Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures | Release Date: November 9, 2012
7.5
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Generally favorable reviews based on 694 Ratings
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Positive:
528
Mixed:
105
Negative:
61
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7
MarcDoyleNov 20, 2012
The movie is saved by outstanding performances by the supporting cast, including some moments of humor by James Spader. It's a good movie, but not the type of historical account that you'll return to like you would Schindler's List. DDL is,The movie is saved by outstanding performances by the supporting cast, including some moments of humor by James Spader. It's a good movie, but not the type of historical account that you'll return to like you would Schindler's List. DDL is, of course, excellent, but the movie as a whole is essentially solid work. Expand
2 of 4 users found this helpful22
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6
smijatovJan 16, 2013
I do not know what it is, but "Lincoln" just did not quite do it for me. I felt bored throughout, except of the actual voting (possibly because I am not American and know very little of this history, so I was not sure whether it passed orI do not know what it is, but "Lincoln" just did not quite do it for me. I felt bored throughout, except of the actual voting (possibly because I am not American and know very little of this history, so I was not sure whether it passed or not), and kept on dozing off every once in a while. However, Lincoln is not all bad. The cast is superb, and Daniel Day-Lewis, yet again, performs his magic to quite an amazing result. Sally Field is also excellent, as are the supporting actors, led by Spader and Strathairn. Honestly, nothing bad can be said of the cast. The art design and costumes were very well done, as was the cinematography. Technically overall the film looks good. But the issue is with the script. It was just not so engaging. I am a sucker for drama, and a sucker for history (I got a degree in it!) but this was just not very entertainingly done. And mind you, I was thoroughly entertained and enjoyed "The Hours," arguably one of the most depressing films in the past decade. "Lincoln" just does not do it for me. This may be my least favourite Spielberg film, which doesn't mean it's bad. It's a good film, just a bit boring. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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8
BHBarryNov 10, 2012
4 of 6 users found this helpful42
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7
BKMNov 19, 2012
Lincoln will likely appeal to political junkies above all others thanks to its complex and in-depth examination of the painstaking process of passing legislation through a gridlocked congress-which has eerie parallels to our current politicalLincoln will likely appeal to political junkies above all others thanks to its complex and in-depth examination of the painstaking process of passing legislation through a gridlocked congress-which has eerie parallels to our current political climate. But the remainder of viewers will have to be satisfied with an expertly crafted, albeit somewhat creaky, historical drama fueled by a career capping turn from Daniel Day-Lewis and an excellent supporting performance from Tommy Lee Jones. Expand
1 of 2 users found this helpful11
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7
LynDec 30, 2012
"Team of Rivals" was totally engrossing, but somehow this excellent production does not quite capture the complex, conflicted personalities of Lincoln's cohorts. Daniel Day-Lewis is, of course, amazing, but his wit & wisdom here often match"Team of Rivals" was totally engrossing, but somehow this excellent production does not quite capture the complex, conflicted personalities of Lincoln's cohorts. Daniel Day-Lewis is, of course, amazing, but his wit & wisdom here often match the overall preachy tone of the film. (Is DDL ever going to be sexy again, as he was in "The Unbearable Lightness of Being"???) It's fun to catch so many great character actors, though everyone in the movie has kind of a dark and gritty look -- like they just came back from working in an Appalachian coal mine. Expand
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7
DMWillJul 14, 2013
I really don't think anyone really needs any kind of lengthy review of this movie at this point. You know what it's about, or at least you should.

Exceptional acting from the entire cast; a very well written script and great directing.
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8
nauticoNov 17, 2012
Three things struck me about this excellent movie. First, at times I thought I was watching a play, not a flick. Lots of set pieces shot on sound stages. 90% dialogue, 10% action. Secondly, I found that dialogue to be self-consciouslyThree things struck me about this excellent movie. First, at times I thought I was watching a play, not a flick. Lots of set pieces shot on sound stages. 90% dialogue, 10% action. Secondly, I found that dialogue to be self-consciously archaic, sometimes almost Shakespearian in syntax and dialect. (That always makes me wonder how close screenwriters and directors really come to the speech patterns that actually existed back in the day. Since we have no recordings from that era, movie makers must use diaries for clues and examples. That said, I suspect that a) the written word was different from the spoken and b) oratorical speech more different from conversational speech than it is today.)

