Lincoln: The Screenplay

Lincoln: The Screenplay

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by Tony Kushner

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“All forward thrust and hot-damn urgency…A brilliant, brawling epic. Screenwriter Tony Kushner blows the dust off history by investing it with flesh, blood, and churning purpose. . . . A great American movie.” –Peter Travers, Rolling Stone

Lincoln is a rough and noble democratic masterpiece. And the genius of Lincoln

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“All forward thrust and hot-damn urgency…A brilliant, brawling epic. Screenwriter Tony Kushner blows the dust off history by investing it with flesh, blood, and churning purpose. . . . A great American movie.” –Peter Travers, Rolling Stone

Lincoln is a rough and noble democratic masterpiece. And the genius of Lincoln, finally, lies in its vision of politics as a noble, sometimes clumsy dialectic of the exalted and the mundane…And Mr. Kushner, whose love of passionate, exhaustive disputation is unmatched in the modern theater, fills nearly every scene with wonderful, maddening talk. Go see this movie.” –A.O. Scott, New York Times

“A lyrical, ingeniously structured screenplay. Lincoln is one of the most authentic biographical dramas I’ve ever seen…grand and immersive. It plugs us into the final months of Lincoln’s presidency with a purity that makes us feel transported as if by time machine.” –Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly

A decade-long collaboration between three-time Academy Award® winner Steven Spielberg and Pulitzer Prize winner Tony Kushner, Lincoln is a revealing drama that focuses on the 16th President’s tumultuous final months in office. Having just won re-election in a country divided, Lincoln pursues a course of action designed to end the war, unite the country and abolish slavery. With the moral courage and fierce determination to succeed, his choices during this critical moment will change the fate of America, and generations, to come. Containing eight pages of color photos from the film and inspired by Doris Kearns Goodwin’s critically acclaimed Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, Lincoln is now a major motion picture by DreamWorks starring two-time Academy Award® winner Daniel Day-Lewis.

Tony Kushner's plays include Angels in America, Parts One and Two; A Bright Room Called Day; Slavs!; Homebody/Kabul; Caroline, or Change, a musical with composer Jeanine Tesori; and The Intelligent Homosexual's Guide to Capitalism and Socialism with a Key to the Scriptures. He wrote the screenplays for Mike Nichols's film of Angels in America and for Steven Spielberg's Munich. Kushner is the recipient of a Pultizer Prize, two Tony Awards, three Obie Awards, two Evening Standard Awards, an Olivier Award, an Emmy Award, and two Oscar nominations, among other honors. In 2008 he was the first recipient of the Steinberg Distinguished Playwright Award.

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Editorial Reviews

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"Rousing, provocative and utterly relevant. Lincoln the man and Lincoln the movie serve to remind us that democracy and the leadership it demands aren’t always pretty. But they can be beautiful.” –Ann Hornaday, Washington Post

“Hollywood’s most successful director turns on a dime and delivers his most restrained, interior film. A celebrated playwright shines an illuminating light on no more than a sliver of a great man’s life. A brilliant actor surpasses even himself and makes us see a celebrated figure in ways we hadn’t anticipated. This is the power and surprise of Lincoln.” –Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times

“Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln is a work of sufficient richness to instantly invite repeat viewings…Kushner’s script is more than just elegant in its compression and exposition. It is steeped in the traditions of a political dramaturgy that were familiar to Shakespeare and Schiller but that have not often been practiced in American historical films.” –Geoffrey O’Brien, New York Review of Books

“Spielberg and Kushner marched straight down the center of national memory, the moment of glory and anguish, and they got it right…Kushner realized that nineteenth century politics were essentially theatrical. He elevated the back-and-forth interplay of meetings and debate into eloquence, tirade, insult, rodomontade…in Kushner’s version, the range of speech is almost Shakespearean.” –David Denby, New Yorker

“Catnip for political junkies, Lincoln might be called 'Our Better Angels in America.' What more auspicious time to release a film about the president who served during the Civil War than these insecure, battle-weary times of ours?” –James Verniere, Boston Herald

“Better than any other, the movie captures President Lincoln’s awkward, shuffling, distinctly democratic greatness. The low in him that caused sophisticates to sneer. The high in him shaped by Shakespeare and Euclid. The humanity, frailty and aching introspection. The shrewdness, decisiveness and ferocious will. It is the democratic faith that exceptional leaders can be found among common folk.” –Michael Gerson, Washington Post

“Perfectly calibrated screenplay…Kushner finds an artful way to weave in the texts of the Gettysburg Address and the 13th Amendment, as well as a creative way to present Lincoln's assassination.” –Claudia Puig, USA Today

“One of the shrewdest things Kushner has ever written…Throughout Lincoln, Kushner's skill in illuminating the margins of great events is on display.” –Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune

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Product Details

Theatre Communications Group
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5.30(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.70(d)

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Lincoln: The Screenplay 1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I found out this book was not necessary for my class on day 15 after ordering. I was not able to return it due to the Barnes and Noble return policy that can not be adjusted for any reason. Actually this was an inexpensive lesson on why NOT to buy your textbooks from Barnes and Noble!