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Glory (1989, Matthew Broderick, Denzel Washington)

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Glory focuses on the 54th Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, the first unit of black troops raised by the Union a month after President Lincoln announced the Emancipation Proclamation on 22 September 1862. The film boasts a fine screenplay by Kevin Jarre, which is remarkably faithful to the historical fact including the moving and fascinating letters, written to his mother, by Robert Gould Shaw, the first officer to lead the 54th against the Confederacy.

Matthew Broderick was perfectly cast as the callow Northern Colonel Robert Gould Shaw who is given command of the 54th and persuades his sceptical friend Major Cabot Forbes (Cary Elwes) to join him as his second-in-command. His educated black friend Thomas Searles (André Braugher) also joins up and is dismayed at the training camp to find himself sharing a camp with Sergeant Major John Rawlins (Morgan Freeman), embittered runaway slave Trip (Denzel Washington) and field hand Jupiter Sharts (Jihmi Kennedy).

production details
USA | 122 minutes | 1989

Dir: Edward Zwick
Writer: Kevin Jarre, from the books Lay this Laurel by Lincoln Kirstein and One Gallant Rush by Peter Burchard, and the letters of Robert Gould Shaw
cast
Bob Gunton as Gen. Charles Garrison Harker
Richard Riehle as Quartermaster
Jay O. Sanders as Gen. George Crockett Strong
Morgan Freeman as Sgt. Maj. John Rawlins
Andre Braugher as Cpl. Thomas Searles
Matthew Broderick as Col. Robert Gould Shaw
Denzel Washington as Pvt. Trip
Cary Elwes as Maj. Cabot Forbes
Jihmi Kennedy as Pvt. Jupiter Sharts
John Finn as Sgt. Maj. Mulcahy
Donovan Leitch as Capt. Charles Fessenden Morse
JD Cullum as Henry Sturgis Russell
Cliff De Young as Col. James M. Montgomery
Christian Baskous as Edward L. Pierce
RonReaco Lee as Mute Drummer Boy
Alan North as Gov. John Albion Andrew
Peter Michael Goetz as Francis George Shaw