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Lincoln and Lee at Antietam: The Cost of Freedom (2006)

Ronald F. Maxwell , Dennis E. Frye , Robert Child  |  NR |  DVD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Ronald F. Maxwell, Dennis E. Frye, Mike Brown (XVIII), Ed Mantell, Cindy Brinkerhof
  • Directors: Robert Child
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Inecom Entertainment Company
  • DVD Release Date: January 31, 2006
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000CA6D9K
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #197,829 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Lincoln and Lee at Antietam: The Cost of Freedom" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

The bloodiest battle ever fought on American soil is thoroughly examined in Lincoln & Lee at Antietam: The Cost of Freedom, a worthy addition to anyone's Civil War video collection. Directed and written by Robert Child and narrated by Ronald F. Maxwell (the director of the definitive Civil War epics Gettysburg and Gods and Generals), this straightforward, no-nonsense documentary emphasizes the tactics, strategies, and historical context of the battle at Antietam, in Sharpsburg, Maryland, on September 17, 1862. Further emphasis is placed on the wartime conditions (political agendas, ready status of armies, etc.) that led to President Abraham Lincoln's orders to defeat Gen. Robert E. Lee's exhausted army at Antietam. Lee and other Confederate strategists had hoped to stage a surprise invasion, but Lee's battle plans fell into the hands of the Union army, and Lincoln's victory--which was essential to his issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation to end slavery--turned Antietam into the pivotal battle of the war. Although Child (who also directed Gettysburg: Three Days of Destiny) uses dramatic readings, maps, and photographs (especially the legendary battleground photos of Matthew Brady) in a manner similar to Ken Burns' epic-length documentary The Civil War, the look and presentation of Lincoln & Lee at Antietam is entirely different, with many sequences involving contemporary Antietam reenactments. Many of the Civil War's most colorful and important figures factor into this detailed 90-minute account, which clearly benefits from impeccable in-depth research. A 25-minute interview with Maxwell reveals the filmmaker's massive 15-year commitment to bringing his epics to the screen, and his feature-length commentary with Child lends another layer of detailed information to this authoritative DVD. --Jeff Shannon

Product Description

It's September 17, 1862 and President Abraham Lincoln needs a victory in order to issue the Emancipation Proclamation and end slavery in the South. But Robert E. Lee has other plans - invade the North. When Lee's strategy falls into the hands of the Union Army, the result is the single bloodiest day in American history at the Battle of Antietam in Sharpsburg, Maryland. The Battle of Antietam results in more casualties than the American Revolution, the War of 1812, the Mexican War and the Spanish American War combined. In fact, the bloodiest day of World War II, D-Day, amounts to only one quarter of the casualties suffered at Antietam. Narrated by Ronald F. Maxwell, director of the epic Civil War films "Gettysburg" and "Gods & Generals," and written, produced and directed by Robert Child, "Lincoln and Lee at Antietam - The Cost of Freedom" vividly brings to life the story of America's fight for freedom in a battle that changed the course of the Civil War. Through first person accounts, an original music score from Composers Steve Heitzeg and Nicholas Palmer and scarce Antietam commemorative battle footage from the 125th, 135th and 140th Antietam Reenactments, this film tells the tale of the 14-hour epic Battle of Antietam. Historical insight provided by: - James M. McPherson, Princeton University, Pulitzer Prize winning author of Battle Cry of Freedom" and "Crossroads of Freedom: Antietam" - Allen C. Guelzo, Gettysburg College, America's only repeat winner of the Lincoln Prize; Nominated by President George W. Bush to the National Council of the Humanities - Dennis E. Frye, National Park Service (NPS) Historian at Harpers Ferry, author of "Antietam Revealed" and the Associate Producer of "Gods and Generals" - Patrick Falci, actor/performing historian portrays General Ambrose Hill at Antietam - Paul V. Chiles, National Parks Service (NPS) Historian at Antietam National Battlefield Park - Features Stanley Wernz, President of the Association of Lincoln Presenters, as Abraham Lincoln and Benjamin Black as General Robert E. Lee Special Features: - 25-minute On-Screen Interview with Ronald F. Maxwell - Feature-Length Commentary Track with Writer/Director Robert Child and Narrator Ronald F. Maxwell - Original Music Score from Composers Steve Heitzeg and Nicholas Palmer - Trailers for: "EXPO-Magic of the White City," "Gettysburg and Stories of Valor - CIVIL WAR MINUTES® III," "Johnstown Flood," "Horses of Gettysburg - CIVIL WAR MINUTES® IV," "Winters of War," "Civil War Life - Shot to Pieces," "CIVIL WAR MINUTES® - Confederate"

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
62 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Antietam reason: February 8, 2006
Lincoln and Lee at Antietam covers the entire struggle of the Antietam Campaign. The political concept about why Lincoln needed a Union victory and Lee's need to take the war north were covered as well as the battle. With various interviews featuring historians such as James McPherson, this documentary is very well done. The battle coverage is brief and not entirely descriptive although it includes reenactment scenes from the 125th, 135th and 140th Antietam Reenactments. A majority of the footage and photography is excellent as it shows the beauty of the Maryland landscape around Antietam. Some of the film really points out General McClellan's "slow-to-react" method of dealing with Lee's invasion and how he missed a multiple of opportunities to really whip Lee during this campaign.

