A film that finally show better that the Civil War wasn't just fought between white males on each side and that even colored people was against freeing the slaves while other joined the army. The biggest fault with this important story is that it is told through a white man's eye and that Matthew Broderick look "wrong" for the role. Poetic direction, violent battle sequences and the strong human drama help out.
Story's fine. In general. Until it hits a few knots every now and then trying way too hard to prove a point obvious from the point of, well, it's title. What is worse the script knowingly cripples itself, drifting illogically and thus maintaining the whole thing at high school drama level.
Revisionist BS. Call the subtext behind Ed Zwick's, and Kevin Costner's Dances with Wolves, mythology. Denzel hopped over the noble story and gave a brave performance that elevated the material. Morgan Freeman was also great, always. Philosophically, the themes of these films are very troubling, It's History as much do with Hollywood's invention of it. Good film? that depends.