Thirdly, I thought Speilberg's tone to be a bit didactic, as if he wanted to educate all of us on the mechanics of what it took Abe to get the 13th amendment passed. I found this to be neither good nor bad, just noticeable.
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7 of 8 users found this helpful71
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7
JacobMar 30, 2013
So overall I liked Lincoln and found it interesting. I liked the characters especially Daniel Day Lewis as Lincoln. I found the story somewhat interesting. Having said that a lot of my interest comes from my interest in history. I feel likeSo overall I liked Lincoln and found it interesting. I liked the characters especially Daniel Day Lewis as Lincoln. I found the story somewhat interesting. Having said that a lot of my interest comes from my interest in history. I feel like if you aren’t into history or politics and you really don’t like dialogue heavy movies you really aren’t going ot get into this film. And even I am going to admit that yeah this film did not really hold my interest and that if it weren’t for the critical praise I’d give this film an eh rating. But because of critical praise and my interest in history I’m seeing this movie in a somewhat positive light. If you like history, you like politics, and you like Lincoln your probably like the movie Lincoln ok but just like it ok. Not as overrated as Argo but still kind of overrated. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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9
gunnyartNov 26, 2012
I'd give it a ten except I am not a Lincoln scholar and can't attest to the historical accuracy. I was moved. There hasn't been a movie about a floor fight in congress since Mr. Smith Goes to Washington that is so engaging and compelling.I'd give it a ten except I am not a Lincoln scholar and can't attest to the historical accuracy. I was moved. There hasn't been a movie about a floor fight in congress since Mr. Smith Goes to Washington that is so engaging and compelling. And to top it off everyone knew how this one was going to end before they stepped into the theater and yet it was riveting. Being a political ideologue myself I left the movie feeling ashamed of myself for my personal intransigence. I have always believed political compromise was a sign of weakness. Shelby Foote in Ken Burns "Civil War" makes the statement that the "genius of the American political system was for compromise and it utterly failed." Post election 2012 we are a divided country again but this time we had better learn to compromise for the good of the country and posterity. The sky is not falling and this country has endured far darker days. Expand
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8
JamesLNov 29, 2012
This is the best movie I have seen so far this year. It was entertaining, thoughtful, intellectual, and informative. When I got home, I looked up so many historical issues that the film brought to my attention. I really liked the acting asThis is the best movie I have seen so far this year. It was entertaining, thoughtful, intellectual, and informative. When I got home, I looked up so many historical issues that the film brought to my attention. I really liked the acting as well and the fact that the characters were developed. It would have been so easy to have just resorted to battlefield scenes and blood to make your point. It was well timed as well since so many of the arguments were similar to what I had just heard in our election. Well worth the time and investment! Expand
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9
TVJerryNov 16, 2012
The latest from Spielberg examines the great president's last 4 months, when he struggled to pass the 13th Amendment to end slavery. Tony Kushner ("Angels in America") wrote the screenplay, so it's wordy and eloquent. In the title role,The latest from Spielberg examines the great president's last 4 months, when he struggled to pass the 13th Amendment to end slavery. Tony Kushner ("Angels in America") wrote the screenplay, so it's wordy and eloquent. In the title role, Daniel Day Lewis is simply amazing: creating a character who's not only imposing, but wise and down-to-earth. Sally Field and Tommy Lee Jones also turn in great performances and the entire cast is outstanding. Visually, it's attractive and full of period eloquence. Don't expect this to be a big hit, the seriousness of the subject and constant conversation renders it too inaccessible. It is a solid history lesson in a beautifully made and intelligent package. Expand
5 of 6 users found this helpful51
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8
BikerjamesDec 17, 2012
At first Daniel Day-Lewis's performance came across as a caricature, but after about 15 minutes he won me over completely. A fascinating look at the political process of the time, some of which is still relevant today. Well written andAt first Daniel Day-Lewis's performance came across as a caricature, but after about 15 minutes he won me over completely. A fascinating look at the political process of the time, some of which is still relevant today. Well written and acted with great supporting roles, it never bored me. They use some of the dialect of the time so I didn't always understand what was said, but it isn't hard to follow. Tommy Lee Jones was great as usual. I'm sure there will be lots of buzz at Oscar time. The best Spielberg movie in a long time. Expand
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8
ScrawnyPunkApr 9, 2013
Not exactly a "must-watch" on the level of Schindler's list, but Spielberg manages to bring topical relevance to a historical subject, while making it an engaging view. You can switch the topic and the characters, and it is still a powerfulNot exactly a "must-watch" on the level of Schindler's list, but Spielberg manages to bring topical relevance to a historical subject, while making it an engaging view. You can switch the topic and the characters, and it is still a powerful study of human behavior what kind of man does it take to make a difficult decision, against all practical odds, with little-to-no support, while balancing "right" against "expedience" over the long term? As with all Spielberg movies, it is well-written, well-filmed, and well-acted (with the exception of Sally Fields, whom I found to be over the top in a needless way).

