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Saving Private Ryan (DVD)

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      16.08.2014 06:44
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      A gripping film with a brilliant story

      Saving Private Ryan is one of the best war films ever made in my opinion. It is made sparing no detail, and the story is lovely.

      I first watched Saving Private Ryan when i was in school, some years ago now, where we had to do a lot of course work about the films meaning and roles of the characters, which for me was very enjoyable because i really enjoy the film. I actually got an A in that piece too!

      The film was released in 1998 and won five Oscars! There are many fantastic actors in this film, including Matt Damon and Tom Hanks, but all of the films main characters play their parts very very well!

      The film is about a small group of soldiers that have been given the task of finding private Ryan. His brothers have all been killed in action, but to save their mother any more grief, the leading officers decide to find Private Ryan and send him home. That in itself makes it a rally good film. Along the way, the group of soldiers encounter several problems, including their men dying and arguing between themselves.

      In the film, you see the men take the Omaha beach, which is basically a blood shed, but it is really good how it happens, and i can imagine it to be similar to what happened in the real wars. The film has been directed to perfection, one of Steven Speilburg's finest films in my opinion.

      All in all, I highly recommend this film for anyone who enjoys a gripping war film. The film is dirt cheap to buy too with it being so old. It is available on Amazon for £2 or £3 including delivery and it is more than worth that.

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      20.07.2011 22:32
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      One of the greatest films ever made and if you havent seen it, buy it!

      Saving private ryan is one of the greatest war films with one of the most wonderfully shot scenes you will ever see (omaha beach). The whole cast works perfectly in this film and there is not one weak link which is incredibly rare in films. From start to finish this film is superior to so many war films and tom hanks rightfully won so many accolades for his performance as captain john miller. The film is true to world war 2 and where many films are very innacurate, saving private ryan sticks true to the horror of the great war and worked closely with survivors so that the film would not be another film people criticise. From the soundtrack to make up to direction and actors, everything about this film is amazing and if you have not seen this then you must buy it right now! One of the greatest films ever made.

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        15.07.2011 11:13
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        Powerful war film about the quest to save the last of 4 brothers

        War films are everywhere, and they show no sign of abating. With Saving Private Ryan, director Steven Spielberg did something rather different with his opening scenes, and made them less about the main plot and more about the depiction of war, opening up with nearly half an hour of violence and bloodshed that attempts to give us an insight as to the sheer luck you'd have needed to make it onto the beaches of Normandy in the first place. Even Tarantino was shocked by it, describing it as terrifying, and this coming from a man keen to include as much gore and openness as possible in his films.

        Yet despite these opening scenes, the main film's plot centres around a small platoon sent to retrieve the only surviving brother of four from deep within French soil, right in the heart of the fighting. It's the characters in this platoon that make this film what it is, and their reluctant acceptance of their mission as they plow across fields and through towns, avoiding and defeating groups of the enemy on their way to find one man.
        Leading the platoon is Captain John Miller, played excellently by Tom Hanks, and he has a crew of instant recognition behind him, including Vin Diesel, Ed Burns, Adam Goldberg, Tom Sizemore, Giovanni Ribisi and Barry Pepper. They are also joined by Jeremy Edwards as a reluctant translator. The group work very well together, showing the camaradery a group needs to have to survive in a war torn country they're not familiar with.

        What I liked about the film was the way it doesn't just deal with the battle scenes as if it comes naturally to those involved. While I don't suppose for a moment killing people comes easily to anyone, even in a war situation, it mustn't be forgotten that the majority of these soldiers sent abroad to fight for their country did so at the last minute, being trained up quickly with a necessity to be sent to the front line. Many saw no combat before being killed, others wanted it to be over so they could get back home to their day job. This is portrayed quite well in the film, with many of the platoon talking about what they do back home. It's also impressive to see the reality of combat, particularly one knife fight towards the end of the film, showing that the people on both sides of the war are in the same situation, struggling to fight for their lives, and willing to fight desperately to do so.
        It's a long film, added to by the very long introductory scene which sets the mood and wakes you up, giving you a good chunk of time with seeing the devastation to human lives that the war could do, before showing the humanity of trying to save one man so a mother doesn't lose all four sons at the same time. It's a small mercy, but one that is played on heavily and shows that within all the violence and death, an ounce of humanity can have a lasting and thoughtful result. The soldiers in the platoon question the decision regularly, wondering why all of their lives should be risked for one individual, but they do as they are bid nonetheless. The final scene of the film is one that highlights the importance of a legacy, and this is to show you why it's worth it.

