Saving Private Ryan

Discussions on WW2 and pre-WW2 related movies, games, military art and other fiction.
James Patrick
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Post by James Patrick » 05 Aug 2002 19:48

I don't really have a problem with other people having an anti-American/anti-Hollywood bias towards movies. I could live without 95% of the stuff that comes out of Hollywood. It just baffles me when I see some people on WWII Military/Wargame forums bash SPR as if it has 0 redeemable value as a warfilm and that it doesn't even compare to some of the more mediocre warfilms out there. I too have never seen combat, but I once read an article in Newsweek where a Russian soldier who was in Chechyna called Steven Spielberg a genius and the only film director who understood war. One of the few whose opinion matters.

Caldric
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Post by Caldric » 05 Aug 2002 23:32

To be absolutely candid, I think they have a problem with it portraying American's. That sounds crazy, however, they seem to bash everything and anything where American troops are a part of it. From the stupidity of some stating that America was not needed in WWII, or that they were the worst troops in the war. :roll: Any chance to take a shot at them, and if there is a movie that goes against those unfounded misunderstandings then it must be garbage.

I hereby stamp it Ameriphobia.

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Lawrence Tandy
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Post by Lawrence Tandy » 07 Aug 2002 08:11

This is true Caldric, I am mildly guilty but I also know that all the anti- America stuff is BS. Alot of peoples opinions are formed on how the Americans have rightly or wrongly conducted their policies in the last 30 yrs or so and are automatically bisased. Others get pissed because their country is ignored and gets no credit for their participation in the world wars(like mine), at the expense of American or British histories neglecting them. Still, you have to be realistic, and the USA made Major contributions to the war. The soldiers were also quite good when blooded...how well did the Brits and Soviets do during their first introductions to world war 2? The world may have also been a rougher place without the US to bear the brunt of the fighting against the Japanese, not all of it but they did do the majority of it. I know both Brits and Aussies fought hard there as well, but wow well would the Brits have done against the full might Germany and Japan...or would they let all of their Asian colonies fall to the japanese Empire? Also a possibility that the Soviets could have had the Japanese knocking at their back door(old scores). Hence no multitudes of hard core Siberian soldiers counter-attacking in the winter of 41'. Maybe my arguments will be picked apart, but I have noticed alot of Anti-American sentiment here and at the military history forum.

Respectfully,
Lawrence Tandy

Caldric
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Post by Caldric » 07 Aug 2002 17:20

Well I want pick at it, I think what you are saying is very true, and I have never made the claim the U.S. won the war. There are a lot of American's that think that, but it is not unnatural for a population to blow up their involvement of something like WWII.

I think the greatest contribution the Canadian's gave was the Battle of the Atlantic. That is not saying they did not do anything on the ground, but if I am not mistaken they had the 3rd largest navy in the Alliance? And the vast majority was maintaining the supplies to Europe. What I have read about Canadian ground warfare it has almost always been positive. There were many, or at least some American's that went to Canada to fight before U.S. entered the war. U.S. Military mainly won the Pacific, but Australian did some of the worse fighting and the UK and minor allies like India (talk about no credit).

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Lawrence Tandy
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Post by Lawrence Tandy » 08 Aug 2002 01:39

You are right, but the Aussies do get credit...at least on the forum. And I meant Americans and British as a country, as people in here tend to be more knowledgeable. Canada had several fierce ground battles in Italy,Normandy and holland, but those Aussies did too, and in inhuman conditions in the Pacific. Of course I am familiar with Tobruk as well. I must admit that other than hongkong with the Canucks I have not much knowledge of India, but the Canadians said they were ferocious fighters. I don't know a whole lot about the Pacific theater except for what the Marines did there...and of course the bigger battles.

Lawrence Tandy

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Aufklarung
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Post by Aufklarung » 08 Aug 2002 03:19

Lawrence Tandy wrote: Also a possibility that the Soviets could have had the Japanese knocking at their back door(old scores).



The USSR could have left the Toronto Maple leafs there and wouldn't have had to worry about Japan. Zhukov fed the Japs their hats at Nomonhan Mongolia in '39. We're talking 90% KIA in some Jap Battalions!! Japan wisely sought a non-aggression pact with Uncle Joe in '41, which was signed on the same trip as the tri-partite pact with Germany and Italy!!

Otherwise you guys are right about the US War movie industry as a whole and I am forced to agree with you about the shock effect produced by SPR. I have been shot at the odd time and nothing steels and sickens at the same time like incoming.

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Aufklarung
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Post by Aufklarung » 08 Aug 2002 03:22

.......also in the spirit of correctness; I modify all use of "Jap(s)" to read Japanese. So sorry! :D

Caldric
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Post by Caldric » 08 Aug 2002 04:58

I once heard what the Indian's may have lacked in tactical knowledge they made up for in spirit.

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Lawrence Tandy
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Post by Lawrence Tandy » 08 Aug 2002 07:53

Aufklarung, thanks for the knowledge. Saves me from putting my foot in my mouth in the future...at least a little. :)

Lawrence Tandy

Kephra
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Post by Kephra » 08 Aug 2002 08:41

Here an review of SPR from german perspective:

http://home.t-online.de/home/d.nix/film/e-ryan.htm

You can also look in the mail-section of this page to get more discussion about this topic.

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Lawrence Tandy
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Post by Lawrence Tandy » 08 Aug 2002 18:26

Thanks, very cool site.

Cheers,
Lawrence Tandy

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Lawrence Tandy
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Post by Lawrence Tandy » 09 Aug 2002 00:53

To get back on topic, I have read several on several forums and sites times that people were miffed that the german soldiers had shaved head as so to appear to be skinhead stereotypes etc. From what I learned, this was not an uncommon practice at the time but not because of any racial reason. It was common that after a certain amount of war experience, German soldiers learned to keep their hair close cropped to combat lice, especially units with a great deal of experience on the Russian Front. As always, I could be wrong but this sounds very plausible. Plus I've read nothing where having a shaved head was a necessity to show you were a true Nazi, German, Aryan or whatever. I think that look came in the 70's and was adopted by Punks and white supremicists. Please tell me if you think otherwise.

LT

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Lawrence Tandy
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Post by Lawrence Tandy » 09 Aug 2002 00:54

One source is Fighting in Hell, written by a German General and US translator both of whom I cannot recall. Another is in Siegfried Knappe's book"Soldat."

LT

Roland
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Post by Roland » 09 Aug 2002 13:27

Lawrence,
You are absolutely right!

Regards!

James Patrick
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Post by James Patrick » 09 Aug 2002 16:23

This is just my guess, but I just think that was the haircut the actors showed up with. German soldiers hair, compared to todays style, was worn pretty long. You don't see one German soldier with long hair probably because the film makers didn't want to wait for it to grow out. Unlike Blackhawk Down, you notice that all the American actors showed up with the same haircut before filming and wore it the same after the film (Vin Diesel, Adam Goldberg, Stephen Speilberg, Matt Damon). Just my guess, but I could be wrong.

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