US News “Schindler's List”: Horrors of the Holocaust
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In 1993, Steven Spielberg brought his most important film to the cinema with “Schindler's List”.
In 1993, Steven Spielberg released his most important film, “Schindler's List”.
The triumph of “Schindler's List” lay in the sensitivity, in the size, then in the toughness, in the brutality, in the cautiousness and in the intimacy, in everything that was necessary to approach the Shoah. Nothing seemed suggestive. And the few scenes that were actually supposed to show humor were actually funny.
When Steven Spielberg was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit in 1998 for the film by the then Federal President Roman Herzog, the director spoke of the most important award he had ever received.
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27 years later, “Schindler's List” has the same effect as in 1993. It is not the fame - seven Oscars, including the one for best director - that will be remembered, but it is the countless scenes in which Spielberg depicts the horrors of the Holocaust brings to the canvas, be it direct or symbolic.
The girl in the red coat. The Nazi playing the piano during the shootings in the Warsaw Ghetto. Amon Göth's “I forgive you”. The boy escaping into the sewer of the labor camp, classical music in his ear. “There is more to it than that.” Itzhak Stern's walk past the executed room boy. And in the whole film there is only one time to see Hitler (on a portrait photo in the background), and only one shot with the Hitler salute.
At the end of the day, the director allows his main character, the industrialist Oskar Schindler (Liam Neeson), to collapse. There are critics who dismiss Schindler's "I could have done more" as undue self-indignity; but perhaps Schindler's thought is precisely the bitter thought that would have occurred to anyone who has finally recognized the extent of their willingness to help in their situation.
The "Shoa Foundation", founded by Spielberg in 1994, continues to collect contemporary witness reports from Holocaust survivors.
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