Saving Private Ryan

Saving Private Ryan is a 1998 film directed by Steven Spielberg dealing with the World War II Battle of Normandy.

The film is particularly notable for the intensity of the scenes in its first twenty minutes or so, which depict the Omaha beachhead assault of June 6, 1944. Thereafter it takes a very heavily fictionalised route built around the search for a particular member of the United States 101st Airborne Division. The beachhead assault and the other battles shown in the movie have inspired many PC and video games, such as Unreal Tournament (1999), Return to Castle Wolfenstein, Medal of Honor: Allied Assault and Frontline, and Call of Duty, all of which have tried to re-create the famous D-day landing.

Spielberg later pursued his interest in the Normandy campaign with the television mini-series Band of Brothers which he co-produced with Tom Hanks.

Awards

The film was nominated for 11 Academy Awards, and won five: for Best Director, Best Film Editing (Michael Kahn), Best Cinematography, Best Sound, and Best Sound Effects Editing.

Synopsis

Spoiler warning: Plot or ending details follow.

The general plot of the film, as the title suggests, is a humanitarian rescue mission led by John Miller, an army captain, played by Tom Hanks to return the last surviving Ryan brother from the Normandy front line to his mother. Many critics commented that the film seemed marred somewhat by Spielberg's propensity for sentimentalism.

Miller, as played by Hanks, conceals his erstwhile profession of schoolteacher and his background from the troops under his command; the uncovering of Miller's background becomes a sub-plot of the film in as much as the men have a pool on his origins, which he steadfastly refuses to reveal. Under intensely difficult circumstances, Miller displays a decisive and courageous manner to his soldiers - his suppressed nervousness is communicated only by his unsteady hands.

The bond between Miller and his men is forged in the beachhead assault on a German bunker, where his decisive action saved the day.

As the position consolidates, Miller is given his new assigment, to find Private Ryan, who had been parachuted in as a member of the 101st Airborne, which, as the film historically correctly asserts, was scattered widely across Normandy. Ryan is the sole surviving member of four brothers, the other three having been killed in action. The American command takes the decision to bring him back for his mother's sake.

Eventually, at the expense of two members of their unit, Miller and his men catch up with Ryan. They break the news of his brothers' deaths to him and tell him that he is going home. Ryan is reluctant in the decision but decides not to desert his strategically important post. Miller and his men protect him, and all but two members of the unit are killed in a ferocious German tank assault on the bridge over the Merderet River in the (fictional) village of Ramelle, which they are defending. Ryan survives, but Miller is killed in the assault.

Historical background

The real "Ryan" was Sgt. Frederick (Fritz) Niland who, with some other members of the 101st, was inadvertently dropped too far inland. They eventually made their own way back to their unit at Carentan, where the Chaplain, Lt. Col. Father Francis Sampson, told Niland about the death of his three brothers, two at Normandy and one in the Far East. Under the US War Department's Sole Survivor Policy, brought about following the death of five Sullivan brothers serving on the same ship, Fr. Sampson arranged passage back to Britain and thereafter to his parents, Augusta and Michael Niland, in Tonawanda. There was no behind-the-lines Ranger rescue mission, Niland was not a simple private, his mother was not a widow, nor is she believed to have received all three telegrams together. Additionally, the brother believed killed in the Far East turned out to have been captured and later returned home. Fr. Francis Sampson wrote about Niland and the story of the 101st, in his 1958 book, Look Out Below! (ISBN 1877702005).

Main cast

  • Tom Hanks - Captain John Miller, a former schoolteacher
  • Edward Burns - Private Richard Reiben, from Brooklyn.
  • Tom Sizemore - Sgt. Michael Horvath
  • Matt Damon - Private James Ryan
  • Jeremy Davies - Corporal Timothy E. Upham, added to Millers's team as an interpreter, speaking French and German. He is presented as somewhat naïve and cowardly
  • Adam Goldberg - Private Stanley Mellish
  • Barry Pepper - Private Daniel Jackson, the sniper of Miller's group
  • Giovanni Ribisi - Private Irwin Wade, the medic of Miller's group
  • Vin Diesel - Private Adrian Caparzo
  • Ted Danson - Captain Fred Hamill
  • Paul Giamatti - SSgt. William Hill
  • Dennis Farina - Lt. Col. Walter Anderson
  • Harve Presnell - Gen. George C. Marshall


See the page at the Internet Movie Database (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0120815/) for a more comprehensive cast list.

