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Spielberg's "Lincoln" - Page 2

post #31 of 86
Kirk Lazarus - Tropical Thunder
post #32 of 86
A true Method actor will not break character on set. They'll stay in character between takes, at the Craft Services table, etc. As mentioned, this is pretty rare these days.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oink View Post

Maybe somebody here can share some of the old horror stories of method acting of yesteryear?
I'll bet Josh has a lot of stuff in that movie encyclopedia in his head he could share...

I can't think of any famous horror stories off the top of my head (though I'm sure some exist). In order to stay in character, most of these Method actors retreat to their trailers and isolate themselves as much as possible when they're not filming.
post #33 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by General Kenobi View Post

Hasn't Depp been reported to do the same thing? I could have sworn I'd read or watched something from Hunter Thompson commenting on how Depp followed him around for months studying and watching, learning his mannerisms, speech style, tone, hand gestures, etc. for Fear and Loathing. Essentially transforming into that person for the duration of the film.

The difference with Depp, is that he is still "normal" while shooting a film. They filmed 'Public Enemies' not far from where I live, and he was extremely gracious to those around him, and signed autographs for fans into the wee hours.

I know that playing Dillinger may not compare to Lincoln, but he was the same during filming of 'From Hell', in Prague. He frequented the Blue Light bar there on his off time. It is very small, and gets very crowded (I was there last fall). Not the place to go, to be by yourself.
post #34 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by adpayne View Post

The difference with Depp, is that he is still "normal" while shooting a film.

I don't think Johnny Depp is ever "normal."
post #35 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Z View Post

I can't think of any famous horror stories off the top of my head (though I'm sure some exist).

The onset of Alzheimers????
post #36 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Z View Post

I can't think of any famous horror stories off the top of my head (though I'm sure some exist).

1:44

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JthyQ2z0acs
post #37 of 86
post #38 of 86
While hardly a "horror story', on Claire Bloom's part of the commentary on the DVD for The Haunting, she said that she and Russ Tamblyn (and I think Richard Johnson as well) liked to cut up and play jokes on each other and go to pubs after filming, but that Julie Harris was perpetually in character and would just go hide in her trailer when she was not before the camera.

And in East of Eden James Dean had to take a long time to get mad enough at the ice blocks to pull them down the chute near the beginning of the film. He and Raymond Massey did not get along, which Elia Kazan encouraged (a trait for which he was notorious).

And there is the famous story about one of the method actors having to ask what his motivation was for opening a door, and Spencer Tracy saying something to the effect of "you open the >blank< door because that's how you get in the >blank< room".
post #39 of 86
Thread Starter 
Updated first post to include new trailer:)
post #40 of 86
I came for Steven Spielberg or so. biggrin.gif
post #41 of 86
Just got back from seeing Spielberg's Lincoln and loved it. I should explain that Civil War history in general and Lincoln the man in particular have been nearly life long passions. I think most viewers will like it but for those of us who are fascinated by that period it is not to be missed. For example there is a scene between Lincoln and his wife Mary in which Lincoln confesses that he has, over Mary's strenuous objections, given permission for their oldest son, Robert, to join the army. There was a terrible row and I felt profoundly sorry for both of them. It really moved me. I'll be interested to learn the thoughts about that scene of those of you whose interest in Lincoln and the War is less profound than mine.

The breadth and depth of the supporting cast was incredible. Tommy Lee Jones was out of this world as the Radical Republican House member, Thaddeus Stevens. The talented Jones has never, ever, been better. Sally Field was perfect as little, round Mary Lincoln. Although Field is 11 years older than Daniel Day-Lewis, who played Lincoln, she looked the Civil War era Mary Lincoln to the life. She was helped by Day-Lewis's War weary, stooped, and shambling Lincoln. Lincoln had already lost a lot because of the War before he was struck by the bullet in Ford's Theater that took his life.

