My inner history nerd was smiling ear to ear; like a fat kid looking at a Smartie, a candy comparable to an M&M. Tuesday, sk and I went to see the movie Lincoln, the latest offering from Steven Spielberg. All I knew going into the movie was that Daniel Day-Lewis portrayed President Abraham Lincoln, Sally Field as his wife and Tommy Lee Jones played a dude with a terrible wig. Well, it wasn’t the wig’s fault. I’m sure it was a perfectly good wig, just absolutely totally wrong on Mr. Jones’ dome. I also heard or read some where that the tick of Mr. Lincoln’s watch in the movie was the actual ticking sound of the original watch owned and used by the President himself.
Here in Canada, the movie is not playing nation-wide. We got lucky. The film wasn’t showing at our regular theatre but happened to be at the one closest to us, just in the opposite direction. It was also a great showing time; 6:55 pm. That was late enough in the evening to get home from work (with a little coaxing), eat dinner and drive the 30 minutes to the movie and early enough for sk to be in bed a little past her bedtime but not enough past that she complained about the lateness.
We were a few minutes early, thank you to all you people who purchase your tickets before hand so when you arrive at the theatre all you have to do is head over to the little kiosk, insert your credit card for verification and poof, the tickets come sliding out. Thanks to all of you, I did not have to stand in line and wait to buy our tickets. So there we were with our tickets in hand, bag of popcorn along with a diet soda and high hopes as we headed toward our destination.
We walked into theatre #4 for Lincoln. I’m not sure what I was expecting from the crowd of onlookers, I don’t think I was expecting anything really. All I saw was a sea of white/graying hair. I was shocked, for two reasons. One, that there was so many people there to see the movie. I had no idea that many people would leave their house on a Tuesday to go watch a movie. The place filled up, almost completely. People were sitting in the very front row, the front row two feet from the screen front row. Two, the obvious age difference between me and the rest of the people in that room. I was half expecting an odor wave of Ben-Gay to hit my nostrils.
The whole movie is centered around one event, the voting on the 13th Amendment to the US Constitution in the House of Representatives. Daniel Day-Lewis does a very good Mr. Lincoln, in my opinion. Sally Field was good, not exceptional but good because I feel she’s familiar with this type of role and didn’t really need to go above or beyond her abilities. Tommy Lee Jones gave a very solid performance. Then, it was almost a who’s who supporting cast: Joseph Gorden-Lovitt, David Strathairn, Hal Holbrook, Jackie Earl Haley among several others. I think my favorite character though was W.N. Bilbo, played by James Spader. Mr. Bilbo was one of three men hired to convince a certain number of minority members to vote in favor of the 13th Amendment, thus breaking with their own party, in order to receive the 2/3rds majority vote needed for acceptance. Mr. Spader starred opposite of William Shatner in one of my all-time favorite television shows, “Boston Legal” so I may have a soft spot in my heart for him but he did provide the comedic relief in what could have been a very dim and dreary movie, visually speaking.
I usually scientifically rate movies on the number of times I look at my watch during the film. However, since I currently do not have a watch (Hint, hint sk, Christmas is fast approaching!) now I must rely on how many times I wanted to look at the time. The movie we watched prior to Lincoln, for example, was Looper, starring Joseph Gorden-Lovitt and Bruce Willis. During that movie, I would have looked at my watch at least twice probably even three times. It was an okay movie. Lincoln, if I had a watch, would have been a quick glance. . .maybe, if anything. So according to my “rating system,” Lincoln is a very good film. I might go as far as to say one of the better films of the year. Best film of the year, possibly. I don’t know of any other movie this year that made my inner history nerd do a little happy dance or one that kept a hundred or more seniors awake well past their bedtimes.