History vs. Hollywood: Glory

1633 Words Nov 24th, 2013 7 Pages
Glory: Hollywood vs. History Glory is a movie about the 54th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment, one of the first official all black units in the United States during the Civil War. It’s an inspirational story of how a young Union soldier, Robert Gould Shaw, is offered the chance to lead an army unit that will change not only his life, but the lives of many other Americans.
Glory does a great job of capturing many of the feelings towards the black soldiers during the Civil War. The film is based off of the writings of Robert Gould Shaw, from letters he sent to his friends and family members. Most of the events in the movie are depicted very closely to how they actually happened. Director Edward Zwick tried to keep the movie as historically
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When the 54th is marching south, they run into a regiment of white soldiers, and a quarrel breaks out between Private Trip and some of the white men. Rawlins steps in to stop the fight and one of the white men is about to be disciplined, but Rawlins says that there is no need. This scene is displays the harsh criticism the 5th received, even from their own side, but it also gives a halo effect to Rawlins, who could have easily said nothing, and watched the soldier get punished. Later on down the road the 54th meets up with Colonel James Montgomery, the colonel of another all black regiment. In the movie Montgomery was a racist and didn’t discipline his men at all. While the real Montgomery was noted to have discipline issues, the movie probably took it way out of hand, Montgomery even shoots one of his men for misbehaving. Montgomery later takes the 54th “to see some action”, which actually meant looting and setting fire to a town of innocents. In the movie, Montgomery threatens Shaw to set fire to the town by saying he’ll take command of the 54th if he doesn’t follow orders, so Shaw reluctantly orders the town to be burned. Shaw writes of this event in his letters, stating “the civilian population of women and children were fired upon, forced from their homes, their possessions looted, and the town burned.” Shaw also noted, "On the way up, Montgomery threw several shells

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