Finally, the historically accurate uses and abuses of political power bought to get the House to submit the 13th Amendment to the people for ratification portrayed in the film show that politics wasn't a bit cleaner then than it is now. Great stuff! I gave the film 10 Stars out of 10 but consider the source, too.
post #42 of 86
Thanks for the review gwsat will be looking out for it on blu.
post #43 of 86
Nice review, gwsat.

I'll wait for the BD.wink.gif
post #44 of 86
Thread Starter 
Can't wait to check this out, thanks for the review!
post #45 of 86
Just saw this last weekend and also enjoyed it. Seemed like a very realistic portrayal of Lincoln to me. I found the only dissapointment was they did not show the Washingtion monument in the actual film even though I clearly remember seeing it in one of the previews. Makes me wonder why the film makers would do that.

And they did use fish eye but atleast no shaky cam. Thank god for that.
post #46 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by sdurani View Post


Indeed, a friend doing make up effects (scars, burns, cuts) on this film was given 2 conditions for working on the set: 1) never make eye contact with Daniel Day Lewis, and 2) if you ever have to talk to him, address him as Mr. President or Mr. Lincoln or President Lincoln.

It's a BIZZARE way to make a movie, which is generally difficult at best. It was not unlike a stage performance around which the filmmakers designed coverage that would capture the performance as film-like as possible. My peers on this show did it out of loyalty to the director and DP, otherwise they would have stayed as far away as possible. It had to be miserable in many ways. The only way I'd take a gig with that kind of set is out of loyalty or starvation. I've been very lucky to have great working relationships with actors, and even some long friendships. At its best, there is a mutual bond of trust that is quietly developed between the actors (especially the principles) and the operator(s). At its worst, that bond is denied...as in this case, albiet for no malice. I can't imagine not having that bond. My hat is off to Mitch Dubin and the rest of the camera guys.

Interesting that they chose to shoot film.
post #47 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cam Man View Post

Interesting that they chose to shoot film.
The day Spielberg directs a Live Action movie shot digital we will know that film is truly dead as medium. cool.gif
War Horse was the first movie he cut digital (Avid), but he doesn't feel too good about it and might slip back to flat-bed editing on a simpler movie.
He also has the foresight to make a 4K master of his recent movies.
Quote:
Steven Spielberg on Digital Editing
Thursday, October 27, 2011
Steven Awalt: You went back to editing [War Horse] on the KEM and the [Moviola] after Tintin, right?

Steven Spielberg: No, I've actually converted 100 percent now to the Avid.

Awalt: How are you feeling?

Spielberg: Not good about it, but you know, my editor [Michael Kahn] has become very accustomed to the Avid on other films he's worked on between my own analog insistence, and Mike pretty much talked me into cutting Lincoln on the Avid. I'm hoping that I'll go back after that on a movie that might be a little bit simpler and cut that on film. We kept all the KEMS and the Moviolas, and we kept all the white gloves, we kept the scotch tape. We've still got a couple million feet of sound leader, sound film standing by for us. But after Tintin (which was 100 percent digital because there is no film intermediate at any stage of the process), War Horse was shot on film, but we cut it on the Avid. We basically cut it on the Avid because we were doing Tintin at the same time and I couldn't have an analog and a digital room in the same space. It was impossible to go from analog to digital in two rooms. And we'd have had to bring two more assistants over for the film that know how to box trims and hang trims and catalog. It turned out that was the reason I did War Horse on the Avid. I got used to it; it's not my favorite medium for putting film together. It's too fast for me.

Awalt: Anything positive about the process for you?

Spielberg: The same thing I dislike about it is what I like about it, it's fast. [laughs]

Awalt: You've always cut fast anyway though.

