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The New Republic

Spielberg's Lincoln is a Film for our Political Moment

December 31, 1969

Now that films have wormed their way into the timeless halls of art, and now that technology permits audiences to watch when it suits them, the opening of a film means less and less. Still, some cling to the belief (or the hope) that a movie carries a special meaning at the weekend or the day of its opening. There is enough of a newspaper’s transient urgency in a movie to make it a sensation on Friday and a throwaway a week later. I’m not suggesting that Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln (let alone Daniel Day-Lewis’s picture) will burn off that fast. Still, to see it in the immediate aftermath of Barack Obama’s second election is the way to go. You can tell yourself that the resulting surge of emotion is a matter of chance, or

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