Oskar Schindler is a vainglorious and greedy German businessman who becomes an unlikely humanitarian amid the barbaric Nazi reign when he feels compelled to turn his factory into a refuge for Jews. Based on the true story of Oskar Schindler who managed to save about 1100 Jews from being gassed at the Auschwitz concentration camp, it is a testament for the good in all of us. Written by
Harald Mayr <email@example.com>
Ranked #3 on the American Film Institute's 100 Most Inspiring Movies of All Time (2006). See more »
Yerushalayim shel Zahav was not written until twenty years after WWII (see trivia). See more »
[a Hebrew prayer is chanted, followed by a flashback to 1940s Poland]
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The theatrical version juxtaposed images from the film of the actors portraying certain identified "Schindler Jews" as each actual person placed a stone on Schindler's grave. The VHS version does not use this device, showing only the actual persons, credited by name. See more »
The most amazing thing about this film is that it was not made to be an epic or an acclaimed film. Spielberg made it as a personal film for himself and other Jews affected by the Holocaust. There is nothing flashy about the film except for Neeson's bravura performance. Spielberg's usual style is invisible, and the cinematography and editing, although excellent, are not shown off to make a spectacle of the film or give it an epic feel. Yet it is still a compulsive, involving, and utterly heart-wrenchingly moving filming of a part of history that should not be forgotten. The screenplay is one of the best ever written: it captures the stories of so many Holocaust survivors but without distracting from the main story at hand. The black and white photography and editing is perfect, and John Williams provides a perfectly subtle but nice music score. The acting is simply brilliant, with Liam Neeson towering as Oskar Schindler, and Ralph Fiennes bringing out the Nazi character Amon Goeth into full flesh. And Ben Kingsley and Embeth Davidtz give off excellent performances too. The film also has a lot to say about absolute power corrupting and spiraling out of control, and such a message of the film can be applied to any time and crisis, not just the Holocaust. This is not just one of the the ten best films ever produced, but it shall remain so for years to come, because its messages in terms of power and racism are applicable in any age.
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