Spielberg: We cut fast, but it takes a while to splice and to tape, and I get a chance to walk around and think. The whole new technology is sort of making me think a little quicker on my feet. I think much faster on my feet as a director on a film set than I do in an editing room, because I really prefer the downtime when Mike is out what we can "schneiding," which is cutting the stuff together that we already have agreed on the order of scenes and takes and choices, that I'll just take a walk around the lot. I'll walk around the lot for 45 minutes, I'll get a call, he'll say, "Come back, I'm ready to show you something," But I can think about the movie. It's very zen, and it's worked for me my entire career. And now I never take those walks, because for War Horse, there wasn't any time to take those walks, because the changes are made so quickly."
post #48 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cam Man View Post

It's a BIZZARE
Interesting that they chose to shoot film.

We're all ears wink.gif
post #49 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by oink View Post

I believe "method" acting was much more common during Hollywood's Golden Years than it is today.

It depends on which form you're talking about. While Stanislavski developed it in Russia in the late 19th century, and there were adherents in the 30s-50s in the States, such as Uta Hagen, Lee Strasberg, and Stella Adler, most of what we consider "method actors" came during the "New Hollywood" era of the 60s and 70s, and even into the blockbuster era. Guys like Keitel, Pacino, and De Niro still work in at least one form or another.

It's still taught today, but guys like Sanford Meisner and Robert Lewis started changing up the approaches, so now there are a bazillion different ways to go about method acting. Plenty of acting schools still teach these newer method forms, like the Stella Adler and Ruskin schools, and you still have quite a few proponents of it, though "classical actors" never really went away, either. Skilled directors know how to work with all types, and how to mesh different actors from different schools of thought to make it work right, though it can be a challenge.

One of my profs in grad school related about when he worked on The Border with Harvey Keitel and Jack Nicholson. Keitel is method, Nicholson is distinctly not method. One day they were getting ready to shoot a scene, and director Tony Richardson was spending a considerable amount of time going over with Keitel why his character was wearing a hat, and all the backstory about why he wore this hat. Nicholson, who was getting tired of it, walked over, grabbed the hat, put it on Keitel's head and said, 'You wear it because you like it!" And then they shot the scene.

I've worked in the theatre with some method actors (though not as a director or actor myself.) Sometimes it can be madding, but sometimes it's pretty fun to watch, and some of them can do some amazing things. But I've also seen amazing things from more classically trained actors as well.
post #50 of 86
I finally got around to seeing this film last night. Outstanding acting jobs by all. Many emotionally involving scenes. My respect for Spielberg as a director has been at least partially restored. Masterful job.

I haven't seen any of the other movies nominated with the exception of Les Miserables. That said, I would be surprised if Daniel Day Lewis and Tommy Lee Jones don't get Oscars for their performances. Sally Field was a complete and wonderful surprise in this but will likely lose out to Anne Hathaway.

I saw Lincoln at an evening showing and was afraid that I would be too tired to enjoy a 2 hour and 30 minute movie that was basically dialog driven. After a slow start I got pulled right into the story and the time went quickly. If you are not planning on seeing this in a theater be sure to catch it on Blu-ray.
post #51 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.G View Post

I finally got around to seeing this film last night. Outstanding acting jobs by all. Many emotionally involving scenes. My respect for Spielberg as a director has been at least partially restored. Masterful job.

I haven't seen any of the other movies nominated with the exception of Les Miserables. That said, I would be surprised if Daniel Day Lewis and Tommy Lee Jones don't get Oscars for their performances. Sally Field was a complete and wonderful surprise in this but will likely lose out to Anne Hathaway.

I saw Lincoln at an evening showing and was afraid that I would be too tired to enjoy a 2 hour and 30 minute movie that was basically dialog driven. After a slow start I got pulled right into the story and the time went quickly. If you are not planning on seeing this in a theater be sure to catch it on Blu-ray.

