Schindler's List

i'm reading Schindler's List. I've been meaning to read it for a few years and now that I have a first edition copy, I thought it was time.

The thing that is impressing me most about the book really has nothing to do with the book. It's the way Spielberg and Steven Zaillian, the screenplay writer, interpreted the manuscript for the movie. Brilliant. they stayed true to the factual content of the book while still managing to weave a compelling story. They didn't stray from the novel under the protective statement we so often hear from film makers who base their work on books; "It's based on the book".... Yes. Based on the book but most of it is made up and sensationalized. NOT with Schindler's List. Spielberg respects the book. Yes, he moved events around and there are conversations that didn't happen just like in the book but he made those decisions with the greatest of care. He didn't change the meaning of anything.

A great book and a great movie.
Adapting a book to a film is quite a difficult thing in some cases. Schindler's list was handled masteerfully. A Wrinkle in Time, not so much. For the record, the greatest dissonance between book quality and movie quality is "Battlefield Earth" It's an amazing novel, that spawned one of the worst films ever made.

I still watch Schindlers list every few yeras. It's a good reminder of the heights film can achieve when stars align.
As it turns out, Spielberg did make some creative decisions that may not have been historically accurate. He changed Schindler's motives a little to create more of a character arc as the industrialist became sympathetic to the horrors the Jews were facing. In the book Oscar saw what was happening right away and did all that he could to save the Jewish people working for him. He wasn't driven by greed. The money was there but from the beginning he worked to protect the prisoners. Also, in the book Itzhak Shern, played by Ben Kingsley in the movie, was not as prominent a person. He was there and he did advise Oscar but he was not Oscar's right hand man as he was in the movie. There were other discrepancies between the movie and the book, but in the end, the story of Oscar Schindler during this period of time is sort of correct. He did save over 1100 Jewish people from death at great personal risk to himself and complete financial ruin. By the end of the war, he was penniless.
Fantastic. ... and, as it turned out, after the war, when Oskar was broke, the very Jews he saved, turned around and saved him. They took care of him. By all accounts, he was a flawed man, but the good in him outweighed the bad.