This should be watched by our high school students perhaps this will bring some life to a number of subjects they find boring (e.g. government, politics, parliamentary procedure, compromise, ethics, etc.).
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1
BartNov 23, 2012
In this movie Spielberg does to history what John Wilkes Booth did to Lincoln. Everyone knows how Spielberg voted, but just in case you were wondering, see this film. Slow and plodding at best, and for those who like history, it is a trainIn this movie Spielberg does to history what John Wilkes Booth did to Lincoln. Everyone knows how Spielberg voted, but just in case you were wondering, see this film. Slow and plodding at best, and for those who like history, it is a train wreck. DDL does a great performance, but Spielberg's politically motivated style kills what could have been a good film, and does a great disservice to a great man. While they got DDL spot on casting wise for Lincoln, did the casting people ever look at a picture of Mary Todd Lincoln? Pass this movie by and take the time to read a good book on Lincoln, you will be better off. Saying this movie is based on historical events is like saying Twilight is a documentary. Expand
6 of 16 users found this helpful610
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10
NazguleroMar 15, 2013
There is no way this movie did not win 'Best Picture' at the Academy awards. Truly fascinating It kept me glued to the screen. Congratulations to everyone involved here to make such a masterpiece. Daniel Day Lewis is truly an exceptional actor.
1 of 5 users found this helpful14
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8
podunk411Nov 28, 2012
Reminded me of Sorkin's West Wing, except better written and set in the Lincoln White House. As others have mentioned, this is an intimate look at Lincoln's struggle (indeed, our nations struggle) to get the 13th Amendment passed. DefinitelyReminded me of Sorkin's West Wing, except better written and set in the Lincoln White House. As others have mentioned, this is an intimate look at Lincoln's struggle (indeed, our nations struggle) to get the 13th Amendment passed. Definitely a movie for political junkies and history buffs, with some stellar acting by Daniel Day Lewis and a great (and large!) cast of a supporting actors. I didn't realize how long the film was--truly enjoyed it all the way through. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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4
evancusterNov 24, 2012
I must be in the minority, but I was very disappointed with "Lincoln". I really enjoy history and biography, had read Goodwin's book and had heard almost unanimous praise for the movie. However, I thought the film was tedious, the scriptI must be in the minority, but I was very disappointed with "Lincoln". I really enjoy history and biography, had read Goodwin's book and had heard almost unanimous praise for the movie. However, I thought the film was tedious, the script very stilted, and the acting rather mundane. If this had been a movie without the hype, the well known cast and director, and the subject, I am sure more of the critics would have panned it. I kept looking at my watch and wondering when it was going to show all the great things that had been written about it. A real disappointment. Expand
13 of 25 users found this helpful1312
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7
TokyochuchuOct 14, 2013
Lincoln is a great historical political film from Spielberg. Day-Lewis is absolutely perfect as Lincoln (when is he not perfect?) and the acting throughout is excellent. That said, there are a few niggles. The prime one being that Lincoln'sLincoln is a great historical political film from Spielberg. Day-Lewis is absolutely perfect as Lincoln (when is he not perfect?) and the acting throughout is excellent. That said, there are a few niggles. The prime one being that Lincoln's death is not really gone into. I understand the artistic reasons for going in that direction, but it's still disappointing to be deprived of such a famous and dramatic moment in history. Otherwise, it's a great slice of film-making. Expand
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6
David_HFeb 4, 2013