Daniel Day-Lewis is my choice for the Best Actor Oscar, too. I agree that Sally Field, despite her wonderful performance as Mary Todd Lincoln, will likely lose out to Anne Hathaway, for Hathaway's ethereally beautiful and moving performance in Les Miserables as the doomed Fantine. Her performance of I dreamed a Dream was as moving as anything I have seen on film. Frankly, I really, really hope that Hathaway wins. I loved Lincoln too, though and have put in a request with Amazon for them to notify me when the Lincoln BD becomes available to order. I will order it on Day One.
post #52 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by gwsat View Post

Daniel Day-Lewis is my choice for the Best Actor Oscar, too. I agree that Sally Field, despite her wonderful performance as Mary Todd Lincoln, will likely lose out to Anne Hathaway, for Hathaway's ethereally beautiful and moving performance in Les Miserables as the doomed Fantine. Her performance of I dreamed a Dream was as moving as anything I have seen on film. Frankly, I really, really hope that Hathaway wins. I loved Lincoln too, though and have put in a request with Amazon for them to notify me when the Lincoln BD becomes available to order. I will order it on Day One.


hey buddy, why don't you go to scott's "its the award season again" thread and post your oscar picks. you've probably seen all or most of the nominated films so it
would be interesting to see your thoughts.
post #53 of 86
Well, this part is no joke. I'm talking History and not Politics, OK? If you want to deny that what I am about to tell you is true, then YOU are trying to rewrite history for the sake of present day politics.

I saw this movie Lincoln a couple of weeks ago. I was highly amused at what Spielberg LEFT OUT. Perhaps he did not want to explain the historical facts, or perhaps he was deliberately vague upon this point for reasons of political correctness.

Lincoln is of course all about the politics of passing the 13th Amendment to the US Constitution, which abolished slavery. This was necessary because Abraham Lincoln's earlier Emancipation Proclamation was based upon powers derived from the country's wartime status.

Not mentioned is the historical fact that Abraham Lincoln founded the (then radically left wing) Republican Party on a platform of abolishing slavery. Or that the three prior attempts to legislate the end of slavery before the American Civil War were also introduced by those dratted radical troublemaking Republicans. All three prior attempts failed because the Southern Democrats (the Dixiecrats) represented the extreme right wing of American politics. However it was obvious that each attempt came closer to success, and this fired Secessionist movements in the American South.

Nor does Speilberg mention that the opposition to Abolitionism was principally but not exclusively from the solidly right wing Democratic South, and that every villanous figure shown in Congress throughout the film represents a Democratic politician from one state or another. Understand that Andrew Jackson founded the Democratic Party before the War, with the basic planks of the supremacy of states rights, support for slavery, and the (then new) idea of forcibly relocating Native Americans to reservations on land that no European immigrant or (white) American wanted.

It was necessary to pass the 13th Amendment before the War was won and the solidly Democratic South was forced to rejoin the USA, or it never would have passed in Congress, at least for approximately another century. Even so, there was an element of anti-Civil-Rights politics that remained in the South throughout the Reconstruction, right up until the 1960s, when the Kennedys purged the party of the Dixiecrats.

Which is why we now have such an extreme Republican/Democrat division along ideological lines. Prior to the Kennedy purge of the Dixiecrats, the range of Conservative/Liberal ideology was greater within each major party than between the two parties. American politics is now as broken as it has ever been as a result of this action.

I lived this recent history, growing up in North Carolina, Louisiana, and Virginia during the 1950's and 1960's. Nowadays people refuse to believe that good solid Democrats would wear white sheets and burn crosses on the lawns of other people. However, these things (and lots worse that I will not mention) did in fact happen.
Edited by Gary McCoy - 2/11/13 at 6:00pm
post #54 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary McCoy View Post

Well, this part is no joke. I'm talking History and not Politics, OK? If you want to deny that what I am about to tell you is true, then YOU are trying to rewrite history for the sake of present day politics.

I saw this movie Lincoln a couple of weeks ago. I was highly amused at what Spielberg LEFT OUT. Perhaps he did not want to explain the historical facts, or perhaps he was deliberately vague upon this point for reasons of political correctness.

Lincoln is of course all about the politics of passing the 13th Amendment to the US Constitution, which abolished slavery. This was necessary because Abraham Lincoln's earlier Emancipation Proclamation was based upon powers derived from the country's wartime status.

