"U.S. History: The 19th Century" Resource List

Following are movies related to each assignment:

Assignment 1

"Amazing Grace" is based on the true story of British reformer William Wilberforce. Set in early 19th century, the story recounts Wilberforce's successful 20 year fight to abolish the British slave trade.

Assignment 2

"The Alamo"
This is a dramatization of the 1836 events that took place in San Antonio during the Texas Revolution. Davy Crockett (Billy Bob Thornton), Jim Bowie (Jason Patric), William Barrett Travis (Patrick Wilson), and about 185 Texans tried to hold a fort against a siege by thousands of Mexicans led by Santa Anna (Emilio Echevarrîa). The defenders died, but their resistance became a rallying cry for the Texas army, led by Sam Houston (Dennis Quaid).

Assignments 3, 4 and 5: Movies about the Civil War

  1. Glory
    This film is one of the very best Civil War movies ever made. It gives a stirring account of African-Americans in the Civil War, specifically the 54th Regiment of the Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry. This regiment led an assault against Fort Wagner at the Battle of Fort Wagner that helped turn the tide of battle. The film is historically accurate and rich in detail with superb acting from an all-star cast.

  2. Gettysburg
    This excellent film is based on one of the best war novels ever written, The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara. Well-staged battle scenes were actually filmed at Gettysburg lending the film greater authenticity. Gettysburg offers multifaceted character development and a superb performance by Jeff Daniels. With great music and an excellent screenplay, this movie is a must-see.

  3. Gone With the Wind
    This classic uses the Civil War as a backdrop to tell the tale of a strong-willed Southern woman. Gone with the Wind does a good job of depicting the South's point of view without moralizing. The burning of Atlanta and confiscating of Tara provides a compelling look at the effect of Sherman's March to the Sea on the Southern people.

  4. North and South
    This made for TV mini-series is an excellent telling of one of the most important periods of American History. The compelling story offers a well balanced look at a very dark period by portraying good and bad people on both sides. Patrick Swayze, James Read, and David Carradine offered superb performances in a movie that everyone should see.

  5. The Red Badge of Courage
    This movie based on the classic novel by Stephen Crane captures a young Union soldiers struggle with cowardice. Even though this film was reduced drastically from its original length by studio editors it still has stood the test of time. The movie offers some great battle scenes and narration from the novel. The Red Badge of Courage stars the World War 2's most decorated combat veteran, Audie Murphy.

  6. Shenandoah
    A successful planter in Virginia is unwilling to take sides in the American Civil War. However, he is forced to become involved when Union soldiers mistakenly capture his son. The family then proceeds to retrieve the son and along the way discover the horrors of war and the importance of family values. The movie offers superb scenery, a great story and tremendous acting from Jimmy Stewart.

  7. "Cold Mountain" (2003)
    "Cold Mountain" tells the story of Inman (Jude Law), a wounded confederate soldier who is on a perilous journey home to his mountain community, hoping to reunite with his pre-war sweetheart, Ada (Nicole Kidman). In his absence, Ada struggles to survive, and revive her father's farm with the help of intrepid young drifter Ruby (Renee Zellweger).

  8. "Gangs of New York" (2002)
    Martin Scorsese's "Gangs of New York" unfolds in 1860s lower Manhattan at a time of lawlessness, rampant political corruption and great unrest. With the Civil War underway, the country was torn apart and on the brink of chaos. For the inhabitants of Manhattan's Five Points, a war was also raging closer to home.

  9. "Gods and Generals" (2003)
    A sweeping epic charting the early years of the Civil War and how the campaigns unfolded from Manassas I to the Battle of Fredericksburg, this prequel to the film "Gettysburg" explores the motivations of the combatants and examines the lives of those who waited at home.

Assignment 8

"Kate & Leopold" (2001)
Kate's (Meg Ryan) ex-boyfriend (Liev Schreiber) discovers a way to travel through time, and accidently transports a relative of his, Leopold (Hugh Jackman) through time and into 2001. While trying to figure out how to get him back to where he belongs, Kate and Leopold fall in love.

Assignment 9

"The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford" (2007)
The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford delves into the private life and public exploits of America's most notorious outlaw

(Information gathered from www.about.com)

Audio described Videos.

Following are resources for obtaining audio described videos:

MoPix - Motion Picture Access

Audio Described Cinema and DVD
FULL LISTINGS of over 400 audio described videos at:
Or, by e-mail at:

(Submitted by: Julie Kay; Last updated: August 10, 2009)

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