Read Rocky's review here.
|Itzhak Stern and Oskar Schindler|
As we move through Graham's Top Ten (11) List of favourite films, here we are reviewing Schindler's List.
Graham will be disgusted by this, but I had never seen the entire movie until this weekend. Just before my 22nd birthday, I left work sick and went home to rest up as the next day I was flying to New Zealand - my first overseas trip! My aunty owned a dvd shop at that stage and so I grabbed Schindler's List on my way home to watch on the couch. Needless to say, whatever medication I took knocked me out cold and I only saw the first 30 minutes of it.
Watching it now, 20 years later, I can't say I was a very willing participant. The first two hours in particular (it goes for 3 hours) were very difficult to watch due to the heartless treatment of the Jewish people.
I noted to ever present photographers, at the parties mainly, and thought to myself, they were recording history and they probably didn't even realise it. I found myself wondering where all of the clothes and jewels and family heirlooms ended up once they were robbed from the unknowing Jewish people as they boarded those fated trains.
Oddly, I'm sitting on a train as I write this. The air is cool due to the Winter's night outside, but I don't let myself complain. Remembering the scenes on the trains throughout the movie send shivers up my spine.
It wasn't until the last hour that I could grow to like Oskar Schindler. When he began to become less self-focussed and put himself and his safety on the line for his workers.
The true hero of this film for me was Itzhac Stern. He was one step ahead of Schindler all the time, keeping his eyes open for those he might save by adding them to what would become, Schindler's List.
I also wondered, in the scene where they are found with the chicken, whether or not the man who is shot was really responsible, or was that little boy just extremely quick thinking. I like to think he was.
At the end, I felt like Schindler showed too much remorse, far too soon. Comforted by Stern. Reassured that he did an amazing thing in saving 1100 lives. As of course, he did. Perhaps it wasn't until he went to Auschwitz to save the women that he truly realised the ramifications of that war - to the human race.
Oh, and how about that glorious scene in the showers at Auschwitz when the showers came on and the women showed their relief that they weren't being gassed. So powerful.
I truly loved at the end when the actors led the real life people on Schindler's List to his grave to lay a stone. 6000 descendants from the survivors. In spite of his flaws, Oskar Schindler certainly left his mark on the world.
This is a film that has me thinking still and I know it will for a while to come.
I'm giving this one an 8/10 Rocky.