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D.W. Griffith Presents Abraham Lincoln


List Price: $17.98
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D.W. Griffith Presents Abraham Lincoln + Young Mr. Lincoln: The (The Criterion Collection)
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Product Details

  • Actors: Walter Houston, Una Merkel, William L. Thorne, Lucille Laverne, Helen Freeman
  • Directors: D. W. Griffith
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, DTS Surround Sound, NTSC
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Miracle Pictures
  • DVD Release Date: May 15, 2002
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0001NNLT8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #410,576 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Directed by D.W. Griffith, this Lincoln effort was one of the great talking films of the post-silent film era. These brief vignettes about Lincoln's early life includes his birth, early jobs, his affair with Ann Rutledge, his courtship of Mary Todd and the Lincoln/Douglas debates. His presidency and the Civil War are covered in more detail, and the film concludes with the assasination. Walter Huston stars as the beloved President.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Barbara Underwood on March 14, 2006
Verified Purchase
Having enjoyed director/filmmaker D.W. Griffith's work from early stages of filmmaking through the 1920's silent era, I was curious to see Griffith's first `talkie', and it lived up to my expectations. A good script and a talented cast combined with Griffith's experience made "Abraham Lincoln" a highly respected film of the early sound era of the 1930s - and no doubt helped Walter Houston's career considerably, as his portrayal of Lincoln in this film is very impressive. In fact, I personally thought Houston's is the best portrayal of Lincoln I have seen so far, and I found the other characters, settings and even dialogues to be quite realistic and well done also. But this is a 1930 film and shouldn't be compared to modern films and today's standards (just as Griffith's work overall can't rightly be compared to more contemporary directors and filmmakers) so some familiarity with 1930s films would go a long way to help appreciate "Abraham Lincoln". By today's standards this film might seem dull and slow-moving; furthermore, the sound on this particular DVD is rather crackly, as many early sound films are, but after a few minutes, as I got into the story, I forgot about the noise and thoroughly enjoyed the film. Rather than a melodrama of sorts, this rendition of Lincoln's life is almost like a documentary in that it shows the highlights and well-known aspects of Lincoln's life and career in a very factual manner. Nevertheless, I recognized some of Griffith's trademarks in some scenes which emphasize Lincoln's qualities and some other dramatic punctuation and highlights, especially in the final scenes.Read more ›
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Richard J. Oravitz on December 10, 2008
This dvd produced by Miracle Productions offers a pretty good version of this "old chestnut" concerning the life , career & death of Abraham Lincoln. The image is quite clear & the audio acceptable. This is a GREAT buy if you can pick one up at a local SAV-A-LOT or someplace similar (like I did) for a buck. The asking price of $17.98 is a bit steep for this NO-FRILLS release.
Griffith did OK by this film but his style & method of film making was already being considered "old fashioned" even for the early sound era. And Griffith himself was easily a much more assured director in the silent era...just compare the assassination of Lincoln in this soundie to the superior version of the same incident in THE BIRTH OF A NATION. The tension, the dramatic...all gone. It really goes to show how the far the MASTER had fallen, or in all fairness, had been left behind.
Now mind you, I'm not putting down this film or Griffith. I truly believe that this is an important film & needs to be seen...by YOU. And the version here presented by Miracle is quite acceptable, but you needn't pay the price when it can be had from Amazon dealers for a couple bucks. Please buy this classic & enjoy this slice of Americana, it's well worth the investment and a "keeper" to your dvd library.
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By vivian on March 28, 2013
Verified Purchase
Resulta curioso ver a un Abraham Lincoln joven y fornido, y emocional. Esta es la primera película sonora de Griffith, el fundamento de todo el cine realista estadounidense
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By ramesess on January 20, 2013
Verified Purchase
I like Civil War history, so I was pleased to see the movie "Lincoln" with Daniel Day Lewis came out this Christmas. Of course, I drug the wife with me to see it in the theater. It was pretty good, and I want to see it again. I found this version of Abraham Lincoln on Amazon shortly thereafter, and bought a copy. My wife was piddling around while I watched the DVD, and ended up sitting on the couch with me for most of it. Afterward, she said, "Well, that is just like the other movie we just saw." Of course it isn't the same at all. This movie by D.W. Griffith covers Lincoln's adult life, where the recent release covers only the last months of Lincoln's life. But, for 1930, it is a pretty darn good representation of the Civil War era. I enjoyed this version of Abraham Lincoln, and I think you will too.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful By JOHN GODFREY on July 10, 2010
this one last. I'll give you the fact that this is an 80 year old movie directed by an avowed racist. But Walter Houston's Lincoln was a rather hard drinking brawler. He was lazy & bankrupt. He & Anne Rutledge are courting & she quickly dies. He grieves. Not. soon he is dancing with & propositioning Mary Todd. In this version he is introduced to Mary by his opponent of the future, Stephen Douglas. Soon they are debating (15 years later) & Lincoln is winning the presidency. During the movie the name of Elijah Lovejoy, the noted abolitionist, who was killed in 1837 is invoked (as is Shakespeare), twice. Lincoln is portrayed as a fool. The Civil War is going badly. 600,000 copperheads are massing outside to kill him, (who knew?). Worse, Mary is growing increasingly more irritating. He finds Grant, wins the war & soon is in Ford's theater, giving a combination Gettysburg Address & Inaugural Speech just before he is killed. That's just stupid. Cue the music, The Battle Hymn of the Republic. This was director D.W. Griffith first talkie & the sound is bad, (not his fault),but he was on the decline. Charitably, this movie is a curiosity.
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