Fairly useful and brute force historical depiction of the civil war. it shows how even back in the 1800s, the U.S. congress was all about back room deal-making, but at least then they weren't able to make a career out of being in congress.Fairly useful and brute force historical depiction of the civil war. it shows how even back in the 1800s, the U.S. congress was all about back room deal-making, but at least then they weren't able to make a career out of being in congress. Though Steven Spielberg obviously has made some blockbusters, you still have to wonder with a topic like this; how much of the subtleties were created by the "world according to Spielberg"...? Its also a bit depressing to be so blatantly reminded that our country has not learned from history and in fact has gone backwards in terms of degrading and disrespecting the constitution. You can't walk out of Lincoln without feeling that this country used to have such promise and prosperity... and now it is so deeply bogged down with a bloated federal government, thousands of laws and taxes, and power-hungry career politicians that care only about their next election cycle... Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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6
moviemongerNov 25, 2012
Lincoln's kindness, quietness and generosity can translate to film in one and only one way if staying true to the man - in a slow boring way. Daniel Day Lewis did a fantastic job playing a non-flashy, quiet, almost emotionless "character".Lincoln's kindness, quietness and generosity can translate to film in one and only one way if staying true to the man - in a slow boring way. Daniel Day Lewis did a fantastic job playing a non-flashy, quiet, almost emotionless "character". I feel quite a few critics have overstated the "thriller" aspect of this film. I felt none. Day Lewis, Tommy Lee Jones and James Spader were top notch. Good acting kept this movie afloat. Like "Titanic", I knew the ending....but, unlike "Titanic" this film did not have me leaving the theater surprised or energized by what I saw. Expand
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10
papaiNov 24, 2012
Lincoln is one of the greatest biopics of all time.Steven spielberg has done an incredible job.this movie is grand.the cinematography is amazing.All the performances are astonishing.daniel day lewis delivers the performance of a lifetime.
2 of 2 users found this helpful20
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5
jluaJan 27, 2013
In my opinion, the script during the first half of this film reads like an entry in Wikipedia. And the second half lacks soul. In part, because the -much acclaimed- acting of Daniel Day-Lewis seems to me lacking in spirit; it seemed to meIn my opinion, the script during the first half of this film reads like an entry in Wikipedia. And the second half lacks soul. In part, because the -much acclaimed- acting of Daniel Day-Lewis seems to me lacking in spirit; it seemed to me that he has half asleep and bored. I think that many of the glowing opinions may have more to do with the theme, than with the film. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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8
gfnyNov 16, 2012
If you are looking for action pass this by. The movie is like watching a chess game. Slow thinking, planning and timing
4 of 5 users found this helpful41
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10
LeftyyDec 29, 2012
A joyous bundle of history and excellence. The movie plays out in a slow and slightly reserved fashion, rewarding those who pay close attention to the details of the well-versed dialogue. The acting on all fronts in spectacular, and it notA joyous bundle of history and excellence. The movie plays out in a slow and slightly reserved fashion, rewarding those who pay close attention to the details of the well-versed dialogue. The acting on all fronts in spectacular, and it not only paints a detailed and acute description of one of the most important pieces of American history, but does well in honoring the great United States President and showing you a great depiction of his life and those around him. By the end, you'll feel your own sense of emotional accomplishment and maybe even feel smarter. Overall, a glorious film, and my personal movie of the year. Expand
2 of 3 users found this helpful21
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10
Khunter4382Dec 3, 2012
It's hard not to give this film the highest marks. Daniel Day-Lewis is amazing and so perfect. That's no surprise. What surprised me was the fact that so many other great performers were not overshadowed. Tommy Lee Jones nearly steals theIt's hard not to give this film the highest marks. Daniel Day-Lewis is amazing and so perfect. That's no surprise. What surprised me was the fact that so many other great performers were not overshadowed. Tommy Lee Jones nearly steals the show as Thaddeus Stevens, and Sally Field commands her role as Mary Todd Lincoln. Every character gets plenty of screen-time, all the while we are served up a buffet of the greatest portrayal of a US President in the history of cinema. Expand
2 of 2 users found this helpful20
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10
RedfordstoFeb 1, 2014
