Andersonville is the latest American Civil War movie to arrive on DVD, that
contains some of the most realistic depictions of this turbulent time in
American history. Andersonville captures the true elements of war that include
the harsh times of the era such as death, disease, racism, internal conflicts
and a variety of other problems that are associated with a civil war. The
movie also faithfully recreates one of the worst prisoner camps of the Civil
War that was named "Andersonville" and held over 45,000 prisoners of war with
almost a quarter of them dying within the camp.
movie revolves around a young runner for the Union soldiers called Jim (played
by William H. Macy) who is captured by Confederate soldiers and is taken to
Andersonville. Fortunately for Jim, he is reunited with a few of his fellow
comrades who band together with other Union soldiers to escape from
Andersonville. Unfortunately, life within Andersonville is less than
hospitable and they must watch every move that they make, especially from a
dominant faction of prisoners called the "Raiders" who control the unwritten
law within the camp and add the despicably Captain Wirz, the commander of the
prisoner and you have one of the worst humanity conditions on Earth.
Without spoiling this epic movie any further (A total of 167
minutes), the movie contains many escape attempts, some frightful battles
between the various factions of Andersonville and some very impressive acting
from a majority of unknown actors. Acknowledgements should also be given to director John Frankenheimer
who does a brilliant job at directing this epic that contains thousands of
extras and actors that will be familiar and unfamiliar to viewers who help
make this one of the most intensive movies of all time.
DVD contains a few extras that include audio commentaries by the
director of the movie, John Frankenheimer) and various DVD-ROM features that
include "A soldiers journal", "Cast/Creator Profiles", "Historical Background"
and "Inside Andersonville".
picture quality of the DVD is shown in its original format of full screen
and there is not artefacting or any DVD errors throughout the movie at all.
The movie itself is quite "grey" but this is due to the conditions in
Andersonville but every now and then, such as the escape scene and the river
scene, a moment of colour (and hope) appears for the viewers. The sound
quality of Andersonville, although rarely used is Dolby Digital 5.1 and
sometimes sounds a little "flat" at the best of times but considering that it
was originally intended for television, it still sounds quite acceptable.
conclusion, Andersonville is a very "harsh" and thought provoking movie that
not only questions the motifs of war but also that of mankind itself.
of the actors in Andersonville are unknown but make a brilliant furore into the world of movies.
I recommended this DVD to
anyone who likes realistic war movies or for those that enjoy a very long
epic. Just a note of caution, as the movie was based on a real-world
event, don't expect any Hollywood endings.
- Audio Commentary :
One with Director John
Frankenheimer and the Other Commentary
includes writers, editors, producers and
- DVD ROM Features : Soldiers Journal, Images
from Andersonville, Cast/Creator Profiles,
Historical Background, Inside Andersonville
- Deleted Scenes : A Visit From the Ladies
- Interactive Menus
- Scene Access
- 167 minutes