The Better Angels


The Better Angels

Critics Consensus

Malick-inspired but not as inspired as Malick, The Better Angels muffles an interesting idea under ponderous execution.



Total Count: 49


Audience Score

User Ratings: 671
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Movie Info

Indiana, 1817. The entire nation, only 40 years old and a few years removed from a second war of independence, is raw. Men, women, and children alike must battle nature and disease to survive in remote log cabins. This is young Abraham Lincoln's world. Spanning three years of the future president's childhood, The Better Angels explores his family, the hardships that shaped him, the tragedy that marked him forever, and the two women who guided him to immortality. Written and directed by A.J. Edwards, The Better Angels delves into visual and narrative poetry to express the Lincolns' world. The stark wilderness they inhabit comes alive in stunning black-and-white cinematography, and the story follows the lyrical course of the characters, who struggle physically and emotionally. They are forced to take on new additions to the family, learning what acceptance and empathy really mean. With an elegant touch and extreme attention to historical accuracy, Edwards shows the austerity of the era and reveals what shaped one of history's most distinctive leaders. (c) Amplify Releasing

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Brit Marling
as Nancy Lincoln
Diane Kruger
as Sarah Lincoln
Jason Clarke
as Tom Lincoln
Wes Bentley
as Mr. Crawford

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Critic Reviews for The Better Angels

All Critics (49) | Top Critics (20) | Fresh (22) | Rotten (27)

Audience Reviews for The Better Angels

  • Feb 10, 2014
    Edwards doesn't even try to hide the obvious and unoriginal way that he emulates Malick's style, and he seems more concerned with creating a powerful meditative experience than offering any real insight into what shaped Lincoln in his childhood to become the man he would be.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer

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