Movie making at its finest. Daniel Day-Lewis' performance will be how a generation pictures the character of President Lincoln. What is compelling about this story is that it takes place in a moment in time rather than attempting to cover theMovie making at its finest. Daniel Day-Lewis' performance will be how a generation pictures the character of President Lincoln. What is compelling about this story is that it takes place in a moment in time rather than attempting to cover the entirety of the President's life. Instead, Spielberg captures the spirit of the President in his attempts to having a new constitutional amendment ratified. The script is well written, the acting is inspired, and the cinematography is near perfect. Expand
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3
foundationcitizNov 27, 2012
If you look at many of the good reviews, you will see the problem, in my mind, with this movie. It is a bit too slow, too monotone, and simply too stuffy. There could have been so much more color and life. I think we should have seenIf you look at many of the good reviews, you will see the problem, in my mind, with this movie. It is a bit too slow, too monotone, and simply too stuffy. There could have been so much more color and life. I think we should have seen different perspectives, such as from the angle of a simple working person and from the angle of the south. The movie leaves out Lincoln's great speeches, making only brief references. The movie leaves out the assassination, and what we know about who did it and why. The real death blow to the movie, for me, was the lack of vigor in why and what they were fighting for. After all, huge numbers of americans died. So, for me the movie was a dud. I think a lot of people are caught up in the moment. By the way, the supporting acting was GREAT, and I would give an award to Sally Fields. Expand
8 of 20 users found this helpful812
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9
cboltDec 3, 2012
I thought the movie was good. the performances were good and the look of the film was spot on. It was a little confusing keeping track of who everyone was. I really liked Lewis as Lincoln. I want to see it again and I think I will get moreI thought the movie was good. the performances were good and the look of the film was spot on. It was a little confusing keeping track of who everyone was. I really liked Lewis as Lincoln. I want to see it again and I think I will get more out of it. overall 9/10. Expand
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5
DukeJonFeb 3, 2013
I can understand why the critics might heap accolades upon this film but I have to say I was very disappointed. The film is like an average episode of "The West Wing". A cataclysmic event is happening but you never see it, the whole thing isI can understand why the critics might heap accolades upon this film but I have to say I was very disappointed. The film is like an average episode of "The West Wing". A cataclysmic event is happening but you never see it, the whole thing is like watching a drawn out town hall meeting. Characters are introduced without any explanation as to who they are or their influence on the story. The Civil War is merely "Bad slaveowners versus noble crusaders" when we know it was much more complex than that. You'd think the union army was comprised entirely out of black people. Day-Lewis is a subdued presence in the film though Sally Field puts in a strong performance. Overall the whole film felt like a made for Tv movie. Expand
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6
DQ_SlotkinsDec 19, 2012
When the lights came up after Spielberg's Lincoln the packed audience began exiting in an overly courteous and orderly manner. It was eerie. It felt like we were playing a formally dressed audience leaving an opera house after a beautifulWhen the lights came up after Spielberg's Lincoln the packed audience began exiting in an overly courteous and orderly manner. It was eerie. It felt like we were playing a formally dressed audience leaving an opera house after a beautiful ceremony. But it wasn't until I was walking up to my car that I remembered we had come for a movie. I remembered being excited about the movie. I remember 30 minutes of horrendous previews. I remember the opening credits and the low murmurings of the Chicago Symphony's brass section improvising Aaron Copland riffs. I remember Abraham Lincoln telling me to relax ... relax ... count backwards from ten ... then the feeling that I'm floating somewhere above the mid 19th Century. James Spader floats by eating crabs, and then David Strathairn in a Chinese robe. In the parking lot I have a faint feeling that I had just enjoyed myself. I think I ate a piece of hard candy Expand
1 of 2 users found this helpful11
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