Let’s get this straight – Hollywood makes history, not the other way round. If Mel Gibson says that Braveheart had sex with a French princess who would only have been 4 years old at the time, then he damn well did. And so, if Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln film portrays two politicians in Connecticut as supporters of slavery, who are we to point out that actually they voted in favour of the abolition and that the director has libelled the dead and shamed their legacy? If ET’s dad says it happened then it must’ve happened.
The fuss about this fudging of facts has been raised by U.S. Congressman Joe Courtney, who was horrified to see his own state of Connecticut’s history rewritten for dramatic effect, in the Oscar-nominated film about the comically bearded slave freer.
In a letter to the Jaws director, Courtney wrote:
“After finally sitting down to watch your Academy Award-nominated film, Lincoln, I can say unequivocally that the rave reviews are justified.
“The historical accuracy of the film's moving conclusion, however? Well, that is a different story. As a Member of Congress from Connecticut, I was on the edge of my seat during the roll call vote on the ratification of the 13th Amendment outlawing slavery. But when two of three members of the Nutmeg State's House delegation voted to uphold slavery, I could not believe my own eyes and ears.
“How could Congressmen from Connecticut - a state that supported President Lincoln and lost thousands of her sons fighting against slavery on the Union side of the Civil War - have been on the wrong side of history?
“Placing the State of Connecticut on the wrong side of the historic and divisive fight over slavery is a distortion of easily verifiable facts and an inaccuracy that should be acknowledged, and if possible, corrected before Lincoln is released on DVD.”
He might do it too. After all, he did reinstate the guns for the Blu-ray of E.T. after stupidly digitally erasing them in 2002.