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Schindlers List - Movie Review Example

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Released in 1993, the Academy Award winning "Schindler's List" was a biographical venture from the stable of ace director Steven Spielberg. The plot revolves around the story of Oskar Schindler, a Sudeten-German Catholic who finds himself in the midst of the residues of war, as a result of his business ambitions…
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Download file to see previous pages World War II has just begun and Polish army has been torn apart by Germany. Oskar Schindler, brilliantly portrayed by Liam Neeson, is a sadly unsuccessful businessman who arrives in Crakow hoping he may make use of the sudden increase in free manpower resulting from the population of the concentration camps, to set up a manufacturing unit for direct supply of goods to the German Army. Schindler is a member of the Nazi league, and is well aware of the right strings to pull and the right pockets to contribute to. Schindler soon gets around to acquiring a factory for production of army kits as is his plan.
Ben Kingsley plays Itzhak Stern, "a man with the face and manner of a Talmudic scholar" (Steven Zaillian, Schindler's List) who is a functionary in the local Judenrat (Jewish Council) with contacts in the Jewish business community in the Ghetto. On his insistence, they agree to loan Schindler the money he needs. And in return they get a small share of products produced by the new company for trade on the black market. Work begins in Schindler's factory. Stern takes care of the matters of administration. In a well thought move, he suggests to Schindler that it would make more sense for the fledgling factory to depend on Jewish manpower as opposed to Poles. One of the benefits of work in Schindler's factory is that the employees are allowed outside the ghetto. Now Stern, in his capacity, ensures that as many of them as possible are reported as "essential" to the Nazi bureaucracy. In a subtle shade, we come to know that although Schindler is aware of what is going on, he does not try to curb this. A very visible influence of the pre war take on the economics of successful business activity is evident in the portrayal of the running of Schindler's factory. The choice of workers also displays this influence, given the preference for Jews. This is a consequence of the pretty convenient fact that Jews are paid less, resulting in savings for the factory, although as the movie progresses, it becomes quite evident that profit making took second priority in the mind of at least one of the two men. In a fresh angle to the exploitative labor practices, the Jews themselves are paid nothing; all the wages go to the Reich.
The movie gives us a fresh and at times depressing insight into the atrocious living conditions of the people. The Jews in the camps, as in the town are subjected to all kinds of torturous treatment. This is very well highlighted in one scene where Schindler enters a hotel, with a very suggestive sign saying ""No Jews or Dogs Allowed". Another very appealing scene shows the initial roll call and checkup of the inmates where they are paraded naked, man, woman and child alike. In some editions of the movie, this scene has been removed. Following airing of a largely uncut edition of the movie on NBC, Tom Coburn, then a congressman, stated that by airing the film, NBC had brought television "to an all-time low, with full-frontal nudity, violence and profanity", adding that airing the film was an insult to "decent-minded individuals everywhere"(Associated Press). Under fire from fellow Republicans as well as from Democrats, Coburn apologized for his outrage. Such insights have served in creating awareness in the people about the objectionable conditions brought about by war and its ravages. Politically these incidences, as has the war itself, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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Schindlers List

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