Filming locations

Locations for the film include:

  • World War II Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial: first and last scenes of the movie
  • Hatfield, Hertfordshire
  • Curracloe, Wexford, Ireland: D-Day scene

2004 broadcast controversy

The film was the focus of some controversy leading up to a Veterans Day 2004 broadcast of the film by ABC. A significant number of ABC affiliates decided to preempt the network's broadcast due to concerns of repercussions from the FCC due to the film's depiction of violence and profanity. Although the film had been broadcast by all ABC affiliates in two prior years, the Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show controversy and the subsequent FCC response led at least 66 stations to choose not to broadcast it, including:

  • WOI-TV in Des Moines, Iowa
  • WSB-TV in Atlanta, Georgia
  • KITV-TV in Honolulu, Hawaii
  • WHAS-TV of Louisville, Kentucky
  • WSOC-TV in Charlotte, North Carolina
  • WGNO-TV of New Orleans, Louisiana
  • WCPO-TV of Cincinnati, Ohio
  • KVUE-TV of Austin, Texas
  • WMUR-TV of Manchester, New Hampshire
  • WTEN-TV of Albany, New York
  • WCDC-TV of Adams, Massachusetts
  • WRIC-TV of Richmond, Virginia
  • All ABC affiliates owned by the Sinclair Broadcast Group

The affiliates which chose not to broadcast the film represented over a third of the network's potential viewing audience; besides Sinclair, some ABC stations owned by Cox Television, Belo, Hearst-Argyle, McGraw-Hill, and EW Scripps all chose to preempt the film. In its stead, affilates showed alternative films, such as Hoosiers, Far & Away, and Return to Mayberry. Other stations showed infomercials, while other affiliates showed their own tributes to Veterans Day.

Months later, the FCC released a statement that stated the affiliates would not have been banned if they presented the film.

Trivia

This is one of three Tom Hanks movies, (along with Forrest Gump and Apollo 13) where socks play a role in the plot. The G.I.s use socks for the shells of their sticky bombs.


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This is one of three Tom Hanks movies, (along with Forrest Gump and Apollo 13) where socks play a role in the plot. The G.I.s use socks for the shells of their sticky bombs. It stars Greta Scacchi, Colin Firth, John Gielgud, Billie Whitelaw, Patrick Ryecart, Denholm Elliott and Ben Kingsley. Months later, the FCC released a statement that stated the affiliates would not have been banned if they presented the film. It was adapted by Blanche Hanalis and directed by Desmond Davis. Other stations showed infomercials, while other affiliates showed their own tributes to Veterans Day. In 1984 a version of Camille was produced for television. In its stead, affilates showed alternative films, such as Hoosiers, Far & Away, and Return to Mayberry. It stars Carla Fracci.

The affiliates which chose not to broadcast the film represented over a third of the network's potential viewing audience; besides Sinclair, some ABC stations owned by Cox Television, Belo, Hearst-Argyle, McGraw-Hill, and EW Scripps all chose to preempt the film. It was adapted by Jean Aurenche, Enrico Medioli and Vladimir Pozner, and directed by Mauro Bolognini. Although the film had been broadcast by all ABC affiliates in two prior years, the Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show controversy and the subsequent FCC response led at least 66 stations to choose not to broadcast it, including:. A 1980 version, La Dame aux camélias, in French, was produced. A significant number of ABC affiliates decided to preempt the network's broadcast due to concerns of repercussions from the FCC due to the film's depiction of violence and profanity. It stars Danièle Gaubert and Nino Castelnuovo. The film was the focus of some controversy leading up to a Veterans Day 2004 broadcast of the film by ABC. It was adapted by Michael DeForrest and directed by Radley Metzger.

Locations for the film include:. In 1969, a drug-laced Italian language version called Camille 2000 was produced. See the page at the Internet Movie Database (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0120815/) for a more comprehensive cast list. It stars Mona Maris.
. In the same year, La Mujer de las camelias, an Argentine version was adapted by Alexis de Arancibia (as Wassen Eisen) and Ernesto Arancibia, and directed by Ernesto Arancibia. Francis Sampson wrote about Niland and the story of the 101st, in his 1958 book, Look Out Below! (ISBN 1877702005). It was directed by Gavaldón, and stars María Félix.

Fr. A 1954 Mexican version, called Camelia was adapted by José Arenas, Edmundo Báez, Roberto Gavaldón and Gregorio Walerstein. Additionally, the brother believed killed in the Far East turned out to have been captured and later returned home. It stars Gino Cervi, Micheline Presle and Roland Alexandre. There was no behind-the-lines Ranger rescue mission, Niland was not a simple private, his mother was not a widow, nor is she believed to have received all three telegrams together. A 1953 French version called La Dame aux camélias was adapted by Bernard Natanson and directed by Raymond Bernard. Sampson arranged passage back to Britain and thereafter to his parents, Augusta and Michael Niland, in Tonawanda. It was adapted by Roberto Tasker and directed by Gabriel Soria, and stars Lina Montes and Emilio Tuero.

Under the US War Department's Sole Survivor Policy, brought about following the death of five Sullivan brothers serving on the same ship, Fr. A 1944 Spanish language version was produced in Mexico. Father Francis Sampson, told Niland about the death of his three brothers, two at Normandy and one in the Far East. The movie was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress (Greta Garbo). The movie inspired Milton Benjamin to write and publish a song called "I'll Love Like Robert Taylor, Be My Greta Garbo". Col. It stars Greta Garbo, Robert Taylor and Lionel Barrymore. They eventually made their own way back to their unit at Carentan, where the Chaplain, Lt. It was adapted by Zoe Akins, Frances Marion and James Hilton, and directed by George Cukor.

Frederick (Fritz) Niland who, with some other members of the 101st, was inadvertently dropped too far inland. Arguably the most famous version was the 1936 Hollywood version. The real "Ryan" was Sgt. It stars Yvonne Printemps and Pierre Fresnay. Ryan survives, but Miller is killed in the assault. It was adapted by Abel Gance and directed by Gance and Fernand Rivers. Miller and his men protect him, and all but two members of the unit are killed in a ferocious German tank assault on the bridge over the Merderet River in the (fictional) village of Ramelle, which they are defending. The first sound version was made in French in 1934, called La Dame aux camélias.

Ryan is reluctant in the decision but decides not to desert his strategically important post. There are no known copies of this film extant. They break the news of his brothers' deaths to him and tell him that he is going home. It stars Norma Talmadge and Gilbert Roland. Eventually, at the expense of two members of their unit, Miller and his men catch up with Ryan. It was directed by Fred Niblo. The American command takes the decision to bring him back for his mother's sake. A 1926 version was adapted by Fred De Gresac, George Marion Jr., Olga Printzlau and Chandler Sprague.

Ryan is the sole surviving member of four brothers, the other three having been killed in action. It stars Uno Henning and Tora Teje. As the position consolidates, Miller is given his new assigment, to find Private Ryan, who had been parachuted in as a member of the 101st Airborne, which, as the film historically correctly asserts, was scattered widely across Normandy. A 1925 Swedish film called Damen med kameliorna was adapted and directed by Olof Molander. The bond between Miller and his men is forged in the beachhead assault on a German bunker, where his decisive action saved the day. It stars Alla Nazimova and Rudolph Valentino. Under intensely difficult circumstances, Miller displays a decisive and courageous manner to his soldiers - his suppressed nervousness is communicated only by his unsteady hands. Smallwood.

