Since the day I heard that my man crush Daniel Day-Lewis would be playing the part of Abraham Lincoln under Spielberg’s direction, I have been waiting with baited breath to witness the result.
The first Daniel Day-Lewis movie I fell in love with was "My Left Foot.” Day-Lewis played the part of Christy Brown, an Irish artist who was crippled by cerebral palsy and learned how to paint with only the toes of one foot. The intensity of his acting is what floors me every time. Not only does he stay in complete character throughout the entire movie, but he remained in character the entire time that the cast rehearsed the script and shot the movie. He'd go out to restaurants in Ireland in a wheelchair as Christy Brown. Now that's dedication.
My all-time favorite Day-Lewis role is in “There Will Be Blood.” In this film, Day-Lewis plays an independent oilman named Daniel Plainview. He's creepy, intense, a little crazy and completely captivating. Day-Lewis’ ability to transform himself into any character he portrays amazes me. In Lincoln, he completely captures every nuance of the president’s physique and voice as we imagine it was.
Okay, that’s enough gushing. Now it’s time to pretend to be a movie critic!
Despite my admittedly biased stance, I tried to watch “Lincoln” through the most objective eyes possible. As was no surprise with Spielberg at the helm, the cinematography, historical accuracy, and overall feel of the movie as a whole were all superb. But the real stars of this movie were Tony Kushner (Munich), who wrote the screenplay, and the actors and actresses who brought his writing to life. “Lincoln” boasts such film giants as Sally Field, Tommy Lee Jones, Daniel Day-Lewis and Hal Holbrook who all exceed expectations with their performances.
I remember watching the first teaser trailer and knowing that Jones was somehow going to steal the show. He certainly did. I will be playing a few of his scenes on repeat as soon as I can get my hands on a copy. He just has that old man anger that you can't get until you're... well... an old man.
There was also a particular scene between Day-Lewis and Field that is one of the most heart-wrenching interactions I've seen in film. It's the kind of heart wrenching where you're crying and smiling at the same time because of the brilliance and power of the performers.
With all of this said, here are my unbiased, extremely well-thought-out Oscar predictions for the upcoming Awards: