'Copperhead' is unlike any Civil War movie to date. A story of the violent passions and burning feuds that set ablaze the home front during the Civil War, 'Copperhead' is also a timeless and deeply moving examination of the price of dissent, the place of the individual amidst the hysteria of wartime, and the terrible price of war. Based on the extraordinary novel by Harold Frederic, which the great American critic Edmund Wilson praised as a brave and singular book that "differs fundamentally from any other Civil War fiction," 'Copperhead' is the story of Abner Beech, a stubborn and righteous farmer of Upstate New York, who defies his neighbors and his government in the bloody and contentious autumn of 1862.
With 'Copperhead', director Ron Maxwell, who with 'Gettysburg and Gods' and 'Generals' established himself as our foremost cinematic interpreter of the American Civil War, takes on the War from a stunning, unexpected and richly, unforgettably humanist angle. 'Copperhead' is a parable of the Civil War and perhaps for our own time.