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Unsere Mütter, unsere Väter (2013)
4 years of War on the Eastern Front
I watched this all in one weekend. We start in May 1941 and end in May 1945. This miniseries follows the highs and lows of World War II.
Greta, Charlotte, Wilhelm, Friedhelm and Viktor are all childhood friends. In 1941, some are sent to the front or hospitals in the German war effort. Some remain in Berlin for a portion or remainder of the war.
I thought this miniseries was well done; I got this on Netflix as a recommendation. I have seen others such as "Holocaust" and other world war 2 movies but never from the German point of view.
I liked the use of original black and white historical footage to setup the time frame. I had originally seen some of the same film footage during a documentary "The Third Reich". That documentary comes in three parts, two of which are "The Rise" and "The Fall".
Some make it through the war, others do not. I would recommend this to anyone who wants to watch world war 2 movies or miniseries.
Nicky's Family (2011)
The British Schindler
Nicky Winton now 104 years old is shown to be a key figure in the Kindertransport. This was an active program to move at risk children in the Czech republic, who are sure to be harmed by Hitler's regime changes.
He is able to save 669 children before the invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939. A lot of these children lost their parents in the concentration camps. Not surprisingly, most of the kids who were not able to get to England also perished in these camps.
There are interviews with the children he brought over and we see them with their families. Due to Sir Winton's actions, his family has grown to over 5,700 persons (survivor, children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren).
What struck me is how humble Sir Nicky Winton about all that he did during this operation. For a long time, these children did not know who was responsible for saving their lives, because of his humility.
There is a book being released about Sir Winton in May 2014, I hope the book is as good as this movie.
Very Moving Episode, one to make you cry
The show opens with a murder of an auction employee who dies of a gunshot wound. We are introduced to various suspects such as a white supremacist. We also meet an older Jewish watchmaker, Abraham Klein who put an old brooch at the victim's auction house.
We follow the investigation to find some very deplorable collections of items taken from the Holocaust. Mac follows this lead amongst others to an office dealing with white supremacists and Holocaust based items auctions. We begin to see another side to one of the suspects through the use of Shoah testimony.
The suspect is ultimately arrested and confirmed to be a Nazi hiding in the U.S. Mac views Shoah testimony about the good that his father did as a WW2 soldier helping a survivor. It ends with the return of the brooch to the rightful owner, who says Kaddish with Mac for those lost in her family.
This episode moved me at the end to tears. I would definitely recommend viewing it.
very well done...very moving...tissues necessary
I loved this episode after feeling compelled to watch it. This is after I avoided all news for the weekend prior to the actual ceremony at Ground Zero.
We open with Mac and his wife, Claire as they are getting ready for their day. He has planned a visit to the opera, something she has wanted to do with him. We see his commute with her on the bus to work, that is the last place we see them together. Mac is seen talking to his wife at 9:03 as the second plane hits the building. The sound was so strong, it felt incredibly real. This is the last time we see Claire, the cell phone just goes dead.
He meets with a retired firefighter friend, who lost his son that day. The father says he continues to have breakfast each Sunday at the same diner, to remember his son. He lies to Mac and states he has picked up his badge for the Brooklyn wall ceremony; Mac brings it to him when he realizes this. They show a ceremony at the Brooklyn wall with the pictures etched of the first responders etched into the walls. His firefighter friend has changed his mind and is present at the ceremony.
We also see Jo near the Pentagon that day, how Flack and Messer met downtown assisting an injured person and find out Lindsay got a ride on a Montana fire truck to help with the bucket brigade to remove debris. Adam reveals the truth that he did not see the coverage, since he slept late. Both doctors are seen in a storefront working on the injured and applying toe tags. Mac helps carry in a deceased firefighter and prays over the body.
He is now working at a different lab, helping to develop ways to identify the remains of the 1,000 plus who have not been identified yet. I liked his statement about closure in positively identifying the remains. It brings a reminder of this important fact.