        I thought this a marvellously presented and acted film. All involved did a sterling job, and I have been amazed each time I have watched it. Hanks has gone on to spend a decent amount of his time with portraying the events of various wars, mainly the Second World War, where this is set. TV series such as Band of Brothers and The Pacific show the brutalities but also the harsh realities outside of the war at the time, and Hanks has his stamp on them. Here, his acting role is excellent, and it's quite a surprise when you find out what he does at home. The others also support very well, with a nod going to Matt Damon as Ryan.
        Spielberg controls things very well indeed, making sure things don't drag but also giving us an open and arresting insight into the horrors of war. It's not for the faint hearted in many ways, although there are more powerful and violent films out there. Saving Private Ryan opens up a lot of the terrifying nature, but beyond the first half an hour, nothing much else is likely to shock you quite the same. Expertly directed, he deserved to pick up an Academy Award for Best Director, and the film certainly deserved all the awards it has gathered. Highly recommended.

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        08.05.2010 14:24
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        Good even for those who don't 'do' war films.

        ***Saving Private Ryan***

        I was looking forward to watching The Pacific after seeing the billboards everywhere, because I loved Band of Brothers. Yet, a few weeks in and it is a great disappointment. So, I decided to watch this to remind myself of Spielberg at his best. I have family members who served in the Second World War (as I am sure many people have) and have listened to their stories, but it is watching this film that brings home the terror that ordinary young men had to face and I think it should be compulsory viewing for all young people; especially those that play Call of Duty or other war games. (It drives me mad to see young kids, play these games as if war is all about glory and winning - without the realisation of what is actually involved)

        ***The Story***

        The film opens with the allied invasion of Normandy, focusing on a group of soldiers led by Captain Miller (Tom Hanks) as they try to secure a beachhead . During the invasion two brothers are killed. It transpires that a third brother was also killed in New Guinea. Their mother, Mrs Ryan is due to receive all three telegrams on the same day. It transpires that a fourth brother Private James Ryan is actually still serving in France. The United States Army Chief of Staff, takes the decision to ease the suffering of this family, by finding Private Ryan and bringing him home to safety. Captain Miller is chosen to head a team of 8 men to go and search for this soldier, even though this means the men will face great personal risk in doing so. The film follows their journey and struggle as they set off to find him (some of the team have personal reservations about the risk they have been asked to take) and some great battle scenes ensue.

        ***A Few Facts...***

        This film was penned by Robert Rodat and directed by Steven Spielberg. It won 5 oscars and was a resounding financial success returning $481 million on a budget of $90 million. It also took in $44 million in dvd sales alone. It also received praise from veterans for its realism in depicting authentic D Day battle scenes. The Omaha Beach scene cost $11 million to film and used up to 1000 extras, 20 or so of whom were amputees.

        ***Why the 5 Oscars Then?***

        This film succeeds on so many levels. First let's talk about the action. The opening scene is about 25 minutes in duration, as is the final battle scene. This time never drags and every second carefully depicts the reality of war and what those young soldiers must have faced. The violence isn't gratuitious - it is what it is - the reality of watching friends being blown apart, while trying to hold it all together. This is stark reality at its grimmest. The film just doesn't make you feel the soldiers fear and pain - it makes you believe you ARE there. I must point out that some of these scenes are distressing and they are not for the faint hearted. The camera work is handheld and jumpy which adds to the chaotic feel. There are some good underwater shots and silence is used to good effect to simulate a kind of shell shock moment. Another aspect I like is that you can follow the action and see what is going on. Too often with films of this nature, it just turns into a gunfire fest, with the viewer having no idea of what is going on.

