SAVING PRIVATE RYAN
BY CHRISTOPHER HASKELL
NOVEMBER 17, 2013
Easily one of the best war films of all time, Steven Spielberg brings to the screen a representation of WWII’s D-day that overwhelms and captivates in the most emotional, realistic, and an unforgettable 24-minute opening sequence that blows you away while opening your eyes to the loss of the war. “Saving Private Ryan” brings an all-star cast to the screen, led by the terrific Tom Hanks, who embodies Capt. John Miller in a dynamic and breath-taking way. Leading his men on a mission to find a missing private who is set to be sent home after his three brothers have been killed, Miller (Hanks) fights his way through questioning GIs and approaching dangers, in set-piece after memorable set-piece, revealing more and more about a war over seven decades ago.
Every actor plays their part wonderfully, bringing the camaraderie of war to never heights, and opening the door for mini-series like “Band Of Brothers.” The writing, especially in dialogue, helps develop this enormous cast of characters in one of the most natural and impressive feats in screenwriting history. Spielberg and his cinematographer encapsulate the unease and unforgiving nature of war and with beautiful landscapes and constant close-ups of the characters, the film will never lose it’s antiquity, standing the test of time over decades to come. One of the most memorable achievements in film-making history, to take on the gigantic task of producing this epic for the screen is enough to place Spielberg in the annals of best director of all-time, even on top of his already outstanding work. Never before and not since has there been a more entertaining and thoughtful representation of the war and for that “Saving Private Ryan” remains one of my all-time favorite films.
July 24, 1998
(for intense prolonged realistically graphic sequences of war violence, and for language)