The Help (2011)
A great ensemble cast, great story
I loved this story and looked forward to seeing the movie. Emma Stone is great as Skeeter Phelan, a young twenty-ish woman living in Jackson, Mississippi at the cusp of the civil rights movement. She is a graduate of Ole Miss and wants to be write professionally. She is surrounded by her Junior League friends, who all "work" on Junior League activities. Their days are all spent playing bridge and supervising their maids.
The Junior League is run by Hilly Holbrook. Hilly is very conservative and aware of staying within her own race. She speaks with her looks and tells the other friends in her circle how to handle "The Help".
Skeeter wants to write a book from the point of view of the various maids, both bad and good in book form. This poses a problem for all of them, considering it is a huge risk. Abilene is the first maid to tell her story, Minny Jackson soon follows. Once events unfold, many other maids join their group and tell all about working in Jackson during the early 1960s.
Once the book is published, all women of both races are reading the book. They are trying to see what the fuss is about and identify townspeople within each story. Minny Jackson puts a particular story as an insurance policy, so that Hilly will say it is not Jackson. This story is truly odd, funny and shocking.
Skeeter finds her way out of Jackson into a life she feels is best for her. Abilene, Minny and the other maids all deal with the aftermath of what happens in the book's publication.
Some small stuff may be in the movie or book but not enough to change the story. Those who know me also know how I follow the differences and have hated stories, when the movie cast is not connecting the same way I pictured it.
Sex and the City 2 (2010)
what a waste of film
i loved the original series and even liked first movie. the second movie, however, i felt is a total waste of time, film, etc. I got the impression that the actors were phoning it in, along with the writers etc.
Carrie is bored with marriage, something she fought for a long time. Charlotte is a stressed mom of two kids under the age of five. Samantha is dealing with menopause while dressing like a teenager. Miranda is a working mom and quits her high powered job at a law firm.
The travel to the Middle East was a silly plot line. To have them go to a foreign country and behave badly makes Americans look bad. Not all Americans are stupid, insipid travelers who just care about frivolity. We actually look to experience real culture and learn about the world.
well done presentation of history
I loved this documentary on HBO. It gives us a description of various peoples' ancestors who either survived or who were killed in this horrific fire. It is balanced in its presentation, in the sense it does not get political.
I would definitely watch this more than once. Make sure you have tissues handy since it is very sad. I follow this historical event, since my great grandfather worked for the city morgue in 1911. He told other family members stories about being there to take the deceased to the charity piers.
If you want to know more, read the book triangle the fire that changed America. It gives a deeper picture of the 1909 strikes, fire and its aftermath.
In the Name of the Father (1993)
Very moving film
This film brought much passion and anger in me the first time I saw it. Gerry Conlon is arrested, tried and convicted of an IRA bombing in 1974. By all means, he was and is not perfect. He has robbed a prostitute, he was not always respectful of his family. That does not make him or his friends IRA bombers.
He spends 15 years in prison, as does some of his friends. His father, Guisseppie dies while in prison. He had been ill prior to all of the 1974 occurrences. When Gerry is finally freed, he is older, different, more grown up. How could you not expect a major change, given all he experienced? The soundtrack is very good, especially to someone who grew up with Irish freedom music. My father taught how bad policies were and I took a class to learn more about it. He always had a name for the English government aka "the bloody Brits". He always had respect for the people, not blaming them for a bad government.
The American (2010)
Visually fine....lack of plot
Usually, I can escape into a movie and feel a part of it. However, this was not the case due to a very uninteresting movie. The scenery of Italy is visually pleasing. George Clooney does not have a huge range of emotions for the bulk of the film. He looks glum a lot(snooze). He tries to look lustful with the hooker, Clara(again, snooze). The hooker with the heart of gold is so clichéd, especially when they meet outside of her place of business. When they go out on a date, I thought some action might finally occur. I was sorely disappointed that was not to be the case. If you want to see Italy on film and enjoy, see something else. I would not waste your time or money.