Not mentioned is the historical fact that Abraham Lincoln founded the (then radically left wing) Republican Party on a platform of abolishing slavery. Or that the three prior attempts to legislate the end of slavery before the American Civil War were also introduced by those dratted radical troublemaking Republicans. All three prior attempts failed because the Southern Democrats (the Dixiecrats) represented the extreme right wing of American politics. However it was obvious that each attempt came closer to success, and this fired Secessionist movements in the American South.

Nor does Speilberg mention that the opposition to Abolitionism was principally but not exclusively from the solidly right wing Democratic South, and that every villanous figure shown in Congress throughout the film represents a Democratic politician from one state or another. Understand that Andrew Jackson founded the Democratic Party before the War, with the basic planks of the supremacy of states rights, support for slavery, and the (then new) idea of forcibly relocating Native Americans to reservations on land that no European immigrant or (white) American wanted.

It was necessary to pass the 13th Amendment before the War was won and the solidly Democratic South was forced to rejoin the USA, or it never would have passed in Congress, at least for approximately another century. Even so, there was an element of anti-Civil-Rights politics that remained in the South throughout the Reconstruction, right up until the 1960s, when the Kennedys purged the party of the Dixiecrats.

Which is why we now have such an extreme Republican/Democrat division along ideological lines. Prior to the Kennedy purge of the Dixiecrats, the range of Conservative/Liberal ideology was greater within each major party than between the two parties. American politics is now as broken as it has ever been as a result of this action.

I lived this recent history, growing up in North Carolina, Louisiana, and Virginia during the 1950's and 1960's. Nowadays people refuse to believe that good solid Democrats would wear white sheets and burn crosses on the lawns of other people. However, these things (and lots worse that I will not mention) did in fact happen.

I am a southern boy, my forebears were natives of North Carolina and, before that, Virginia going back to 17th Century Jamestown. Until my great grandfather's generation, my family were slave owners. That's not something I am proud of, or ashamed of either, it's just an illustration that the 19th Century was very different from the 21st.

I am a life long student of the Civil War, which study has taught me that the conflict was virtually unavoidable and could only be resolved by the force of arms. More Americans died in that bloody struggle than in any of our wars before or since. Lincoln had to do many things that I am certain he knew he shouldn't be proud of. What Lincoln did understand, though, was that slavery had to end. To this day, I can't say whether Lincoln was more proud that he had led the nation through its most divisive episode and preserved the Union or more ashamed at the appallingly bloody cost of his victory. The bottom line, though, is that the politically savvy and, yes ruthless, Lincoln got the job done. The United States was reunited and became the powerful nation we have been ever since.

Political divisiveness these days, as extreme as some may think it to be, pales to that going on in pre Civil War days. Recall that Representative Preston Brooks, of South Carolina, savagely beat Senator Charles Sumner, an anti-slavery advocate, on the senate floor, after Sumner's inflammatory "Bleeding Kansas" speech. Politics is divisive these days but that divisiveness is nothing compared to the political climate that led to the Civil War. Lincoln led the nation out of that in ways, which, like sausage, may have ended up tasting pretty good, but we wouldn't want to see how it was made.

My conclusion is that I think Spielberg's Lincoln did a good job of showing both the beauty and the ugliness of Lincoln's political machinations without much 21st Century liberal bias.
post #55 of 86
I'm confused....why are we talking "politics?"
post #56 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by oink View Post

I'm confused....why are we talking "politics?"

I guess its hard to talk about a movie like Lincoln, without somehow bringing in historical politics into the mix.

But it always a good idea not to go further, unless we want to unleash the fury of the mods. 😉

Besides we all know that the actual reasons for the war was to disturb the vampire food supply.
post #57 of 86
Because I heard people outside the theater a couple of days ago discussing the movie Lincoln who did not believe that Abe founded the Republican Party or that his main plank was Abolitionism. Then I was even more stunned to find out that the same Yahoos did not even understand that the Democratic Party was founded to oppose Abolitionism, to repress minorities, and to promote the status quo of the "Big Businesses" of that time - which were Southern plantations with hundreds of slaves.

