“Mr. Spielberg has made sure that neither he nor the Holocaust will ever be thought of in the same way again.” – Janet Maslin, New York Times reporter.
The New York Times depicts Steven Spielberg’s film, Schindler’s List as an award winning masterpiece. This article mentions that the incredible visceral scenes invite audiences around the world watching the film to have extreme empathy for the Holocaust victims. This article states how the actual storyline being put into film was an enormous act of courage and passion. The book Schindler’s List, written by Thomas Keneally goes into depth about what really went on during the excruciating time period, putting this into film for people to see would take a lot of courage and knowledge about the events. Maslin mentions in the article, “The tension in “Schindler’s List” comes, of course, from the omnipresent threat of violence. But here again, Mr. Spielberg departs from the familiar. The film’s violent acts are relatively few, considering its subject matter, and are staged without the blatant sadism that might be expected. Goeth’s hobby of playing sniper, casually targeting his prisoners with a high-powered rifle, is presented so matter-of-factly that it becomes much more terrible than it would be if given more lingering attention.” At the end of the article Maslin writes, Spielberg’s year (1993) brought the most astounding one-two punch in America Cinema History. First directing Jurassic Park, and second Schindler’s List.
This article published by The New York Times in 2008, reviews the book written by Thomas Keneally precisely. The reason the book and second the film even came to life is because a middle aged man was in desperate need of a new briefcase. Keneally walked into a small luggage shop in 1981 and was assisted by a Holocaust survivor named Leopold Page Pfefferberg. After being told the story Keneally was ecstatic to record this story, being the story of Oskar Schindler. Dwight Garner, writer for The New York Times said, “Schindler’s story might yet be untold if Mr. Page hadn’t almost literally grabbed Mr. Keneally by the lapels on that day in October 1981, showing him the two filing cabinets he’d stuffed with information about Schindler’s life. He’d tried to interest writers in this material before.” Keneally’s “documentay novel” later became the source of Steven Spielberg’s Academy Award-winning movie in 1993. To pursue this project the two of them took a trip to Poland in search of finding people that were saved by this incredible man. The article talks about how intense some of the interviews are, “We interviewed adult women who, decades later, still carried crusts of bread with them when they left the house. The experience of hunger was so seared into their brains that they could not travel without the irrational fear that the bus or the taxi in which they rode would be stopped.” Once the interviews were complete, Keneally returned to his office in Sydney Australia, where he spread all the information out on a pool table in view of a beach. The article concludes with a comment stated by Mr. Page to Mr. Keneally, “You wouldn’t have lasted two weeks with the Nazis. They loved killing guys like you. Poetic guys.”
Maslin, Janet. “Schindler’s List: Imagining the Holocaust to Remember It.” The New York Times 15 December 1993.
Garner, Dwight. “A Wartime Tale That Had to Be Told.” The New York Times 25 December 2008: Book Of The Times