I highly recommend to each of you that you take the time to rent the 5 disks (or just buy it right away) of Band of Brothers. It is an HBO miniseries that somehow involves Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg … oh shoot, I’ll just steal from IMDB:
This is the story of “E” Easy Company, 506th Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division from their initial training starting in 1942 to the end of World War II. They parachuted behind enemy lines in the early hours of D-Day in support of the landings at Utah beach, participated in the liberation of Carentan and again parachuted into action during Operation Market Garden. They also liberated a concentration camp and were the first to enter Hitler’s mountain retreat in Berchtesgarten. A fascinating tale of comradeship that is, in the end, a tale of ordinary men who did extraordinary things.
Back to me, this series, consisting of about ten, one hour episodes all based on the same group of characters, is going down as one of my all time favorite movies (well, a 10 hour long movie). The character development is amazing and at the end of each episode I find myself envying the men for their sense of fulfillment and the bonds that they develop with their band of brothers.
I’ve had a World War II/Holocaust interest for several years now, so perhaps my love of this series feeds from that. My Grandpa was actually a POW in WWII, so I always find myself wondering where he was being marched to as all of the events in these movies take place. My Grandma was also in the Army in WWII, but she spent her time somewhere in the Pacific. She was German (not sure which generation in America) and Jewish, so I feel a special bond with the Holocaust stories. Of course I think it’s difficult for anyone not to feel something for the survivors and victims of the Holocaust.
I’m putting together a list of movies whose historical events take place in chronological order, a sort of movie history class with one rule, I can only put movies I see on the list. I’ll admit that movies are probably not the most factual way to learn history, but they sure work better than reading awful high school history books! I’ll probably share other historically based movies as the blog entries go on, but here’s a few of my favorites on my list for WWII:
Band of Brothers
Saving Private Ryan
Ann Frank: The Whole Story
Sophie Scholl: The Final Days
Other unrelated TV series worth renting:
Felicity : The ultimate college/relationship story that makes a bigger impact in DVD form (rather than watching it on a futon with 6 other girls in the room commenting on it after watching Dawson’s Creek). I have successfully gotten several people (men and women) addicted to this series.
Arrested Development : Hilarious!
Weeds: A day in the life of a mother who also is a drug dealer, hilarious.
Dexter: A day in the life of a serial killer.
From the Earth to the Moon: Also from Tom Hanks, a story of the Apollo missions.
Well, that should keep you busy for a while! 😉