This weekend I took in the latest documentary concerning the life of our 16th President. Being raised in the Land of Lincoln of Lincoln I have more than a passing interest in President Lincoln. Despite being such a public man it surprising there are still things unknown about him. There are rumors surrounding his sexual orientation. There is a lively debate as to the roll Lincoln’s opposition to slavery really played in his decision to go to war. Now we have the question of whether or not he did indeed battle the undead and if so when did that battle begin and end.
Ordinarily when I talk about a movie I will warn the reader if I am going to spoil some part of the movie by writing about it. I do so as a courtesy for the benefit of those who have not yet seen the movie. In this case we all have a general idea of the story from history. There are parts of the movie I found I little far fetched. Yes, it seemed odd that Mr. Lincoln survived being hit by a thrown horse in a stampede and survived. Yes, Mr. Lincoln does seem to become a little overly proficient at killing vampires with an axe. However in all presidential documentaries one would expect some level of exaggeration. It is after all the victors of wars who write our history (as is pointed out in The Ruler of Demons). Does it really matter if a young Lincoln could chop down a tree with a single swing of his axe? The story and the lesson maybe more important than the historical accuracy. Besides the tall tale is as American as Paul Bunyun and icecream on apple pie.
It is also interesting that silver is becoming well excepted as a weapon against vampires. I do not remember silver being a weapon in the original Dracula by Bram Stoker (His real first name was Abraham). It is used in this movie as well as a number of other vampire movies. The theory behind silver being a weapon in this movie appears to relate to the story of Judis being paid in silver for the betray of Christ.
I would have liked to see a little more of Lincoln’s life riding the legal circuits practicing law. I would have also liked to see more of his life as a politician. I would expect that the halls of Congress were filled with the undead even in the 1800’s. Yet, the President lived such a rich life that I understand there is not enough time in a move to capture it all.
This was not the best movie of the summer so far. Yet, is was not a bad movie either. The premise may have been more entertaining than the movie itself. In politics I often wonder if given politicians are demons in disguise. Can we truly know whether there are not a few Senators who are not among the undead. It is good to know that one of our greatest presidents could recognize evil and stop it. It is also good to know that a great orator was not just good at talking but good with an Axe.