Joseph Vilsmaier's two-part TV movie focuses on the tragic events surrounding the sinking of the Wilhelm Gustloff, a German passenger ship, at the end of World War II. On 30 January 1945, Captain Hellmuth Kehding was in charge of the ship, evacuating wounded soldiers and civilians trapped by the Red Army. Soon after leaving the harbor of Danzig, it was hit by three torpedoes from the Soviet submarine and sank in less than an hour...Written by
The German ship MV Wilhelm Gustloff was built by the Blohm & Voss shipyards in 1937 and served in various roles:cruise ship, hospital ship, floating barracks for naval personnel and finally evacuees transport ship. See more »
I must admit I was looking forward to see this dramatization of the sinking of MS Gustloff, and the film is well done in most aspects, but what's worse is that there are too much drama, just like with Titanic. This is a problem since this of course this is a true story, which is told up quite closely. However, this just seems overloaded, to that extent that vi stop believing. like with Titanic.
It's simply too much. The drama is out of control completely overblown and so is the happy ending. There is really no happy ending when 9000 people die in the worst ship catastrophe in the world, but still there are some amazing survival stories here, which are just amazing in them selves.
A good tip: You'll enjoy this 3 hour long film more if you watch the documentary which is following the DVD before you see the actual film. Then you'll understand that much if this REALLY is true, and only some minor changes in the connection with the people are made as a dramatization. If you do that, you will have a much bigger appreciation for the film, which otherwise really is almost too unbelievable.
But production value is good, and so is the film craftsmanship. The manuscript and the many plots and persons in this is what's killing of what could have been a good movie. It ends up bing mediocre.
A 5 out of 10 only when you see th film. A 7 out of 10 if you watch the documentary on the DVD before the actual film!
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