        Characterisation in this film is cleverly built up and by the end you have invested so much in the people that you really care for their fate and sit tensely viewing the action. There are two sides to this film; you have the story relating to Private Ryan used as a device to of course show the horrors of war and then also the cruel and random nature of survival and war in general. There is also a tale of cowardice woven into the mix and this was interesting, as I can imagine that many people found themselves paralysed by fear in this way. The early scenes with the discovery of the deaths of the Ryan brothers were poignantly handled and hearbreaking to watch. This aspect of the film is based loosely on a similar true story from the American Civil War. Death is depicted both swiftly and indiscriminately and sometimes, death is shown lingering - and these scenes are indeed difficult to watch

        Inevitably some artistic license is taken within the film with regards to some of the factual events that took place at the time. However, make no mistake, this does not detract from the overall story and message, nor from its authenticity.

        ***Cinematography***

        There does appear to be a kind of cast to this film, which I think is attributed to the fact that Spielberg reduced the traditional colour saturation by 60%. This in itself gives a kind of 'gritty' and realistic feel to the film, as well as suiting the subject matter and time period. Much of the film was shot on location in Ireland and England, yet you feel very much that you are in the heart of France and the fact that many of the battle scenes take place in bombed out streets, adds a kind of realism to the whole war situation. The beach scene alone took two months to film and involved around 1500 extras. It took a massive $12 million of the overall budget. The Oscar awarded for cinematography is well deserved, as is that awarded for editing. This is the last film to win an oscar for editing that was not done digitally.

        ***Soundtrack***

        The soundtrack is outstanding and again two of the Oscars were awarded for 'best sound' and 'best sound effects'. In particular the effects of gunfire and shells exploding were very authentic and weapons used during this actual period were used to create a most true to life feel - well, I imagine this to be the case.

        ***Performances***

        ***Tom Hanks***

        I think that this is one of Tom Hanks best perfromances. He plays Captain Miller in a kind of understated way. He doesn't come across as the big hero and seems very true to life; an ordinary man doing the best he can. I believe he had a big speech to give about what his character did for a living back home, but asked that this be cut, as he felt the character wouldn't go into such detail, which is my opinion was a good choice. He tries to rationalise the killing that is going on, trying to desperately believe that their mission has a higher purpose, while dreaming of returning home. He didn't get the oscar that year and I can't comment on the winner as I didn't see that film, but nevertheless, this was a fine sensitively delivered performance and for me, as I say his best even over Philadelphia etc.

        ***Matt Damon***

        Damon wasn't the initial choice for Private Ryan, but Spielberg was eventually won round by this actor who was an unknown at the time. He won his oscar for Good Will Hunting after he had been cast for this fim. Compared to others in the film his role is relatively minor, yet he plays the part convincingly. Another small fact; Damon was excluded from the gruelling training the cast went through - as Spielberg wanted to build up some tension and resentment between the other cast members who did have to do this. I believe it was quite difficult; Tom Hanks was well aware of what would be in store, but the others thought it would just be like a camping holiday! I think they were taken aback, by what they were expected to do.

        ***Vin Diesel***

        Again a great performance, in a part that was specially written in for him. He plays Private Adrian Carparzo. This film proves this man can act and it is a shame some of his other film choices don't have the same depth.

        ***Edward Burns***

        Edward plays the part of questioning soldier, Private Richard Reiben, who finds it hard to accept their mission and continually questions the orders he is given. I believe that this is the first role that Burns had ever undertaken which he had not written, nor directed himself.

        ***Giovanni Ribisi***

        His overall performance is good, but there is a particularly important scene (won't give any spoilers) that is outstanding and will move you to tears. It is a scene that could have been handled in so many different ways, but again it is played out in such a way, that you believe you are there and not just an observer.

        ***Adam Goldberg***

        I think this actor has also starred in Dazed and Confused (which I have not seen) and some episodes of Friends. He plays Private Stanley Mellish and perhaps stands out most in this film, when he comes across some German prisoners of war and delights in informing them he is Jewish.

        These are just a few of the actors that stood out, but there were many many more, as it was a huge cast, with some very well known actors.

        ***Is This Spielberg's Best Film?***

        Well, there are so many to choose from and for me it is a toss up between Schindler's List and this. Spielberg has a knack of getting to the heart of a story and breathing life into it in a sensitive, thought provoking manner. An interesting fact is that nearly half of Spielberg's films have been set in the 1930's and 1940's, so this era especially holds a lot of interest for him and it shines through. Overall, I think that the film succeeds on so many different levels, and the cast compliment each other nicely and each one is crucial and important to the story, which is how it should be.

        ***Special Features***

        Into the breach - the story behind the film, including an interview with Tom Hanks, Matt Damon and Steven Spielberg and actual footage and scenes from the war, highlighting the fact of course that ordinary men put their lives at risk. There are also interviews with veterans about their personal experiences.

        ***The Trailer***

        Cast and crew - notes and biographies on each of the cast etc
        The Production Index - This gives details of how the story came to life and what initially inspired the story that Robert Rodat wrote as a screenplay. It took eleven drafts before it was finally accepted.

        ***Quotes***

        Private Reiben: I got a bad feeling about this one.

        Captain Miller: When was the last time you felt good about anything?

        ***
        Captain Miller: He better be worth it. He better go home and cure a disease, or invent a longer-lasting light bulb.

        ***
        Private Ryan: Picture a girl who took a nosedive from the ugly tree and hit every branch on the way down.

        ***
        Corporal Upham: "Theirs is not to reason why, theirs is but to do or die."

        Mellish: La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la. What the f**k is that supposed to mean? (That's my favourite!!!!)

        ***Availability***

        The film is available from Amazon for £2.99 which is a fab price and should definitely be added to any collection. I really can't emphasise enough, that even if you don't like traditional 'war' films, you should give this a try. If you like to be taken on an emotional journey, then this film I guarantee will do just that.

        The film has a 15 certificate. (mostly owing to the violence and odd swear word)

        It runs for 169 minutes.

        This film makes me cry every time, but sometimes it is good to remember....

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          17.03.2010 23:18
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          The best war film every made so you've got to watch it.

          I'm not really into my war films but I'd make an exception for this 1984 American war movie set in the Normandy Invasion, World Ward II. In particular I love this movie because it is starring one of my favourite actors, Tom Hanks and also my favourite director, Steven Spielberg. Throw in excellent supporting cast with names like Matt Damon and Van Diesel and It's a no brainier really and I would have been more surprised if it was anything short of excellent.

          I was right not to give this one a miss as it was good enough to win many awards and was nominated for 11 Academy Awards, won 5 of them, one of which was for Best Director. The film grossed US$481.8 million worldwide, making it the highest-grossing domestic film of the year.

          Plot:

          After learning that Private Ryan's three brothers have all died in the war, the government attempts to locate him to send him back to his mum. The problem is they don't know if he is dead or alive behind enemy lines. A small unit of men led by the veteran Tom Hanks are sent on a dangerous mission to find him and return him home but the team are having mixed feelings about risking there lives for one man.

          Final Conclusion:

          Wow! What a movie, it just so satisfying on every level. Superb acting all round in particular Tom Hanks performance as Captain John H. Miller. I really connected to his character and his performance was simply superb and he deserved his nomination for an Academy Award.

          The opening 27 minutes of the movie is legendary for it's realism and intensity and depicts the Omaha beachhead assault of June 6, 1944. I can imagine that must of put a big dent in the films $90 million budget. It is probably the most intense and dramatic scene I've ever seen and it is so realistic you feel like you yourself are in the thick of the action.

          The concept of the movie is so clever and original and it is one of those movies that will make you ask the same questions as the unit that is sent in to "Save Private Ryan". This is one of those rare movies that ticks all the boxes and in my opinion is the best war film every made.

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          08.01.2010 17:18
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          Very realistic and well acted

          This is a great war movie of recent times that is a great favourite of mine, in no small part because I really like and admire Tom Hanks as an actor for his many varied roles he's played and showed how versatile he is. The movie was released in 1998 and picked up 5 oscars and deservedly so.

          Tom Hanks and Matt Damon star in this movie and Hanks plays the Captain sent to rescue Private Ryan who is played by Matt Damon. The setting for the film is World War II, and, while it is not actually a true story it's accuracy to historical details and the great acting made it a very compelling film to watch and enjoy.

          The film starts with American soldiers storming the beaches of Normandy. I was shocked to see how quickly soldiers were gunned down in cold blood. There were so many of them that had only just stepped off the boats and didn't have the chance to defend themselves against the onslaught. It was sheer suicide and futile. Some were too terrified to leave the boats and had to be forced out into battle. Despite all the carnage some of the American soldiers managed to advance up the beach and eventually took it over. There were huge losses and casualties in doing so.

          The visual effects in this movie were spectaular to say the least and D-Day in particular was realistic depicting the amount of wounded and dead soldiers floating in the water and lying on the beach. My attention was captured by the detailed imagery involved showing the soldiers as they battled to survive below and above the surface of the water. The special effects are better than almost any other war movie I've seen. They hold almost nothing back when someone gets shot and is very gory and graphical as it's based on a war.

          In the movie these men were sent out to rescue one Private after he had lost all of his brothers in the war. This would not have happened in reality.

          Tom Hanks in my opinion did an excellent job as the lead actor in Saving Private Ryan. He gave me the feeling that I had actually been there and lived through the war with them such is the horror and reality of it all.

          Overall, this is one of the best war movies I have seen over the years with the direction really capturing the feelings of the soldiers as they face a near impossible task and almost certain death in a lot of cases. They were very unselfish in what they did and dealt with things extremely well. Highly recommended whether you are fan of Tom Hanks and war movies or not.

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            09.12.2009 16:06
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            A must see for anybody, especially war movie fans

            I am a big fan of war movies, and also of the actor Tom Hanks. So for me, this was a must see. Based on the true story of the 'Fighting Sullivans', Saving Private Ryan is a fantastic masterpiece which imploys heroism, humanity and integrity into it. I was filled with awe and inspiration after watching this film and made me want to go upto every veteran of World War 2 and shake his hand for my utter most respect for what they have gone through. This film will be the closest thing to experiencing what these men went through throughout that time as possible.

            Directed in 1998 by the marvellous director Steven Spielberg, this film is set during the Normany invasion of World War 2 in 1944 and the certain events that fall upon a small group of soldiers who have a quest to find one particular soldiers whose 3 older brothers have all been killed in action. Captain Miller (Tom Hanks) leads the group to find this individual soldier, Private Ryan (Matt Damon). Other characters that are involved in this group are Miller's second-in-command, Sergeant Horvath (Tom Sizemore), and Private Reien (Edward Burns).

            The most recognizable scene out of this movie has to be the first 20 minutes which, whilst watching the events occur, had my jaw on the floor, amazed at how real, stunning and mesmerizing this opening was. You have the quietness of the soldiers, bracing themselves in the Higgins' Boats for the landing with the distant explosions drawing closer and loud as they near. Suddenly, when the ramps are lowered, the soldiers are hit by machine gun fire that tears through them. Explosions are scattered all around them, body parts being strewn across the battlefield. One by one, the soldier's perspective of these events show his allies falling all around him, some drowning,some shot,some on fire,absolute mayhem. The water is full of blood, screams of pain and anguish haunt the beach and we see just a fragment of what is was like for these poor souls throughout the war.

            The 20 minute prelude is one of the most disturbing yet awe-inspiring scenes you will ever see. Along with this, the cast are sublime, with every character having a story to them. Tom Hanks, Tom Sizemore and Matt Damon all stood out for me but all in all, every character was magnificiently portrayed. Instead of glamorizing the violence, Spielberg decides to show the real side to war, the consequences. If you want to be enthralled by a fantastic display of cinema making, this is the film for you

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            04.12.2009 20:39
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            10/10 war film - a definate must see!

            Directed by Speilberg with performances by Matt Damon and Tom Hanks among others what could be wrong with this film?My answer is absolutely nothing.

