Early Reaction: Steven Spielberg's 'Lincoln' Screens in New York (with Podcast)

Early Reaction: Steven Spielberg's 'Lincoln' Screens in New York (with Podcast)

Oct 08, 2012

By the time Steven Spielberg took the stage at the 2012 New York Film Festival, it wasn't much of a secret that the festival's secret screening this year (a tradition that began last year with Hugo) was Lincoln. One of the year's biggest films played like one of the year's biggest films -- with a standing ovation for Spielberg, an epic line to retrieve checked cell phones and crowds of people unable to move away from the theater due to heated discussions about what they had just watched.

We'll have a full review from our New York Film Festival correspondent David Ehrlich in a few hours, but for now you can listen to 10 minutes of David and I chatting about the movie immediately after walking out of the theater. If our thoughts (and my voice) seem a bit frantic, it's because we were still processing what already seems to be a pretty divisive film.

Some loved it -- I saw lots of "Spielberg's best in years" quotes -- while others found it a little long and boring. There's no doubt both camps were blown away by the performances, especially from leads Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field and Tommy Lee Jones, as well as a bit of a scene-stealing turn from James Spader... and essentially every well-known character actor working today. The script is also wonderful -- packed with a whole range of Spielbergian emotions -- while the film itself is at its best when it's about a man who was forced to turn his back on his own values and family in order to help people live better lives. Spielberg's is a film not about a man who was killed, but about a man who just about killed himself fighting to free a nation.

Listen to our chat below, and stay tuned for plenty more on Lincoln as we approach its November 9 release. 

Follow along on Twitter @ErikDavis and @Moviesdotcom.

 

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Kate Winslet