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Schindler's List [1993 film] (1993)

by Steven Spielberg, Steven Zaillian (Screenwriter)

Other authors: Embeth Davidtz (Actor), Ralph Fiennes (Actor), Caroline Goodall (Actor), Thomas Keneally (Original Book), Ben Kingsley (Actor)5 more, Branko Lustig (Producer), Gerald R. Molen (Producer), Liam Neeson (Actor), Jonathan Sagalle (Actor), John Williams (Composer)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
7761629,146 (4.48)40
The story of a Catholic war profiteer, Oskar Schindler, who risked his life and went bankrupt in order to save more than 1,000 Jews from certain death in concentration camps. He employed Jews in his crockery factory manufacturing goods for the German army. At the same time he tries to stay solvent with the help of a Jewish accountant and negotiates business with a vicious Nazi commandant who enjoys shooting Jews as target practice from the balcony of his villa that overlooks the prison camp he commands.… (more)
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» See also 40 mentions

English (9)  Italian (4)  Spanish (3)  All languages (16)
Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
Nothing more can be added to the powerful reviews from the original release.
We did not allow our children to attend R-rated films in their younger years, but we had our teen-agers watch this one at home, because of the important historical impact. ( )
  librisissimo | Jul 29, 2021 |
A WWII German businessman saves his slaves' lives.

I don't know what people see in this sort of movie. Okay, this one in particular is shot really well and all that, and I was able to appreciate the craftsmanship. But the show-people-something-horrible-that-really-happened story just seems so... easy.

Concept: F
Story: C
Characters: C
Dialog: B
Pacing: C
Cinematography: A
Special effects/design: A
Acting: A
Music: B

Enjoyment: C

GPA: 2.6/4 ( )
  comfypants | Jan 27, 2016 |
World War 2
  BooksInMirror | Feb 19, 2024 |
In German-occupied Poland during World War II, Oskar Schindler gradually becomes concerned for his Jewish workforce after witnessing their persecution by the Nazi Germans. (IMDb)
  DrLed | Nov 4, 2017 |
NO OF PAGES: 0 SUB CAT I: Holocaust SUB CAT II: Anti-Semitism SUB CAT III: DESCRIPTION: Steven Spielberg had a banner year in 1993. He scored one of his biggest commercial hits that summer with the mega-hit Jurassic Park, but it was the artistic and critical triumph of Schindler's List that Spielberg called "the most satisfying experience of my career." Adapted from the best-selling book by Thomas Keneally and filmed in Poland with an emphasis on absolute authenticity, Spielberg's masterpiece ranks among the greatest films ever made about the Holocaust during World War II. It's a film about heroism with an unlikely hero at its center--Catholic war profiteer Oskar Schindler (Liam Neeson), who risked his life and went bankrupt to save more than 1,000 Jews from certain death in concentration camps.
By employing Jews in his crockery factory manufacturing goods for the German army, Schindler ensures their survival against terrifying odds. At the same time, he must remain solvent with the help of a Jewish accountant (Ben Kingsley) and negotiate business with a vicious, obstinate Nazi commandant (Ralph Fiennes) who enjoys shooting Jews as target practice from the balcony of his villa overlooking a prison camp. Schindler's List gains much of its power not by trying to explain Schindler's motivations, but by dramatizing the delicate diplomacy and determination with which he carried out his generous deeds.

As a drinker and womanizer who thought nothing of associating with Nazis, Schindler was hardly a model of decency; the film is largely about his transformation in response to the horror around him. Spielberg doesn't flinch from that horror, and the result is a film that combines remarkable humanity with abhorrent inhumanity--a film that functions as a powerful history lesson and a testament to the resilience of the human spirit in the context of a living nightmare.NOTES: The original DVD donated by Lloyd & Jami Cupiccia, then edited by Gary Springer. SUBTITLE: Sexually explicit material edited out.
  BeitHallel | Mar 1, 2011 |
Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
Despite its seven Oscars I doubt that Schindler’s List will survive its season either as a memorable film or as a comment on the concentration camps, for the evil that Spielberg tries to portray lies beyond his imagination...

Except to the people whose lives he saved, Schindler made no difference to the outcome of the Holocaust. But the film’s aim is to show that he made a huge difference, for he is meant (like Spencer Tracy at Black Rock, etc.) to prove that remarkable individuals can outsmart evil. What then of the others? Did they die by the millions simply because they weren’t clever enough themselves or lucky enough to find a Schindler of their own?
 