            * ^ * The Plot * ^ *
            The film begins with a fantastic yet horribly accurate portrayal of the US boat landings on Omaha beach, Normandy.
            Tom Hanks character Capt John H.Miller is then dispatched to help the US military bring home private James Ryan to his mother after the death of his three other brothers. Although a simple idea the task is far from a simple mission, and after setting out across France with 8 men they face German soldiers, a physcho with a machine gun and their own personal fights in a mission to save private ryan.

            * ^ * Opinion * ^ *

            I was expecting big things from this film and I wasn't dissapointed, as a huge fan of anything military I was interested to see how they would show the devestation at Omaha Beach and I was impressed to see that it was shot in a way that made the true horror of the event shine through. It showed the sheer amount of brave US soliders gunned down by the nazi's in a very powerful first scene.

            The casting was another place where the film impressed with the likes of Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Edward Norton and Vin Diesel they really got through the emotion of the characters situations without making any of it cheesey. The only downside to me was the character of cpl Upham who I just found wimpy and a bit pathetic, which I know was the main point of the character but I found him a bit too annoying for my liking.

            I found the film a brilliant look at WWII, with the fighting scenes laid out well and the sound effects adding the extra piece to a very moving film.

            All in all a great film, 5 stars from me without a doubt.

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              19.11.2009 17:32
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              A great film, possibly the best I've ever seen!

              In WW2 get a topic which has had many a film made about it, however; the best one has to be Saving Private Ryan!

              The best feature of Saving Private Ryan has to be the special effects. From explosions, to tanks and men lying on the shore of Omaha beach with half thier intesines hanging out. After the opening scene I was surprised they had any money left after that; but the same jaw dropping standard was kept throughout.

              Another strongpoint is the mixture between Fighting and talking between the characters; whilst being action packed, you still gain a clear understanding of each character, thier views and other details.

              The storyline is believeable and well engineered, it draws the watcher and interests one for the duration. It goes as follows: Land on Omaha beach, recieve mission about James Ryan needing to be rescued, make way to James Ryans position with some fighting along the way and finally a finale battle at the end.

              The ending is quite sad, with most of the men dying.

              The acting is good by all of the cast; and Tom Hanks lives up to his reputation of never appearing in a bad film.

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              21.09.2009 19:29
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              A perfect film

              note: also appears in part on Flixster and The Student Room

              Steven Spielberg has made many great films, but there are few that are as powerful and wrenching as Saving Private Ryan, save for perhaps Schindler's List. This is a poignant, touching, disturbing, and altogether extremely good film that won Spielberg his second Best Director Academy Award.

              The film has Captain John H. Miller (Tom Hanks), commanding officer of C Company, 2nd Ranger Battalion, leading a team of soldiers who must recover a soldier named Private First Class James Francis Ryan (Matt Damon), because his other three brothers have all been killed in action, and their mother will recieve the news of the three deaths on the same day. Of course, the rest of the team aren't so thrilled about risking their lives for the sake of this, but nevertheless begin their mission.

              The film is noted for its searing depiction of the Normandy landing on Omaha Beach, which has since been copied numerous times. Spielberg's direction is amazing, capturing the full terror of the war whilst also providing interesting, sympathetic characters. Rather than judge, it simply tries to show events as they are, with gritty direction that goes underwater with the Allies, and treks right through the dirt. It also doesn't shy away from graphic violence, and recieved much attention for its unrelentingly intense opening 25 minute battle portion. It also has an affecting storyline that cuts between Ryan when he is older, at the gravesite of the fallen soldiers of WW2, and the war itself. Hanks is utterly stunning in the lead role, and Spielberg's direction is simply fascinating.

              One of the greatest war films ever made, this is incredibly authentic-looking (as evidenced by the awe-inspiring Normandy landing scene) and superbly engaging. I dare you to not feel even slightly choked up as this film ends - a truly wonderful cinematic experience.

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              07.09.2009 17:41
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              Ranks amongst the greatest war films ever made....

              Saving Private Ryan is a powerful WWII film directed by Steven Spielberg which focuses on a US GI squad (led by Capt Miller played by Tom Hanks)which is sent deep behind enemy lines to retirieve a lone soldier (Private Ryan played by Matt Damon) and return him to his mother following the tragic death of her three other sons during the war.

