Thoughts On The 25th Anniversary Of Schindler’s List

Oskar Schindler was a complicated man. He was a German industrialist and a member of the Nazi party. He was not exactly loyal to his wife. But he was also responsible for saving the lives of 1200 Jewish prisoners during The Holocaust.

This year, the film based on his life during the war, Schindler’s List, turns 25.

If there ever was a Holocaust film, Schindler’s List is that film. Liam Neeson played the title role. Directed by Steven Spielberg, the supporting cast includes Ben Kingsley and Ralph Fiennes. Filmed in stark black and white for 99% of the film, the movie pulls no punches. It forces the audience to keep their eyes on the screen and screams out that this is what hate and prejudice leads to.

This film is hard to watch, but it is hard to watch for a reason. It is still relevant 25 years later not only because hatred, prejudice and genocide are still happening, but also because there are some who continue to deny that The Holocaust is anything but historical fact.

May this film live on for eternity, as a reminder of what human beings can do to each other and why we must find a way to accept one another, even if one is different.

Son Of Saul Movie Review

It’s been 70 years since Auschwitz was liberated.

The death camp has been the subject of many films over the years.

While the mother of all Holocaust films is Schindler’s List (1993), another film has come out recently. While the subject of both films are the same, they are completely different.

The recent release Son Of Saul (2015), focuses on Saul Auslander (Geza Rohrig). Saul is a Sonderkommando. In the death camps, they were responsible for disposing of the bodies of the victims and preparing the belongings that the victims brought with them for dispersion. Among the bodies of the recently killed is the son that Saul never acknowledged during the boy’s brief lifetime. He becomes obsessed with one goal: finding a Rabbi and burying the boy properly.  But as Saul looks for a Rabbi, the Nazis look to destroy the Sonderkommando’s who are secretly planning a rebellion.

While other Holocaust films have not been shy to reveal the horror that is the Holocaust, this film is different. Devoid of music and shot with film with mainly closeup shots of the main character, this film is disturbing. Not that a Holocaust film should be light and funny, but this film is a stark reminder of how dark the world can be and how easy it can be to mistreat our fellow human being based simply on external factors.

I absolutely recommend this film. If you see one film over the next few weekends, see Son Of Saul. It will be a worthwhile viewing.


Throwback Thursday-Schindler’s List

Oskar Schindler  was many things. A womanizer, a sometimes less than honest business man and a Nazi. But he was still responsible for saving the lives of Jews who were headed to the crematorium of Auschwitz.

The 1993 Oscar winning movie, Schindler’s List, starring Liam Neeson in the title role is stark, black and white and unflinching. It dares the movie going audience to not look away, to see what unchecked prejudice, hatred and murder looks like.

If there was ever a Holocaust movie, this is it. I have seen many Holocaust movies, but this one consistently ranks at the top of the list. With an incredible supporting cast that includes Ben Kingsley (Itzhak Stern), Ralph Fiennes (Amon Goeth) and Embethz Davidtz (Helen Hirsch), this movie leaves a mark on the audience. Steven Spielberg, as the director, leaves no stone un-turned.

This movie should be required viewing, not just for school children, but for adults all over the world.

After the Holocaust, the phrase “Never Again” became a battle cry to remember the victims. “Never Again” has happened again. This movie is a reminder of what becomes of us when we let hatred and prejudice take over.

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