1980s Glory (1989)

Published on January 28th, 2007 | by Chris

1

Glory (1989)

Review of: Glory (1989)

Reviewed by:
Rating:
3
On January 28, 2007
Last modified:October 4, 2012

Summary:

Starring Matthew Broderick, Denzel Washington, Cary Elwes, and Morgan Freeman, its the story of one of the few all-black Union companies formed during the war, the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry.

Glory (1989) - Civil War MoviesThe US Civil War is a period that hasn't received as much attention as World War II, or Vietnam, but the few films or miniseries that have come out about it have been nothing short of great.

1989's Glory continues that legacy. Starring Matthew Broderick, Denzel Washington, Cary Elwes, and Morgan Freeman, its the story of one of the few all-black Union companies formed during the war, the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry.

In itself, Glory is a fine picture. The performances by the above four are nothing short of spectacular. The battle scenes depict just what a terrific nightmare and waste of life warfare in the period was. And it portrays the conflict of the North vs. the "property owner" mentality of the seceding South brilliantly.

And of course you have typical "military" moments such as supply issues, conflict within the ranks, etc. etc. etc.

For all its greatness, though, one thing bothers me about Glory. At times it comes across as purposefully, over-the-top, politically correct. There are numerous scenes which, of course, looked at today you can't help but read into them what the director and writers put into them. I (much as I hate to say it) think though that such moments in reality wouldn't have given the actual participants much, if any pause at all. Times being what they were and all. Context being everything you know.

Some of the violence is a bit on the light side, some of it not. But if you can allow the PC-ness of parts to slide, then Glory is one you can't miss. You might be able to catch this on HDNet Movies again in the near future (as I was able to.)

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Description

One of the very best films about the Civil War, this instant classic from 1989 is also one of the few films to depict the participation of African American soldiers in Civil War combat. Based in part on the books Lay This Laurel by Lincoln Kirstein and One Gallant Rush by Peter Burchard, the film also draws from the letters of Robert Gould Shaw (played by Matthew Broderick), the 25-year-old son of Boston abolitionists who volunteered to command the all-black 54th Regiment of the Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry...

DVD Information

Binding: DVD
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Audience Rating: R (Restricted)
Brand: Sony
Manufacturer: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Original Release Date:
Actors:
  • Matthew Broderick
  • Denzel Washington
  • Cary Elwes
  • Morgan Freeman

Reviews

Customer reviews
Average Customer Review

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A most wonderful movie that moves along with the daily lives of ..., December 4, 2015
By 
Lorraine H. (Seneca, IL USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Glory (Amazon Video)
A most wonderful movie that moves along with the daily lives of the first black volunteers and their officers who fought in the Civil War. This also covers some of the prejudices they suffered with both those whose side they were fighting with and also their enemies. The subject matter is so relevant.

At the beginning I was a bit annoyed with Matthew Broderick's doe eyed responses as Col. Robert Shaw, upon whose letters that were sent to his mother are what this movie is based on. By the end of the movie, I was definitely hooked with those doe eyes.

I can never say enough about how much I always enjoy Morgan Freeman along with Denzel Washington's acting and, in this movie, the soldiers they portray.

The battle scenes throw you into the madness as your neighbors and comrades perish, but you are still alive and breathing to fight the next battle with them.

Next to Saving Private Ryan, this is a must watch movie for those history buffs that... Read more
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Civil War Drama, August 31, 2016
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This review is from: Glory (Special Edition, Repackaged) (DVD)
The film was perfectly played out re the 54th Regiment of the Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, one of the first all-black regiments, that had the distinction of being the first to have gone into direct battle against the South. It was enjoyable re this historical re-enactment of actual persons, maybe not as exciting as the movie 'Gettysburg', which had a larger budget, but none the less quite satisfying. After the Civil War had ended, some of the surviving African-American members of the 54th, having respect and admiration of their prior fallen commander Robert Gould Shaw, set about to form their own GAR (Grand Army of the Republic) Post, 'n was granted #146; the GAR was a prestigious organization, that up until then, had been made up of mostly 'white State and County Union Veterans (the GAR was similar to our present day 'Veterans Organizations'). Although their original Post didn't survive more than 2 yrs due to lack of contribution funds, I'm lucky enough to have one of their... Read more
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars GLORY {BLU-RAY}, February 6, 2013
By 
Gregory P. Jerkich (Euclid, Ohio USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Glory [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
This to me is a really well done movie with a notable cast. I personally wish this could have been in the 2:40:1 aspect ratio instead of the 1:85:1. You would have gotten a better sense of the battles & more of how the fighting actually was done. The movie is still ok. I would buy this in any aspect ratio probably. The audio sounded fine to me, although I listen with external speakers hooked up to an old stereo system. No Digital here. The Blu-Ray looked pretty good, like most Blu-Rays do. I wouldn't say it will knock your socks off, but I did look at my Dvd copy & I will not be watching that version any more. At times, with most of these Blu-Rays, you kind of feel like you're watching a regular Dvd until you compare the two. I'm sure you would pick the Blu-Rays over the Dvd's every time. The color seemed to be real nice too. As far as Special Features go you get : Commentary - Virtual Civil War Battlefields {very informative} - Voices of Glory - The True Story continues - & the... Read more
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Glory (1989) Chris

Summary: Starring Matthew Broderick, Denzel Washington, Cary Elwes, and Morgan Freeman, its the story of one of the few all-black Union companies formed during the war, the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry.

3.0


User Rating: 0 (0 votes)


About the Author

I've been watching war movies for probably 25 years now. Since December 2006 I've been sharing my habit and passion for these movies here on this site.



One Response to Glory (1989)

  1. As is usually the case for a Memorial Day Weekend, several cable/satellite networks will be chock full of classic war movies this coming weekend. Namely Turner Classic Movies, Fox Movie Channel, and AMC. I’m sure there are many more but these are “The B

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