              The films dramatic opening 20 mins shows the US D-Day landing at Omaha beach in Normandy and is perhaps the most horrific, visceral and realistic depiction of the horrors of war ever committed to film. It's not for the faint of heart, body parts are strewn as the valiant American soldiers are heavily resisted by German machine guns and artillery shells.

              After the invasion of fortress Europe on June 6th 1944, Tom Hanks leads his squad from the 2nd Ranger Battalion of the 29th Infantry Division, on a mission to find and bring home Private James Francis Ryan after the death of his brothers. The mission takes them through Nazi occupied territory to establish contact with Ryan's unit an element of the 101st Airborne Division. This exiting war thriller brings the reality of history's bloodiest war into the homes of ordinary people, but also brings into light the reality of broken and lost families in a time of total and encompassing war.

              This films ranks highly amongst the greatest war films ever made (Platoon/Apocalypse now etc) and is in my opinion Spielberg's finest film since Schindler's list. The movie has that trademark Speilberg style--the structure is all tied up and unified from beginning to end, the emotional symbols abound, the music swelling when he's working at your emotions, the hand held camera that worked so well in Shindler's List to give you a feeling of participation, camera angles and periods of silence to disorient you (like Shindler), suspense techniques learned from Hitch... It's a movie that stays with you for a period afterwards.
              It simply shows the realism of war throughout, never attempting to glamourise it. It's a must for a film fan's DVD collection.

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                03.08.2009 21:22

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                This film has one of the greatest opening sequence in film history and some of the most devastating and brutal footage of war and combat ever committed to film. For a good 20 minutes the audience in harried with the horrors of war and put straight into the action with the soldiers of D-Day - subject to the sounds and sights that each man was faced with when he stepped off the landing platform to face the Nazis. This is an awesome display of cinematography and sound effects will generate an atmosphere so realistic that it is almost painful to watch, on repeat viewings of this scene i imagined myself in the situation that these men were faced with and it made me very upset - this is the lengths of realism this scene puts you through.

                Once the mood is set and the the fact that war is hell is established the film moves on to a harrowing story of heroism and bravery. A brilliant story that allows the characters to explore all areas and settings of WWII and allow Spielberg to really add effect to this film by trying to convey what fighting in the war would of been like. It is true that real veterans of WWII have said that this film and certain scenes depicted in it are frighteningly close to the real thing - and this makes the experience all the more traumatic to watch.The cast is excellent in this film and i was very glad to see that there is no ego acting going on with such big names working next to each other - all the actors seem to understand that they are not the real heroes that the film depicts and so play down any heroics that they have to portray. The score to this film is also incredible and very moving - it always brings a tear to my eye when you see the rows and rows of graves matched with John William's music.

                Saving Private Ryan took a number of Oscars home but i though it deserved best picture and best original score but none the less this film is ultimately fantastic and a true epic and triumph for the War genre. The war should never be forgotten or 'fictionalised' and films like this maintain the realism and horror that people sometimes forget when the subject of war comes up.

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                23.07.2009 22:53
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                The standard at which all war films are judged by. See it.

                In my opinion, this is the best war film ever made.

                From the plot outline alone, one may deduce (very wrongly) that this is a rescue mission first as foremost and focused solely on James Ryan and getting him home.

                However, this film went where no other war film had gone before - into the minds and real experiences of soldiers in D-Day and beyond. The opening sequence of SPR is one which has held audiences amazed, disgusted, moved and shocked. The raw brutality and pure reality of storming the beaches of Normandy is brought to life in an un-censored bloody way.

                Though SPR includes many scenes of war and violence, it is a different kind of violence. It is portrayed without glamor or glorification, and when I tell you that I personally could not stop thinking about this film for days after seeing it, you will maybe understand just how deep this film goes.

                I would go so far as to say that SPR is actually an anti-war film, because of the way human life is shown to be treated during times of conflict. It certainly makes you think about war in general, and you find yourself wondering what you would do in those situations if you were there, nearly drowning in the wet sand with bullets flying and your friend's guts hanging out all over the blood-soaked sand.

