Having watched the latest ads about this monstrous distortion of history, i.e. Spielberg's "Lincoln," I fear for the future of the American republic. Many Americans are totally ignorant of the most basic facts of history, and they will readily swallow this Hollywood malarkey as truth. So much easier to watch a movie than read a book.
The new ads show Lincoln as a passionate purveyor of equality for blacks in America, motivated only by his deep convictions of freedom for slaves and his love of a suffering humanity, with emancipation his major, overriding goal.
In truth, the slaves were not much of a consideration while Lincoln was using military force to destroy Southern independence. To Lincoln, the slaves were both a nuisance and a political tool; he didn't care for blacks at all, considered them an inferior race, and wanted to get rid of them by deporting them to Africa or Central America. His attitude per Spielberg was "Oh, let's free black people and make them our social and political equals!" His actual attitude was, "Let's get these damn inferior Negros outta here."
The facts show that Lincoln was utterly ruthless, politically ambitious and even dictatorial in office. He knowingly and enthusiastically supported war on civilians, the burning of private homes and universities, and he hoped for a slave rebellion that would murder Southerners in their beds (thus saving him the trouble). However, that's reality. Spielberg's fictional Lincoln was a caring, weeping, meek and mild messianic figure who wanted to end the scourge of slavery, all out of the goodness of his heart, for justice, mercy, equality, for puppy dogs and butterflies, for tulips in spring and peppermint candy canes at Christmas. It's enough to gag a mule.
Update: This Canadian website has an interesting essay on the Lincoln myth, "Lincoln: An Invented Hero."