Schindlers List : 25th Anniversary edition Reviews

25 years ago, Schindlers List was released. A brilliantly bold film that was both personal and pertinent for its director, Steven Spielberg. That year it won 7 Academy awards, Best Picture, Best Director as well as awards for John Williams, Steven Zaillian and Janusz Kaminiski. It also open up the SHOAH to discussion about the period. The evil of the age and the effects it had after the war. 25 years on, a complete restoration project was put in process. This created the Blu ray, including a 4K UHD release, brings the film back to our screen once more. It also opens up the life of those who suffered and the accountability that was felt by the hero of the piece, Oskar Schindler. Schindlers legacy has had a deep and profound effect on the Jewish community in Poland. He saved thousands from the death camps and even under great personal risk, kept paying for the lives of others.

The story of Schindler is that of Jews in Poland. It is the story of the people who were obliterated by the German SS and seen as the centre of the ills from Germany. Hitler had turned them into enemy number one. All were pushed to destroy them. Wipe out their rich and complex history within Poland. Kraków, the Germans have forced local Polish Jews into the overcrowded Kraków Ghetto. Oskar Schindler, an ethnic German from Czechoslovakia, arrives and begins to build a business. He is a member of the Nazi Party and uses bribes with German armed forces and SS officials to acquire a factory to produce enamelware. Itzhak Stern, a local Jewish official is his right hand man. He knows black marketeers and the Jewish business community. He gets Schindler the money, Schindler gets them goods and jobs. This saves them from being transported to concentration camps or killed. Spielberg was known for films that reflected on the war prior to spends Schindlers List. Empire of the Sun, 1941 and Indiana Jones. However with each of these films, he dealt with his own connection at a distance. With this film, he engaged directly and without restraint. He admitted openly that this film was his way back to Judaism but I would further that with, it is his way of understanding what his family journey was from Russia into the US. He is examining his reality and how that has created the world for a post war generation, espically if you are Jewish. He uses the film to explore what happened, his connection to this and why it is so important to humanity.

Now what you have come for. The 4K disc is not on this review. Sadly. However the Blu Ray is set to be reviewed.  The comparison between the DVD and Blu Ray has revealled three things. Firstly the cinematography has been moderately improved on, with clarity and texture. However the DVD version was still deep enough. It wasnt a crisp but it had a texture which I really liked. The second thing is that there is a light blow out in a few scattered scenes that I hadnt noticed before. This is forceful and blinding but almost works. The third and final thing is that the infamous Ghetto liquidation scene is even more hard to watch as it allows for the depth of field. It makes the impactfulness of this essential film…astonishing.

The Extras are a shame however. They are ripped form the DVD bar the 25th Anniversary feature. But you are not here for these. You are here for the film…

 

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