                No film in my opinion has ever come close to showing the reality of war (the closest is probably Band of Brothers, a fabulous TV series co-produced by Spielberg as well) as well as Saving Private Ryan does.

                All in all, you cannot go without seeing this. You have to be in the right mood, but my god does it keep a grip on you when you are watching it. You feel like you're there with them.

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                  13.07.2009 00:48
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                  the best war film ever made

                  Saving private ryan hit the screens in 1998 directed by steven spielberg.With a great cast this was just destined to be a great film actors such as Tom Hanks, Vin Diesel, Matt Damon, and Barry Pepper all playing parts in this film.

                  It is set in world war 2 and contains alot of gore it is a very visual film with scenes showing legs getting blown off soldiers being shot and there guts hanging out not a film for the weakk stomached people out there.

                  The story follows a close team of friends who are risking there lives to save one man ( Private Ryan ) because all his brothers had been killed in the war so the army didnt want his mother to loose all of her childern so this team is sent to find ryan keep him alive and take him home.

                  If you have not seen this film then you should go out and buy it as soon as possible i belive it is the best war film ever made.

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                    28.06.2009 18:23
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                    Can't wait for the Blu-Ray release

                    Saving Private Ryan is a war movie released over ten years ago in 1998 and directed by Steven Spielberg. Tom Hanks stars as Captain John H. Miller who leads a chosen group of US soldiers in the hope of finding paratrooper; Private Ryan (Matt Damon). The reason they are looking for a soldier is to take him out of action and return him to his mother as unknown to him; his three brothers have died. The group consist of great characters both experienced and new to the force. My favourite is Pvt. Daniel Jackson (sniper) played by the underrated Barry Pepper. I've said it in a few reviews but I'll say it again; this guy needs bigger roles! All his scenes are excellent.

                    The movie introduction is quite famous now and is set in 1944 during the D-Day landings at the beaches. Brilliant directing and shocking gore create an intense and thrilling start. It doesn't surprise me in the least that it won Best Director and Best Cinematography amongst others, because they're both incredible.

                    Saving Private Ryan consists of a great mix of realistic war action, drama and time changes to give more depth to the plot. Although it does have some shocking scenes, it really is an enjoyable movie as a whole and I highly recommend you watch it, if you've yet to.

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                • Product Details

                  Since its release in 1998, Steven Spielberg's D-Day drama Saving Private Ryan has become hugely influential: everything, from the opening sequence of Gladiator ("Saving Marcus Aurelius") to the marvellous 10-hour TV series Band of Brothers, has been made in its shadow. There have been many previous attempts to recreate the D-Day landings on screen (notably, the epic The Longest Day), but thanks to Spielberg's freewheeling hand-held camerawork, Ryan was the first time an audience really felt like they were there, storming up Omaha Beach in the face of withering enemy fire. After the indelible opening sequence, however, the film is not without problems. The story, though based on an American Civil War incident, feels like it was concocted simply to fuel Spielberg's sentimental streak. In standard Hollywood fashion the Germans remain a faceless foe (with the exception of one charmless character who turns out to be both a coward and a turncoat); and the Tom Hanks-led platoon consists of far too many stereotypes: the doughty Sergeant; the thick-necked Private; the Southern man religious sniper; the cowardly Corporal. Matt Damon seems improbably clean-cut as the titular Private in need of rescue (though that may well be the point); and why do they all run straight up that hill towards an enemy machine gun post anyway? Some non-US critics have complained that Ryan portrays only the American D-Day experience, but it is an American film made and financed by Americans after all. Accepting both its relatively narrow remit and its lachrymose inclinations, Saving Private Ryan deserves its place in the pantheon of great war pictures. On the DVD: Saving Private Ryan on disc comes in a good-quality anamorphic 1.85:1 transfer with a suitably dynamic Dolby Digital 5.1 sound mix in which bullets fly all around your living room. Extra features are pretty minimal, with a standard 30-minute "making of" piece called "Into the Breach" and two trailers. There are text notes on the cast and crew as well as the production, and a brief message from Mr Spielberg himself about why he decided to make the movie. --Mark Walker