As a history geek and a movie geek, this was quite a moment. Finally a fully fleshed out movie about Lincoln. I can't imagine an actor wanting to take on such an iconic character, a person who has had so much written about him. If anybody was going to do it, Daniel Day Lewis might be the one. A few observations --- The whole cast is excellent. Lewis seems like a certain Oscar winner IMO. Other icons of the era, including David Strathairn as Seward, Bruce McGill as Edwin Stanton, Sally Field as the high-strung Mary Lincoln and a special note for Tommy Lee Jones as the eccentric, crusty, bewigged and profane abolitionist Thaddeus Stevens; these characters are all writ large. Lewis completely nails Lincoln, including his fairly high, wiry drawl, as near as anybody can know in the absence of a recording. The movie is very talky, only a few, short, bloody scenes of battle and its aftermath. Lincoln and his debates with his staff and the epic debate in the House over ratification of the 13th Amendment that freed the slaves have about equal time. At 2 1/2 hours, it's not a short movie, but it is intellectually dense and very much condensed. There's enough content to make a 10 hour movie. To fully appreciate this movie, it's helpful to NOT go in ignorant. The dialog doesn't suffer idiots or the historically uninformed. These guys were living with epic issues in a historic time where the way forward was anything but clear. Big issues are flying around for the whole 2 1/2 hours. It will help if you know the cast of characters before you see the movie; you will recognize most of them if you have ever seen all those old photos from the era. The movie hints at, but doesn't do much with Lincoln's well documented depressions, but it does definitely illustrate the physical effect of the stress of the war on the man. The movie stays pretty close to history, so I don't have to tell you what Lincoln's fate is at the end, nor what happened to Seward. The finale is very reverent and it's obvious that Speilberg treated this story with high respect. There are light moments (especially the back-room arm twisting by Lincoln's political operatives getting votes in the House), but you can't avoid getting the feeling that Speilberg knew he had a responsibility to do movie right and really tell the story. My one reservation about authenticity... as a Chesapeake Bay person…there's a scene where crabs are being eaten and it's obvious that whoever shot that scene has not the slightest idea how to pick a crab. I'll have to see this one again.