The relationship between Schindler and Stern is developed by Spielberg with enormous subtlety. At the beginning of the war, Schindler wants only to make money, and at the end he wants only to save "his" Jews. We know that Stern understands this. But there is no moment when Schindler and Stern bluntly state what is happening, perhaps because to say certain things aloud could result in death...

The French author Flaubert once wrote that he disliked Uncle Tom's Cabin because the author was constantly preaching against slavery. "Does one have to make observations about slavery?" he asked. "Depict it; that's enough." And then he added, "An author in his book must be like God in the universe, present everywhere and visible nowhere." That would describe Spielberg, the author of this film. He depicts the evil of the Holocaust, and he tells an incredible story of how it was robbed of some of its intended victims. He does so without the tricks of his trade, the directorial and dramatic contrivances that would inspire the usual melodramatic payoffs. Spielberg is not visible in this film. But his restraint and passion are present in every shot.
added by SnootyBaronet | editChicago Sun-Times, Roger Ebert
 
After all this time, I'd almost forgotten how acerbic a lot of it is, with little shocks of black comedy that take far more chances with the audience's undependable (cf. Oakland) reactions than is Spielberg's norm. He usually relies on composer John Williams to spell out everything's meaning as schmaltzily as possible, but Williams's work here is uncommonly sophisticated... You also have to admire how Spielberg and his screenwriter, Steven Zaillan, stress the Final Solution's bureaucratic methodology. Each new enormity is signalled by petty officials setting up open-air desks and arranging their stamp-pads.

Purely as a piece of filmmaking, the terrifying liquidation of the Krakow ghetto is probably the greatest sequence Spielberg has directed, topping even Saving Private Ryan's opening Omaha Beach bloodbath. Yet in both cases, one's perhaps already self-congratulatory sense of vicariously experiencing What It Was Probably Like gives way to a distracting recognition that this is one heck of a set-piece. Just how do you navigate the difference in priorities between "Never again" and "Right up there with D.W. Griffith"?
added by SnootyBaronet | editThe American Prospect, Tom Carson
 

» Add other authors (36 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Steven Spielbergprimary authorall editionscalculated
Zaillian, StevenScreenwritermain authorall editionsconfirmed
Davidtz, EmbethActorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Fiennes, RalphActorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Goodall, CarolineActorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Keneally, ThomasOriginal Booksecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kingsley, BenActorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lustig, BrankoProducersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Molen, Gerald R.Producersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Neeson, LiamActorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sagalle, JonathanActorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Williams, JohnComposersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Schindler's List the movie is neither the novel, Schindler's List (also published as Schindler's Ark) nor Schindler's List / Piano solos. Despite similar titles, the three media are separate works and should not be combined with each other. Only the movie Schindler's List should be combined here.
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The story of a Catholic war profiteer, Oskar Schindler, who risked his life and went bankrupt in order to save more than 1,000 Jews from certain death in concentration camps. He employed Jews in his crockery factory manufacturing goods for the German army. At the same time he tries to stay solvent with the help of a Jewish accountant and negotiates business with a vicious Nazi commandant who enjoys shooting Jews as target practice from the balcony of his villa that overlooks the prison camp he commands.

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Adapted from the best-selling book by Thomas Keneally and filmed in Poland with an emphasis on absolute authenticity, Spielberg's masterpiece ranks among the greatest films ever made about the Holocaust during World War II. It's a film about heroism with an unlikely hero at its center--Catholic war profiteer Oskar Schindler (Liam Neeson), who risked his life and went bankrupt to save more than 1,000 Jews from certain death in concentration camps.
By employing Jews in his crockery factory manufacturing goods for the German army, Schindler ensures their survival against terrifying odds. At the same time, he must remain solvent with the help of a Jewish accountant (Ben Kingsley) and negotiate business with a vicious, obstinate Nazi commandant (Ralph Fiennes) who enjoys shooting Jews as target practice from the balcony of his villa overlooking a prison camp. Schindler's List gains much of its power not by trying to explain Schindler's motivations, but by dramatizing the delicate diplomacy and determination with which he carried out his generous deeds.

As a drinker and womanizer who thought nothing of associating with Nazis, Schindler was hardly a model of decency; the film is largely about his transformation in response to the horror around him. Spielberg doesn't flinch from that horror, and the result is a film that combines remarkable humanity with abhorrent inhumanity--a film that functions as a powerful history lesson and a testament to the resilience of the human spirit in the context of a living nightmare. --Jeff Shannon

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