1993: Schindler’s List

Schindler's List

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This week’s Monumental Movie, for the year 1993, is the Oscar-winning classic, Schindler’s List; a compelling, emotionally driven drama set in Poland during World War 2, about a business man named Oskar Schindler (Liam Neeson), whom, after witnessing the atrocity of the Nazis, decides to take action to protect his Jewish workers from a cruel death. Oskar Schindler, a German business man, at first, is merely concerned about his business and making huge profits. Being a supporter of the Nazi party, he is friends with many of the Nazi officials, including Amon Goeth (Ralph Fiennes).

Schindler hires Jewish accountant, Itzhak Stern (Ben Kingsley) to help him with the financial aspect of his work. Itzhak, although at first being understandably very reluctant, soon becomes closer to Schindler, and has an influence on him, as do many other factors, particularly the little girl in the red coat, which is a key aspect of this movie, and arguably the main factor causing the turning point at which Schindler decides to use his power and wealth to save as many Jews as possible.

Based on a novel, adapted from real-life events, the movie follows Schindler’s actions as he slowly begins to realise the barbarity and sadistic actions of the Nazis, all throughout showing the cruel Nazi oppression of the Jews, portraying the events accurately in comparison to the events that actually occurred within the years of 1939 to 1945; although a word of warning, there are some scenes which are quite upsetting to watch, and this is made worse by the fact that such events actually did occur.

The movie concludes with the war ending, and Schindler having saved the lives of over a thousand Jewish men, women and children; although he is still riddled with guilt due to the fact that he could have saved more. He stood up and helped the Jews, when no one else would dare, having a positive influence on everyone, including many, strong Nazi officials (not Hitler though…).

Although before watching this movie, I was somewhat repelled from it due to it being in black and white, I soon realised that this only added to the atmosphere and feel of the movie, significantly affecting the whole sense of the movie. And it also allows for the little girl in the red coat to stand out, which seemed to be a very important and symbolic gesture, perhaps of the innocence and pain in the mass slaughter of a race of people who have done nothing to deserve such a demise. It also seems to be the main turning point for Schindler, when he decides to help the Jews, sympathising for them, and feeling their pain.

The movie is just brilliant. Filled with emotion, drama, tension, and scenes which give you a heartfelt feeling of happiness, this movie is thoroughly enjoyable. Not once, did I find myself beginning to get bored or uninterested, even though the movie is a whopping 195 minutes long. The movie has all the elements of a good cinematic production: a great cast, solid acting, emotion, many other aspects, and particularly, a great and suited musical score provided by the great John Williams, and of course, the brilliant directing skills of Steven Spielberg. The movie is so well made, that you get caught up in its feel, and even though it is only an adaptation of the real events that occurred, the adaptation is done to a T, providing a convincing and brilliant movie experience, and an insight into the events of world war 2, and how one German man dared to go against the Nazi ideology. Basically, if you haven’t watched this movie, find three and a bit hours of spare time, sit down, and watch it.

By Manpreet Singh


3 Comments on “1993: Schindler’s List”

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