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Young Mr. Lincoln

Young Mr. Lincoln(1939)

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  • Henry Fonda as Abe?

    • Carol
    • 7/5/19

    I just can't buy it. Especially after seeing Raymond Massey in Abe Lincoln in Illinoiswhich was absolutely fabulous. He was nominated for the Academy Award and should have won it.

  • young mr. lincoln

    • kevin sellers
    • 10/13/18

    Like all of Ford's good films this one is shot through with melancholy and death; certainly an appropriate tone for this particular subject. The scenes that linger in my mind are all sad ones...Lincoln's graveside speech to Ann Rutledge (Ford was a master of graveside speeches and this is one of his best, right up there with the ones in "She Wore A Yellow Ribbon" and "3 Godfathers"), the scene at the dance where Lincoln takes Mary Todd outside and is overcome with mournful silence at the sight of the Sangamon River, the final scene where Lincoln ascends the hill of history (and legend) to the accompaniment of weeping rain and thunder. Supporting Ford's poetically lugubrious direction is the stark, beautiful cinematography of Bert Glennon and the lovely yet doleful music of Alfred Newman, one of whose themes, that of Ann Rutledge, Ford would re-use in another bleak tale, "Liberty Valance". As far as the acting goes it's pretty much Fonda's show from start to finish and while I never for a moment forgot that I was watching Fonda as Lincoln rather than Lincoln, as in Daniel Day Lewis' better performance in Spielberg's film, there is no denying the skill with which this great actor captures our 16th president's gloom, self deprecatory humor, and ambition. If none of the other actors are as memorable it is more because Lamar Trotti's screenplay does not allow anyone else to grab center stage for even a minute than it is any lack of ability from such solid veterans as Ward Bond, Alice Brady, and Marjorie Weaver. In fact Trotti's screenplay, which allots too much time to the rather dull trial and not enough to the Lincoln/Mary relationship, is the only thing that could be improved on in this otherwise fine film. Give it an A minus.P.S. Considering Milburn Stone played Douglas maybe Dennis Weaver shoulda played Honest Abe.

  • Developing Lincoln's Character

    • Will Fox
    • 10/8/18

    Director John Ford's film-fame from focusing on the frontier fascinates, especially since 1939's "Stagecoach"; "Young Mr. Lincoln" and "Drums Along the Mohawk"; 1946's "My Darling Clementine"; 1948's "Fort Apache"; 1949's "3 Godfathers"; and 1956's "The Searchers." Henry Fonda stars in 4 of Ford's 1st 5 films, and ardently admirer Abe Lincoln with Ford, so they closely collaborated most inspiringly in "Young Mr. Lincoln." Enhanced by Lamar Trotti's screenplay with many pivotal personalities in Abe's arising ambitions; Alfred Newman's appropriate music; Bert Glennon's iconic cinematography, shooting symbolically from low angles to elongate Lincoln's heroic height, so Abe arose as an amiable achiever from a poor, self-educating young lawyer, starting his ascent to US Presidency. Most unexpectedly, this film features a rare, subsuming story, suspensefully solving a murder mystery dramatically! It's a great bonus for believe-able character development, multiplying motivation for viewing and for encouraging people to purposefully learn, while enjoying droll humor. Great supporting cast sustains our interest with some characters cast against type, multiplying unpredictability. So heroic, wagon-train leader may need integrity training. How to overcome vigilantes' lynch-mob mentality, jumping to judgment? How to effectively fight for presumption of innocence, legal due process, and decision making based on verifiable evidence vs. crazed alcoholics' unsubstantiated accusations, etc. This is a time-tested American classic. Many thanks TCM for 5-star feature film, inspiring emulating. Developing Lincoln's character

  • Fine Ford & Fonda Collaboration

    • Judy
    • 3/30/14

    I really enjoy watching Henry Fonda's performance of 'Young Mr. Lincoln'; and I must say it's my favorite Henry Fonda film. Mr. Fonda gives a very unstated performance as the lawyer, Mr. Lincoln which makes it even more believable. I don't know how much of this film is fiction and non-fiction but whenever I think of Abraham Lincoln, I think of this performance. It's a quiet, unpretentious depiction of a time far removed and very inspirational. A must see John Ford film.

  • Young Mr. Lincoln

    • Dashiell B.
    • 12/28/12

    A fine piece of Americana from director Ford. In his first collaboration with the director, Fonda deserved a Best Actor nomination, solid supporting work from Brady in her final role. While not historically accurate, the story of seeing Lincoln grow in the film is fascinating to see. Compassionate & well-assured, this is an excellent film. I give it a 4.5/5.

  • Legends, laughs, and lawyering

    • Oliver Cutshaw
    • 12/11/07

    I have always enjoyed this film. While it is not completely accurate it does capture the spirit of frontier Illinois and the early life of Lincoln very well. Ford has his customary attention to detail. In Ford's films people laugh, dance, play games, and sing as well have adventures and personal dramas. Too many directors make the frontier past look so chaotic and violent that you would think 19th Century America was just one long shootout. Most folks then like most folks today lived in real homes, had jobs, had fun, and dealt with the struggles of life. Some have complained that this pacing makes this movie too leisurely. I beg to differ, that is what sets this movie apart from many historical biographies. It shows Lincoln as a practicing attorney and awkward young man who has his share of ambition beneath is hayseed charm. It is a heartwarming, literate, and fun film with a little good natured reverential myth building thrown in. All in all a fine film.

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