I was surprised to see some professional critics remark that the film was nothing but a dry historical lesson. When I went to the theater, I found myself fully immersed in the film for all of its 150 minutes. Like any great movie, it tells a story very much worth telling in a fashion that's completely absorbing and gripping even if we know the outcome. Daniel Day-Lewis' performance is as terrific and deserving of all the awards he won for the part. He creates a performance that feels so lived in and real that he completely embodies our 16th President for all of the film's running time. His Lincoln is a sort mischievous storyteller who has both a folksy charm and a commanding presence, and it's easy to see why the nation loved him. Supporting performances are equally strong, and include Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln, Tommy Lee Jones as abolitionist Thaddeus Stevens, David Strathairn as Lincoln's secretary of state, and Joseph Gordon Levitt as Robert Todd Lincoln. The cast is filled with one remarkable performer after another. Scene stealers include Lee Pace, Michael Stuhlbarg, Walton Goggins, and of course, James Spader who creates a remarkably funny character. Spielberg doesn't get enough credit for his masterful direction and Tony Kushner's screenplay is a fascinatingly well constructed work. I could go on discussing the wonderful jobs by all of the film's crew but I won't. Needless to say, each of the film's 12 Academy Award nominations were well deserved and the film deserved more wins that it had on Oscar night.
The Blu-ray looks amazing, as should any recent production. Janusz Kaminski's cinematography is perfectly replicated on this Blu-ray disc which is sharp, detailed, and very film-like. The film's soundtrack is equally well replicated in 7.1-channel DTS-HD Master Audio.
As you can probably tell, I loved the film enough to spring for the pricier 4-disc edition which includes a bonus disc of special features. In total, they run about 80-minutes. As always, the supplements on Spielberg's films are well produced, but I was disappointed there wasn't more. For a film dealing with such great historical significance and what I imagine was a huge production, the extras could and probably should've gone on for another two hours. They could have explored the real life Lincoln and passing of the 13th Amendment, and taken a more detailed approach to documenting the film's production. But what we get is great stuff and worth the purchase for fans of the film.
In summation, an excellent film. One of the very finest of 2012 and an excellent Blu-ray.