4.8 36
Director: Edward Zwick

Cast: Edward Zwick, Matthew Broderick, Denzel Washington, Morgan Freeman


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Glory is a celebration of a little-known act of mass courage during the Civil War. Simply put, the heroes involved have been ignored by history due to racism. Those heroes were the all-black members of the 54th Regiment of the Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, headed by Col. Robert Gould Shaw (Matthew Broderick), the son of an influential abolitionist (playedSee more details below


Glory is a celebration of a little-known act of mass courage during the Civil War. Simply put, the heroes involved have been ignored by history due to racism. Those heroes were the all-black members of the 54th Regiment of the Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, headed by Col. Robert Gould Shaw (Matthew Broderick), the son of an influential abolitionist (played by an uncredited Jane Alexander). Despite the fact that the Civil War is ostensibly being fought on their behalf, the black soldiers are denied virtually every privilege and amenity that is matter of course for their white counterparts; as in armies past and future, they are given the most menial and demeaning of tasks. Still, none of the soldiers quit the regiment when given the chance. The unofficial leaders of the group are gravedigger John Rawlins (Morgan Freeman) and fugitive slave Trip (Denzel Washington), respectively representing the brains and heart of the organization. The 54th acquit themselves valiantly at Fort Wagner, SC, charging a fortification manned by some 1,000 Confederates. Glory was based on Lincoln Kirstein's Lay This Laurel and Peter Burchard's One Gallant Rush; the latter book was founded on the letters of Col. Robert Gould Shaw, the real-life character played by Matthew Broderick. The film won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for co-star Denzel Washington, and additional statuettes for Best Cinematography (Freddie Francis) and Sound Recording.

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
This stirring, meticulously produced historical drama pays long-overdue tribute to the nation's first all-black infantry unit, organized to fight for the Union during the Civil War. It provides a great role for Matthew Broderick, who is letter-perfect as the idealistic but callow Colonel Shaw, charged with training an undisciplined group of former slaves that becomes the 54th Regiment of the Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry. Morgan Freeman is equally impressive as an intelligent, dignified soldier who clashes regularly with cynical malcontent Denzel Washington, whose dynamic portrayal earned him a richly deserved Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. All the acting is great, for that matter, but ultimately Glory's effectiveness is determined by director Edward Zwick (Courage Under Fire), who expertly balances the need for verisimilitude with the demands of cinematic storytelling. He recreates the era, the events, and the attitudes with remarkable fidelity -- in part by relying on the real-life Shaw's diaries -- and stages his harrowing battle scenes with both panoramic sweep and surgical precision. Brimming with emotion and grandeur, Glory documents a long-forgotten aspect of Civil War history in an immensely satisfying manner. The two-disc DVD Special Edition has a rich selection of extras, including from commentary from Zwick, Freeman, and Broderick; a documentary, "The True Story of Glory Continues," narrated by Freeman; and an exclusive featurette entitled "Voices Of Glory."
All Movie Guide - Michael Costello
Edward Zwick's account of the experience of a group of African-Americans who served in combat during the Civil War is a rousing display of pageantry. The film was based partly on the letters of Col. Robert Gould Shaw (Matthew Broderick), the commander of the all-black 54th Regiment of the Massachussetts Volunteers, a unit formed to test the widely doubted ability of black troops to serve in combat. The film details the racist indignities to which the black soldiers were subjected, such as a lower rate of pay than white troops and delays in receiving provisions. The drama of the black regiment's training sequence, such as it is, revolves around the ability of Shaw to remedy these problems. Zwick has fabricated a group of four black characters to represent a cross section of the regiment, but, as in a WWI movie, their only purpose here is to bond and prepare to fight. As the film approaches its climax, with James Horner's theme becoming more throbbingly insistent, it's consumed almost entirely in the kind of pageantry that was John Ford's specialty. Just as this begins to become annoying, Zwick plunges one back into the horror of war in the attack on Fort Wagner. While one can quibble with aspects of the film, such as making a white officer the lead and narrator, the surfeit of TV-movie-like uplift, and the lack of substance in the parts of the black characters, all are outweighed by value of the film in more widely disseminating an invaluable piece of history. The project benefits from tremendous performances by Morgan Freeman as the unit's elder statesman, and Denzel Washington, who garnered an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

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Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Sony Pictures
Region Code:
Sony PSP

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Matthew Broderick Col. Robert Gould Shaw
Denzel Washington Trip
Morgan Freeman John Rawlins
Cary Elwes Cabot Forbes
Cliff De Young Col. Montgomery
Andre Braugher Searles
Jihmi Kennedy Sharts
Jane Alexander Mrs. Shaw
John Finn Sgt. Mulcahy
Bob Gunton General Hunter
Alan North Gov. Andrew
Christian Baskous Pierce
RonReaco Lee Mute Drummer Boy
Jay O. Sanders Gen. Strong
Richard Riehle Quartermaster
Mark A. Levy Bigoted Soldier
Ray Godshall Dr. Thorpe
Donovan Leitch Morse
J.D. Cullum Russell
Michael Smith Guess "A" Company Soldier
Abdul Salaam El Razaac "A" Company Soldiers
Peter Michael Goetz Francis Shaw
Pete Munro Surgeon
Benji Wilhoite Young Soldier
Ethan Phillips Hospital Steward
Randell Haynes Paymaster
Afemo Omilami Tall Contraband
Keith Noble Short Contraband
Dan Biggers Minister
Marc Gowan Dr. Rogers
Bob Minor Contraband Soldier
Joan Riordan White Woman
Saundra Franks Black Woman
Mark A. Jones 54th Soldier
Mark Margolis 10th Conn. Soldier
Paul Desmond 10th Conn. Soldier
Richard Wright 10th Conn. Soldier
Raymond St. Jacques Frederick Douglass
Daniel Jenkins "A" Company Officer
Chad Dowdell Wounded Soldier (uncredited)
Lance Norris Man In Crowd (Boston)
Freddie Fields Actor

Technical Credits
Edward Zwick Director
Pieter Jan Brugge Co-producer
Philip C. Cory Special Effects
Freddie Fields Producer
Freddie Francis Cinematographer
Carl Fullerton Makeup Special Effects
Norman Garwood Production Designer
Marshall Herskovitz Screenwriter
James Horner Score Composer
Francine Jamison-Tanchuck Costumes/Costume Designer
Kevin Jarre Screenwriter
Garrett Lewis Set Decoration/Design
Bob Minor Stunts
Keith Pain Art Director
Mario Roberts Stunts
Steven Rosenblum Editor
Gregg Rudloff Sound/Sound Designer
Dan Webster Art Director
Kevin Yagher Special Effects

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