Movies to Celebrate President’s Day
The United States celebrates President’s Day on the third Monday of February each year. Originally, the holiday recognized George Washington, whose birthday was February 22. But in later years, it has been extended to honor other US presidents as well. If you are looking for a way to celebrate these leaders with your family, check out these movies that pay homage to two of them died in service to their country.
Despite the title, this film is not a dramatized biography of the 16th president. Instead, it portrays the leader’s struggle to pass the 13 Amendment, and end slavery in America. Daniel Day-Lewis portrays Lincoln with wit, wisdom and unwavering devotion to his cause.
The assassination of Abraham Lincoln is examined through the trial of Mary Surratt (Robin Wright), the only woman amongst eight suspects arrested for conspiring to kill the president. James McAvoy plays the lawyer who receives the unenviable assignment to provide her defense council.
Younger children may enjoy some of the fictional films that include Abraham Lincoln as a character. National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets uses his death as the starting point for the plot of this adventure story. He comes back to life in Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian. And he helps a couple of kids complete their homework in Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.
John F. Kennedy
Kennedy was the president when America went through the Cuban Missile Crisis. Take your teens through the frantic backroom conversations that occurred while trying to defuse a powder-keg moment between two global superpowers.
Conspiracy theories abound about the assassination of American President John F. Kennedy (played by Brett Stimely). This movie retells the fateful day in 1963 through the experiences of ordinary people who witnessed the event, like the emergency staff at Parkland Hospital (Zac Efron, Marcia Gay Harden).
Lee Daniels’ The Butler
Kennedy is one of serval presidents served at the White House by a Black butler (played by Forest Whitaker). The movie provides a unique behind-the-scenes look at these leaders and the social issues they faced during 1952 and 1986.