Miller, as played by Hanks, conceals his erstwhile profession of schoolteacher and his background from the troops under his command; the uncovering of Miller's background becomes a sub-plot of the film in as much as the men have a pool on his origins, which he steadfastly refuses to reveal. A 1921 version was adapted by June Mathis and directed by Ray C. Many critics commented that the film seemed marred somewhat by Spielberg's propensity for sentimentalism. It stars Theda Bara, Alan Roscoe, Walter Law, Glen White, Alice Gale, Claire Whitney and Richard Barthelmess. The general plot of the film, as the title suggests, is a humanitarian rescue mission led by John Miller, an army captain, played by Tom Hanks to return the last surviving Ryan brother from the Normandy front line to his mother. Gordon Edwards. The film was nominated for 11 Academy Awards, and won five: for Best Director, Best Film Editing (Michael Kahn), Best Cinematography, Best Sound, and Best Sound Effects Editing. In 1917 an American film was made, adapted by Adrian Johnson and directed by J.

Spielberg later pursued his interest in the Normandy campaign with the television mini-series Band of Brothers which he co-produced with Tom Hanks. It stars Hesperia, Alberto Collo and Ida Carloni Talli. The beachhead assault and the other battles shown in the movie have inspired many PC and video games, such as Unreal Tournament (1999), Return to Castle Wolfenstein, Medal of Honor: Allied Assault and Frontline, and Call of Duty, all of which have tried to re-create the famous D-day landing. It was directed by Baldassarre Negroni and Gustavo Serena. Thereafter it takes a very heavily fictionalised route built around the search for a particular member of the United States 101st Airborne Division. An Italian language film was also made in the same year, called La Signora delle camelie. The film is particularly notable for the intensity of the scenes in its first twenty minutes or so, which depict the Omaha beachhead assault of June 6, 1944. It was adapted by Frances Marion and directed by Albert Capellani, and stars Clara Kimball Young, Paul Capellani, Lillian Cook and Robert Cummings.

Saving Private Ryan is a 1998 film directed by Steven Spielberg dealing with the World War II Battle of Normandy. In 1915, an English language film, the first one to use the name Camille, was made. All ABC affiliates owned by the Sinclair Broadcast Group. It stars Sarah Bernhardt. WRIC-TV of Richmond, Virginia. In 1910, a French language silent film was made, directed by André Calmettes and Henri Pouctal. WCDC-TV of Adams, Massachusetts. Directed by Viggo Larsen, it stars Oda Alstrup, Larsen, Gustave Lund and Robert Storm Petersen.

WTEN-TV of Albany, New York. The first movie based on the work was a Danish silent film version in 1907 called Kameliadamen. WMUR-TV of Manchester, New Hampshire. Like the novel, the films tell the story of gay romance in Paris in the 1840s, and one young woman who wins the heart of a wealthy young man, but gives him up for his own good. KVUE-TV of Austin, Texas. The novel was also the basis for Giuseppe Verdi's opera La Traviata. WCPO-TV of Cincinnati, Ohio. Camille is the name of several films based on the 1852 novel and play La Dame aux Camélias by Alexandre Dumas, fils.

WGNO-TV of New Orleans, Louisiana. WSOC-TV in Charlotte, North Carolina. WHAS-TV of Louisville, Kentucky. KITV-TV in Honolulu, Hawaii.

WSB-TV in Atlanta, Georgia. WOI-TV in Des Moines, Iowa. Curracloe, Wexford, Ireland: D-Day scene. Hatfield, Hertfordshire.

World War II Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial: first and last scenes of the movie. Marshall. George C. Harve Presnell - Gen.

Walter Anderson. Col. Dennis Farina - Lt. William Hill.

Paul Giamatti - SSgt. Ted Danson - Captain Fred Hamill. Vin Diesel - Private Adrian Caparzo. Giovanni Ribisi - Private Irwin Wade, the medic of Miller's group.

Barry Pepper - Private Daniel Jackson, the sniper of Miller's group. Adam Goldberg - Private Stanley Mellish. He is presented as somewhat naïve and cowardly. Upham, added to Millers's team as an interpreter, speaking French and German.

Jeremy Davies - Corporal Timothy E. Matt Damon - Private James Ryan. Michael Horvath. Tom Sizemore - Sgt.

Edward Burns - Private Richard Reiben, from Brooklyn. Tom Hanks - Captain John Miller, a former schoolteacher.

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