A Great Movie that No One Knows About
July has just passed and as it was the 150th anniversary of The Battle of Gettysburg, I would like to remember the battle by mentioning a great movie that no one seems to know about.
In 1993, Turner Pictures and New Line released a four-hour movie in selected theatres called Gettysburg. Now I saw this movie in the theatre and didn't know much about the battle but after seeing this movie, I became a full-fledged Civil War buff.
But lets talk about this movie. It is, quite simply, one of the greatest movies ever made with towering performances and execution.
The battle is pain-stakingly recreated (all three days) with thousands of Civil War re-enactors on the actual locations in Gettysburg state park.
The movie stars Jeff Bridges, Tom Berenger, Martin Sheen, Richard Jordan, and Stephen Lang (he was the bad guy from Avatar, BTW) and they are superb. Actually they are more than just superb. This movie represents the greatest performances of all these actors. For Richard Jordan, it was his last role as he died not long after filming.
The script of this movie is phenomenal as actors are given almost Shakespearean speeches (Jeff Daniels even quotes Shakespeare and the name of the book which the movie is based off, The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara comes from Hamlet's speech about mankind - "What a piece of work is man").
And I have to say something about the music in this film. Randy Edelman's score is a masterpiece. One of the best of the 90's. There are moments in this movie where it is just cannon-fire, smoke and Randy Edelman's music. Maybe the best musical moment in the film is when Robert E Lee (Martin Sheen) rides through his own troops and the Gettysburg main theme plays. It brings tears to my eyes every time I watch it.
If you have never seen this movie, you have to treat yourself. Block out an afternoon and sit back and learn, watch, and marvel at one of the greatest movies of all time.