I think I understand it after reading an interview with Kathleen Kennedy, the film's producer. Spielberg deliberately altered the facts of the politics around the 13th Amendment, for the sake of telling a better story. Politicians were invented and votes were altered to clarify the narrative. The entire controversy that arises when you try to explain that the Republicans were attempting to free slaves while the Democrats were stridently opposed, is avoided. I guess even Spielberg felt that he could not explain this in terms understandable to modern American audiences in a mere two and a half hours. He even avoids identifying the party affiliation of several main characters in the film.

It is after all, a Historical Drama rather than a Documentary. He is attempting to convey the essence of History in as entertaining a fashion as possible. Explaining that the entire South was anti-Civil-Rights well into the second half of the 20th Century is rejected by many younger Americans who were exposed to too little History and Civics and Government in public schools. But I still find it stunning that people would reject actual historical fact because it does not easily integrate into their limited knowledge of today's world - when the facts are available and accessable to all.

My abject apologies for the diversion. By all means, let us talk about the film. Daniel Day-Lewis gave the performance of a lifetime IMHO.
post #58 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by MovieSwede View Post

I guess its hard to talk about a movie like Lincoln, without somehow bringing in historical politics into the mix.

But it always a good idea not to go further, unless we want to unleash the fury of the mods. 😉

Besides we all know that the actual reasons for the war was to disturb the vampire food supply.

Heh, you got that one wrong, it was actually Zombies. There was an epic hack of the Emergency Alert System yesterday:
Quote:
GREAT FALLS, MT - A Montana television station's regular programming was interrupted by news of a zombie apocalypse.

The Montana Television Network says hackers broke into the Emergency Alert System of Great Falls affiliate KRTV and its CW station Monday.

KRTV says on its website the hackers broadcast that "dead bodies are rising from their graves" in several Montana counties.

The network says there is no emergency and its engineers are investigating.

http://www.abc15.com/dpp/news/national/zombie-apocalypse-tv-station-hacker-interrupts-programming-to-warn-montana-residents
post #59 of 86
The film, Lincoln, for the most part comes from a book, Team of Rivals. The book is 944 pages and is absolutely wonderful. Yes, the book gets much more into the details and is a non-fiction biography. Myself, having read the book first, I had some disappointment with how the film was rendered. Much was left out but then who is going to go to a 9 hour movie..... And who is going to pay all of these great actors what they deserve to be in that 9 hour movie!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Team_of_rivals
post #60 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobby94928 View Post

The film, Lincoln, for the most part comes from a book, Team of Rivals. The book is 944 pages and is absolutely wonderful. Yes, the book gets much more into the details and is a non-fiction biography. Myself, having read the book first, I had some disappointment with how the film was rendered. Much was left out but then who is going to go to a 9 hour movie..... And who is going to pay all of these great actors what they deserve to be in that 9 hour movie!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Team_of_rivals

Doris Kearns Goodwin is one of my favorite Civl War scholars and may be our greatest chronicler of Lincoln. I thought Team of Rivals was a great book, although her FDR biography, No Ordinary Time, is wonderful too. In my estimation, our greatest Civil War scholar is James M. McPherson, who wrote the magisterial, Battle Cry of Freedom, a work that in my opinion is the finest one volume treatment of the Civill War ever written. McPherson wrote a terrific review of Team of Rivals in The New York Times. Read it, it's very interesting.

I thought Spielberg's Lincoln did an excellent job of showing us what Lincoln accomplished with his nearly occult political instincts and his ability to turn powerful men from rivals into friends and allies. Both Seward and Stanton despised Lincoln before they came to know him but became his friends and allies after they joined his cabinet. With all his faults, Lincoln was a remarkable president, perhaps our greatest. I thought that Spielberg and Daniel Day-Lewis did a fine job of showing us who Abraham Lincoln was.
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