Beevor on war movies

Sparky

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Sort of part and parcel with the state of Hollywood in general. In general 99% of todays movies? They suck. The Stalingrad story he related is a perfect example. The last I saw was Dunkirk, and about half way through the movie, about half way over the Atlantic I decided that listening to the baby screaming and its hotter than hell mother struggling to calm it was more entertaining than watching that piece of shit movie.

Best war movie ever? Now that is tough question. Hard to vote against Das Boot.
 

Vinnie

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Science fiction and fantasy films have always said more about he state of things than historical dramas.
Films ate made to make money.
 

Ric of The LBC

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Sort of part and parcel with the state of Hollywood in general. In general 99% of todays movies? They suck. The Stalingrad story he related is a perfect example. The last I saw was Dunkirk, and about half way through the movie, about half way over the Atlantic I decided that listening to the baby screaming and its hotter than hell mother struggling to calm it was more entertaining than watching that piece of shit movie.

Best war movie ever? Now that is tough question. Hard to vote against Das Boot.
All movies follow this formula. http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/culturebox/2013/07/hollywood_and_blake_snyder_s_screenwriting_book_save_the_cat.html
 

Sparky

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Best or ones that we like?
best ones. Ones we like often don't mean best. I mean seriously, a perfect example, who doesn't absolutely love Cross of Iron, however who in their right mind might consider it best. I am a huge Peckinpah fan but jesus christ he must have been hitting the booze, blow and broads Sparky style by the end of that movie. Urggg.

None... zero patch on the book it was based upon. Which I would rate as as one of the best ww2 BOOKS of alltime.
 

Michael Dorosh

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I don't think I've 3vrr watched Cross of Iron.
The book is better, but the movie isn't bad mostly because while it does have some set piece battle scenes (by Sam freaking Peckinpah), the story focuses on the characters (some of whom were based loosely on real life soldiers the author of the book had served with).
 

Michael Dorosh

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I did not know that there was a Cross Of Iron Book. Gonna pick that up.
It's available in English both as The Willing Flesh (translated from the original German title) or as Cross of Iron. Author is Willi Heinrich. Lots of reprints out there.
 

Sparky

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I did not know that there was a Cross Of Iron Book. Gonna pick that up.
definitely do get a copy, you can find them easily in most any used book store. Heinrich was an officer in the 101st Jäger and a 41-45 survivor of the Russian Front. So while the book is fiction, though supposedly characters were based on real life members of the unit, it is still pretty much non-fiction in its exploration of the men who fought on the Eastern Front. The movie was obviously based upon the book and even the God of cinema that was Peckinpah couldn't do justice to the characters that Heinrich introduced in the book. They really had much more depth in the book than the movie Stransky was even more a twat and his motivations for hating Steiner made more clear, Steiner more enigmatic and interesting, and my favorite part of the book. The philosophical interplay between Col. Brandt and Cpt. Kiesel
 

Ric of The LBC

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best ones. Ones we like often don't mean best. .
Exactly. Love Kelly's Hero's but is it a Best? Love Mr. Roberts, but is it a war movie?

Favs:
12 o'clock High
Stalag 17
The Longest Day
Horse Soldiers
Kelly's Heros
Run Silent, Run Deep.
Battleground.
Letters from Iwo Jima

Never seen Cross of Iron
 

holdit

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How about this...most educational movie about a battle i.e. the one that gives you the best sense of what happened and why. I think my vote would have to go to Gettysburg. Top Turkey in that same category would probably go to Battle of the Bulge.
 

Michael Dorosh

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How about this...most educational movie about a battle i.e. the one that gives you the best sense of what happened and why. I think my vote would have to go to Gettysburg. Top Turkey in that same category would probably go to Battle of the Bulge.
All the old epics tended to be that way - Tora, Tora, Tora was one, also A Bridge Too Far, The Longest Day, etc. They were designed to be told in vignettes for exactly that reason. My Top Turkey is STALINGRAD (1993) which while not a bad look at a small unit of soldiers, really gave only flashes of insight into what the battle was actually about. One film that managed to both focus on a small group of characters and describe the overall battle (albeit fictionalized) was THE BRIDGE AT REMAGEN.
 

Michael Dorosh

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Missed this the first time, great link. I've taken some 3-month courses on novel writing, and there is a lot of 'formula' there too, but good writers will find ways to transcend that. There is nothing wrong with sticking to the formula, at least a little, if it makes audiences happy, but I tend to avoid 'blockbuster' films since I'm not one of those who is fascinated only by snappy patter and things blowing up. I nevertheless liked the two GI JOE films, for example, because I was a fan of the comic books in the 1980s and enjoyed the characters, but found the last two STAR WARS episodes tedious, mostly because I think they were indeed written with obvious adherence to form instead of coherent plot.

For what it's worth, the TV Tropes site ( https://tvtropes.org/ ) is great at deconstructing popular films, TV series, books, etc.

For example, The Longest Day:

https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Film/TheLongestDay
 

Michael Dorosh

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Top Turkey - Anzio
I actually bought a copy of Anzio, I watch it - and Battle of the Bulge - the same way I would watch Plan 9 From Outer Space. They're so very, very bad that they become good. Best part of Anzio is the walk through the Royal Palace of Caserta in the opening credits.
 
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