Being a reenactor, covering a battle in detail in under two hours is nearly impossible. Naturally I would like to see more. I did enjoy the political views shown on both sides be it Union or Confederate. It showcased the importance of how crucial this conflict was to each party. It presented the facts about what could be gained and lost for both armies and governments that I liked.

For a veteran reenactor or student of the battle of Antietam, a majority of this presentation is fairly basic and might be too standard although McPherson's explanation about why Antietam was politically important for Lincoln is something most people could learn about in this great presentation.
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15 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Get this now July 13, 2007
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is one of the best movie / documentaries i have ever seen on the battle of Sharpsburg. mostly historians are telling the story, But tell it in a very detailed very informative and compelling way. This is a winner.
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14 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent! January 9, 2007
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I bought this for my husband who loves anything Civil War related. I read the reviews and seemed to be well received. It was excellent. We both thought it was very well done. I highly reccomend it!
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well documented, the end was especially touching November 13, 2012
Format:Amazon Instant Video
Hopefully, we never see another Civil War in the USA. To think that 23,000 lives were lost in just one day of fighting is unfathomable.

This film includes re-enactments, original photos, maps and narration about Antiedam and how it was fought. Seeing the re-enactments, helps to bring this war into reality. The film has an ending that will give you a better understanding as to how many lives were lost. (without giving away how) The ending really, really touched me. I'm very fortunate that my ancestors returned from the Civil War.

Anyone who loves US History should take the time to watch this film.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Importance of Remembering Sacrifice May 22, 2013
Format:Amazon Instant Video|Verified Purchase
This is a great documentary on the sacrifice of 23000 Americans. They gave their all for what they believed in. The least we can do is to understand what and why it happened and to remember them.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very informative April 12, 2013
Format:Amazon Instant Video
A great documentary that did a great job showing the political importance of Antietam. It is a bit older and does show its age, and for those of you that have seen Lincoln, you will be disappointed by the actor. But overall it does what it sets out to do, and that is to inform.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lee. February 26, 2013
Format:Amazon Instant Video
Saw this for free with my Amazon Prime membership. Lots of good information. Well worth watching if you enjoy civil war history
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Informative documentary January 6, 2013
By uofokjb
Format:Amazon Instant Video
Overall this is a very informative documentary, it does lag a little bit at times but sticks to the facts and does not try to over dramatize anything.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Historical Documentary
This documentary about this battle is detailed and in depth. Great video to show your children about one of the great battles of the Civil War.
Published 1 month ago by Fran Velez
3.0 out of 5 stars It's Good...Not Great
This is a competent documentary. If you're unfamiliar with the subject matter, this will be more interesting to you. If you're an expert...this doc treads on familiar territory.
Published 1 month ago by Jeffrey Lee Hollis
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth watching
Worth watching, especially if you are visiting the park in the near future. It's always interesting to hear the stories behind the "other non-Gettysburg" battles of the... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Roger (Cincinnati)
5.0 out of 5 stars Antietam Redux
I took a wonderful 4-day tour of Gettysburg last fall for the 150th Anniversary, but spent a half-day at Antietam. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Mimi
5.0 out of 5 stars Showing the depth of Lincoln &Lee.
The documentary seems to deeply show the character of each man in their times. How they adjusted their plans upon receiving updated information, and how they calculated for the... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Charles B. Walsh
5.0 out of 5 stars Civil war
I believe this production should be used in all High School history classes. They give an true understanding of the cost our nation paid to free all people.
Published 2 months ago by Earl H. Culp
5.0 out of 5 stars Prelude to Gods and Generals as well as Gettysburg
If you have the two movies, this is an outstanding explanation as to why both Fredericksburg and Gettysburg happened as a consequence.
Published 2 months ago by Garry McGonigle
5.0 out of 5 stars Tragic Antietam slaughter
Well presented,and objective,shows the unbelievable loss of life on both sides,all because of the barbarism instution of slaverywould visit the site because of movie
Published 3 months ago by David I. Driscoll
4.0 out of 5 stars good documentary
Provided some good insight into the personalities and motives of the actors in this historical event and the relationships between the general officers and the politicians..
Published 3 months ago by Andrew Baker
4.0 out of 5 stars Lots of scholarship, lots of historical photography
Umpteen different historians appear talking about many, many historical battlefield photos of the carnage that will make you reconsider the usefulness of war.
Published 3 months ago by D. Jordy
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