one was published in Superman #146 (July 1961). The story was called “Superman’s Greatest Feats” and was again written by Jerry Siegel.

  7. Just simply awesome podcast. And I agree that a movie is not obliged to present complete historical accuracy. That’s what the historical texts that exist are for. A 2-hour movie is a work of fictional drama that at best presents a theme and does it’s best to dress the era in character performances, costuming, technical aspects and other bric-a-brac. While I do expect to learn things as presented in a such a movie, at the end of the day, go to the library to do your term paper, not the cinema. And I say this as a historian myself.

    1. I’d love to hear a Nixon episode as well as one on Stone’s JFK. I am not always a fan of Oliver Stone’s films but these 2 each have strong casts doing great work. For my money, the best political film of all time is The Manchurian Candidate (and it all is apparently coming true).

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