Spielberg It – MMU 11

 Saving Private Ryan

Saving Private Ryan is Steven Spielberg’s 1998 World War II epic set during the Invasion of Normandy. It tells the story of United States Army Rangers Captain John H. Miller (Tom Hanks) and a squad (Tom Sizemore, Edward Burns, Barry Pepper, Giovanni Ribisi, Vin Diesel, Adam Goldberg, and Jeremy Davies) as they search for a paratrooper, Private First Class James Francis Ryan (Matt Damon), who is the last surviving brother of four servicemen.

The film’s graphic portrayal of war, according to many World War II veterans, was the most realistic depiction of combat they had ever seen. In fact, it was so realistic that some combat veterans of D-Day and Vietnam had to leave theaters during the opening scene depicting the Normandy invasion. This led to many counselors advising “more psychologically vulnerable” veterans to avoid watching it. The scene was named the “best battle scene of all time” by Empire magazine and was ranked number one on TV Guide’s list of the “50 Greatest Movie Moments.”

Ultimately, Saving Private Ryan was nominated for eleven Academy Awards, winning five including Best Director. It also won the Golden Globes for Best Motion Picture – Drama and Director, the BAFTA Award for Special Effects and Sound, the Directors Guild of America Award, a Grammy Award for Best Film Soundtrack, the Producers Guild of America Golden Laurel Award, and the Saturn Award for Best Action, Adventure, or Thriller Film. It is now considered to be one of the greatest movies ever made and has been selected for preservation in the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress.

Lately, it seems that a lot of the movies discussed on the show have been fun, Saturday afternoon popcorn fare. But those aren’t the only types of films that leave a lasting impact. In fact, it’s often movies like Saving Private Ryan that leave the greatest mark. If you’re thinking that a movie of this caliber had an impact on the Val, Tracy, and Jake, you’re right. Listen as they share their thoughts on how it affected their love of film and helped bring them to where they are today.

So what are your thoughts when it comes to Saving Private Ryan? Is it Steven Spielberg’s greatest film? Where does it rank on your list of favorite war movies? What about favorite movies? Do you feel that it’s too violent? Send us your thoughts to podcast@moviesthatmakeus.com. You can also send us any other feedback you have about our show as well as suggestions for movies you want us to discuss on future episodes. We’d love to hear what you think!

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Jake Dietz

Chief Operations Officer Jake is a blogger, podcaster, and all-around geek/nerd. He enjoys all sorts of different “fandoms,” but more than anything he loves movies. Movies have always been a big part of his life. From escaping into them as a child and teenager to working in the business as a concessions worker at his local theater, movies have always been there for Jake. In addition to his extensive DVD/Blu-ray/iTunes movie collection, Jake is also a loving husband to one wonderful wife and father to six amazing children.

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