13 January 2008 | cooncat
Dramatic romp through the Civil War years
As others have mentioned, this is a series of recollections of events which may (or may not) have occurred during the American Civil War. It is related from the point of view of a 'neutral' war correspondent, who's talent is for drawing sketches of what he has seen on various battle fields, from Bull Run to Appomattox Ct. House. There is considerable 'time jumping' from one period of the war, to another, which inhibits continuity to some extent. For me the best part of the mini-series was watching Gregory Peck (as Abraham Lincoln) deliver the Gettysburg address. However, we are thrown into that scene without adequate preamble, so even this is diminished from what it could have been.
I am quite an avid amateur Civil War historian, having read many books and watched many TV series (including the excellent PBS series by Ken Burns, and the complete 3 volume set of books on the Civil War by historian Shelby Foote) on the subject. If you are looking for historical accuracy you will be disappointed. If you, on the other hand, are simply looking for a decent dramatization (ala "Gone With the Wind), you will enjoy this series.
The acting by the cast was, in general, C+, with the exception of a few of the notables (Gregory Peck, for one). As my summary states, this is a dramatic romp, so if you keep that in mind and set your sites correspondingly on the low side, you will not be disappointed.