Saturday, March 6, 2010

Das Miracle.

Anyone who knows me understands that I am something of a movie freak. I never get to see as many as I would like, and especially living here in Rochester which is the home of motion picture film, it is something of a travesty. Netflix however, has become my great savior in so many ways. I've been able to catch up on a lot of movies that I very well should have seen, but never had either the time or the ability to get around to viewing.

It also provides a great resource of foreign films (foreign to the U.S.) as well. I truly enjoy watching movies from other countries, as it does provide something of a window into other cultures. Still, just as those seeing American movies get perhaps the wrong impression of life here, I'm careful not to think that a movie say, from France, is an exact picture of life there. I just finished seeing a movie that, I know I should have see when it first came out in the early 80's, but never did.

"Das Boot (The Boat)" is nothing short of perfection. It has been hailed as the submarine movie, bar none, and now it's easy to see why it earned that accolade. I watched the director's cut, and while at 3.5 hours it may be too long for some, it was sheer heaven for me. The movie centers around the lives of crew members aboard a German U-boat in 1941, just as the tide was starting to turn against the dominance of U-boats in their fight with England. It's a claustrophobic look at daily life inside these floating tin cans, and the stresses they're up against. It's a miraculous piece of art.

Yes, this was a film about our enemy in WWII, but in the end I found myself rooting for these guys. It sucks you into this world hook, line, and sinker. As I said, it's not going to be for everyone, especially for those Americans that are more used to movies in this genre along the lines of "The Hunt For Red October," which I love by the way, but for different reasons (Sean Connery's horrid Russian accent, or lack thereof, not being one of them.).

Das Boot is most definitely more of a psychological thriller in many ways, and the U-boat is as much a character as are the rest of the crew. You can catch a clip here:

My advice? Watch the German version with English subtitles. While the dubbed version is done by the same actors, and is very good, I still prefer watching the German version. I still notice in the dubbed version that the actor's mouth movements don't match the dialogue, and this is very annoying to me.


Wafa' said...

i love love movies, and you are right in that movies does not represent the life of the country the movie came from. "the boat" seems like a good movie . i should look for it. thank you for the review :)

Guyana-Gyal said...

I've heard of Netflix, I've read about it too, what a great business concept.

Slices of life, that's what stories are. A piece of a life, a thought, a belief.

I can't imagine rooting for the enemy, one day, I might see Das Boots.

I agree...with the subtitles, the movies are better.

If you can get Olga, a Brazilian movie, check it out. And Os Narradores de Jave. These are really good movies. And Bye Bye Brasil.

There's one from Iran I saw too, The children of heaven.

I love those movies where nothing seems to happen but....

Mr. Nighttime said...

Wafa - Glad to give you the recommendation. If you watch the Director's Cut version be prepared; it is 4 hours long, but it's worth it.

GG-Yes, I REALLY want to see Children of Heaven too, as I've heard a lot of good things about it as well.

Jay said...

I started off not being able to watch submarine movies, because of the claustrophobic atmosphere and the constant feeling that everyone was about to drown, but for some reason I came to love them and OH says I had a real thing about them when we met. I can't remember ...

I haven't seen this one though. Maybe I will!