1998: Saving Private Ryan

Saving Private Ryan

Image via Wikipedia

Saving Private Ryan, easily one of the most well-crafted war movies of all time, is set after the Normandy landings in 1944. During the bloody battle on the shore, two brothers are killed. Shortly after, news arrives that a third brother has been killed in action in New Guinea. However, one brother still remains, who is behind enemy lines. It’s up to Captain John Miller (Tom Hanks) and his men to save Private James Ryan (Matt Damon), sparing Ryan’s mother from the torture of having to mourn the death of all four of her sons.

Right from the start, this movie is just a classic, with the opening 10-15 minutes showing the battle on the shores of Normandy, displaying the brutality and cold-blooded murder associated with war to an impressively realistic degree. Miller leads his men forward, to secure the beachhead, whilst all around him soldiers are being slaughtered and killed in a split-second. Even right from the start, whilst they’re on the boats heading towards the shores, the great acting shows realistic reactions and emotions that occur in soldiers before running straight into battle.

Miller, along with his team, head straight into the enemy territory, risking their lives to save Private Ryan. All the way through, they face death at every corner, persevering even through the toughest of times. The movie ends with Miller and co. finding Private Ryan, although it seems he is right in the middle of heavy enemy territory. After an epic and tense battle scene, the movie ends with Miller laying on the floor, talking to Private Ryan, telling him to “Earn this. Earn it.”. The movie then skips forward more than 50 years, showing Ryan reading a speech at a graveyard, standing next to the grave of Captain Miller.

From start to end, this movie is outstanding. Filled with action, suspense, and highly emotional dramatical scenes, this movie is sheer brilliance throughout. And, although very sad at parts, which would make any person feel like crying, this movie really is a feel-good one, with the themes of perseverance and determination to reach your goals being emphasised. With the genius directing skills of Steven Spielberg behind this movie, all of these factors plus more, that make the movie, are only greatly amplified.

This movie really does represent war movies at their finest. A masterpiece of cinematic display, that will always be a classic.

By Manpreet Singh

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