Gods and Generals: (Extended Director's Cut)HD Closed Captioning
Ronald F. Maxwell
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About the Movie
Covering four major battles of the Civil War and based on the book of the same title by Jeff Shaara, this epic saga charts the early years of the Civil War, how the campaigns unfolded from Manassas to the Battle of Fredericksburg and the rise and fall of legendary war hero "Stonewall Jackson."
Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews
- Reviews Counted: 121
- Fresh: 10
- Rotten: 111
- Average Rating: 3.5/10
Top Critics' Reviews
Rotten: What the filmmakers fail to recognize is that history on the page is quite different from what it needs to be onscreen, namely alive and visceral.
Rotten: It's a plodding, episodic film, reverent and sanctimonious, and its pro-Southern viewpoint -- a time-honored Hollywood tendency -- makes Gone With the Wind look like a Northern polemic.
Rotten: An inert pageant of waxen figures that fails completely as drama even as it insults the sensibilities of anyone not clinging to rosy memories of the slave-era South.
Rotten: A shameless apologia for the Confederacy as a divinely inspired crusade for faith, home and slave labor.
Forget the critics
The Civil War was a devastating event in American history. Brothers literally fought brothers, facing one another across vicious fields of fire. "Gods And Generals" is not a defense of the south, but a picture in time of the view of the Confederate states. Yes, it's a very lengthy movie, as was its predecessor, "Gettysburg" - how can a story of that magnitude be told in 90 minutes?
"Gods And Generals" humanizes those who fought for the South, especially General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson. He was a man of genuine, if imperfect faith. One of the most moving scenes in the movie shows Jackson and his slave, Jim, in prayer. Is this a romantic view of the Civil War? Perhaps. But it succeeds in showing that men on both sides wrestled with their consciences, hopes, and dreams, and reveals them to be very, very human.
Finally, A Deep Civil War Movie!
The movie's action may lack visceral impact but this movie is one that at least acknowledges that there were two partially correct sides to the war, which was not entirely based on slavery. I was very moved by the portrayals of Lee and Jackson. I recommend that you watch this movie if you have a decent amount of time available.
The Critics Are Stupid
Never mind those idiots. This is a wonderful movie. I once had it on CD-ROM, but it went bad. So I bought it here.
Stonewall Jackson is shown as a human being who felt deeply about his relationship with God, and the issue of slavery.
The movie also shows the reasons Abraham Lincoln was so distressed as it accurately portrays the terrible northern losses at Fredericksburg (thanks to Burnside) and Chancellorsville (thanks to Hooker). Both of these battles were touted as they were - tremendous southern victories. But then came Gettysburg and the long, downhill slide of the Army of Virginia.
I would highly recommend the movie for learning the truth about the Civil War and those therein. It gives us more than just one lopsided view while portraying Jackson & Lee to be human beings. Highly flawed, but human nonetheless