Honest Abe’s surge in popularity continues with Kino Classics’ release of D.W. Griffith’s “Abraham Lincoln” on Blu-ray (November 13), starring Walter Huston (father of John, grandfather of Anjelica) as the 16th president.
The Blu-ray has been mastered in HD from a 35mm restoration by the Museum of Modern Art. The disc includes a special introduction that was originally taped for the 1930 re-release of “Birth of a Nation,” featuring a conversation between Griffith and Huston. (That the Lincoln-oriented intro would have appeared along with Griffith’s “Birth of a Nation,” which notoriously depicts Ku Klux Klansmen as heroes and African-Americans as crazed criminals, is brazenly strange and ironic.)
“Abraham Lincoln” was Griffith’s first talkie, and on its release in 1930, the sound era had only been in swing for a few years. The Kino edition of the film is the most complete available, with approximately three minutes of footage missing from other DVD versions.
Check out a clip from “Abraham Lincoln” below. Huston’s physical resemblance to the president, much like Daniel Day-Lewis’ in Spielberg’s upcoming “Lincoln,” is striking.