Birth of a Nation [1915]

A pivotal moment in film history. After The Birth of a Nation, nothing was the same: not the way audiences watched movies, not the way filmmakers created them. D.W. Griffith's jumbo-size saga of the Civil War expanded the boundaries of storytelling on the screen, conveying a richer, more complicated (and certainly longer) tale than anyone had seen in a movie before. The delicate relationships, the sad passage of time, the spectacular battle scenes all look as fresh and innovative today as they did in 1915. So do Griffith's brilliant actors, most of them--including favorite leading lady Lillian Gish--drawn from his regular stock company. What has become increasingly problematic about The Birth of a Nation is Griffith's condescending attitude toward black slaves, and the ringing excitement surrounding the founding of the Ku Klux Klan. Griffith, whose political ideas were naive at best, seemed genuinely surprised by the criticism of his masterwork, and for his next project he turned to the humanist preaching of the massive Intolerance. Despite protests, Birth sold more tickets than any other movie, a record that stood for decades, and President Woodrow Wilson famously compared it to "history written in lightning." That judgment has lasted. --Robert Horton

Buy this movie now

Share your thoughts on Birth of a Nation's quotes with the community:

Citation

Use the citation below to add this movie page to your bibliography:

Style:MLAChicagoAPA

"Birth of a Nation Quotes." Quotes.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2014. Web. 22 Sep. 2014. <http://www.quotes.net/movies/Birth of a Nation>.

Know another quote from Birth of a Nation?

Don't let people miss on a great quote from the "Birth of a Nation" movie - add it here!


The Web's Largest Resource for

Famous Quotes & Sayings


A Member Of The STANDS4 Network