Robert Redford’s upcoming movie, “The Conspirator,” is about the people who were tried for the murder of Abraham Lincoln, including one woman and seven men. This thriller will keep viewers on the edges of their seats from the beginning to the end. This new movie release reveals things that have been lost in history. New movie “The Conspirator” is the first release of the American Film Company, a new company that will specialize in movies about the history of America. According to movie forums “The Conspirator” may garner some interest from older groups because they’re familiar with Redford but some younger people will stay away. This movie picture may do very well with schools and on DVD later on.
Redford knows that it’s hard to sell a historical drama so he deserves a pat on the back for telling this story, set in Washington after the Civil War. The story is about the trial of eight people: Mary Suratt, played by Robin Wright, and seven men, who were charged with a conspiracy to kill Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Johnson, the Vice President, and Edwin M. Stanton, the Secretary of State, played by Kevin Kline. The meatiest part of the story is about Mary Suratt’s relationship with the lawyer and Union war hero, Frederick Aiken, played by James McAvoy, who must defend her against a military tribunal with a strong Union bias. Suratt was the owner of the boarding house where the plot was reputedly hatched. It involved John Wilkes Booth and Suratt’s son John, played by Johnny Simmons.
Aiken comes to believe that Suratt has been set up as her son is the only man missing from the group and he takes strong measures to save her life. The most effecting part of the film is the mother – son relationship that grows between them. There is some criticism depicted about the politics of the time and the very touchy peace between the North and the South.
Redford has done movies before with an historical bent including “Quiz Show” and “All the President’s Men” and “The Conspirator” is not like something you’d be able to watch on the History Channel. The story feels fresh because it’s not in our history books, even though it was big news at the time. The cast is excellent, especially McAvoy as the reluctant lawyer. Wright does a beautiful job in the role of Suratt, displaying not only strength, but dignity as well. Kline is an wonderful Stanton and Tom Wilkinson and Evan Rachel Wood are also standouts.