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Culture Forum

  1. Standard member Blackamp
    Death
    14 Nov '09 13:27 / 1 edit
    has anybody watched this excellent 70s British-made documentary series about WW2? i think the entire series runs to over 30 hours, much of it narrated by Laurence Olivier. i've been watching the two episodes dedicated to the holocaust. harrowing stuff (of course), but one thing that really struck me concerned footage from the Warsaw Ghetto. i experienced a shock of recognition, as some scenes looked very similar to scenes from Polanski's The Pianist - i guess the set designers were working closely from actual footage. the first episode traces the evolution of the idea of the final solution, while episode two focuses more on its execution and the massive human misery it caused. excellent series imo.
  2. 14 Nov '09 14:07
    Fantastic series, it has been shown here in Australia several times but not very recently. I've just been watching the 1954 series "Victory at Sea" as produced by NBC with the assistance of the United States Navy. Well worth a look at.
  3. 14 Nov '09 19:38 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by Blackamp
    has anybody watched this excellent 70s British-made documentary series about WW2? i think the entire series runs to over 30 hours, much of it narrated by Laurence Olivier. i've been watching the two episodes dedicated to the holocaust. harrowing stuff (of course), but one thing that really struck me concerned footage from the Warsaw Ghetto. i experienced a wo focuses more on its execution and the massive human misery it caused. excellent series imo.
    how objective is it, for i find, that in many instances, we have what's termed a victors account. take for example the notorious ss, it is well known that they committed many terrible atrocities, how well known is it that they also had humanitarian programs as well, albeit for those whom they favoured? What of the accounts of the bombing of Dresden, or the terrible suffering of the Germans left in Berlin, the rape of the defenceless women at the hands of the Russians etc etc.
  4. 14 Nov '09 20:05 / 1 edit
    It's a brilliant series but as Robbie points out, not the whole truth. Nevertheless, in my humble opinion it remains one of the best televised chronologies and a fantastic watch.

    Is it available on DVD?
  5. 14 Nov '09 21:18
    Originally posted by divegeester
    It's a brilliant series but as Robbie points out, not the whole truth. Nevertheless, in my humble opinion it remains one of the best televised chronologies and a fantastic watch.

    Is it available on DVD?
    yes i checked it out, you can get the box set of Amazon for thirty quid!
  6. 15 Nov '09 00:57
    Originally posted by Blackamp
    has anybody watched this excellent 70s British-made documentary series about WW2? i think the entire series runs to over 30 hours, much of it narrated by Laurence Olivier. i've been watching the two episodes dedicated to the holocaust. harrowing stuff (of course), but one thing that really struck me concerned footage from the Warsaw Ghetto. i experienced a ...[text shortened]... wo focuses more on its execution and the massive human misery it caused. excellent series imo.
    Excellent series indeed. It could have been longer and possibly an uncut version exists out there somewhere. If you want to supllement your knowledge of the period read Rise and Fall of the Third Reich by William L. Shirer . The quintessential book of the period. I prefer reading to documentaries, but have watched the whole thing. At the time it was made not as much was known about the flying death squads and massacres like Babi Yar are mentioned in passing. Also Soviet massacres like Katyn Forest are not brought up so as to not piss off the Ruskies.
  7. Standard member Blackamp
    Death
    15 Nov '09 03:50
    Originally posted by robbie carrobie
    how objective is it, for i find, that in many instances, we have what's termed a victors account. take for example the notorious ss, it is well known that they committed many terrible atrocities, how well known is it that they also had humanitarian programs as well, albeit for those whom they favoured? What of the accounts of the bombing of Dresden ...[text shortened]... Germans left in Berlin, the rape of the defenceless women at the hands of the Russians etc etc.
    ye, that's always a concern with war histories. i have seen pretty much the whole series but a long time ago - the only episodes i've watched recently are the holocaust ones and, while it certainly doesn't seek to excuse this terrible episode in human history, it does seem like a serious attempt to understand it and its roots. it does look at the history and "philosophy" behind the SS fairly closely, though i don't think it mentions humanitarian programs, at least not in this episode.
  8. Subscriber FMF
    Main Poster
    15 Nov '09 06:58
    Originally posted by scacchipazzo
    If you want to supllement your knowledge of the period read Rise and Fall of the Third Reich by William L. Shirer . The quintessential book of the period.
    A fine book. But perhaps no longer the quintessential one. It may have been usurped by Michael Burleigh's "The Third Reich: A New History".
  9. 16 Nov '09 22:48
    Originally posted by Blackamp
    has anybody watched this excellent 70s British-made documentary series about WW2? i think the entire series runs to over 30 hours, much of it narrated by Laurence Olivier. i've been watching the two episodes dedicated to the holocaust. harrowing stuff (of course), but one thing that really struck me concerned footage from the Warsaw Ghetto. i experienced a ...[text shortened]... wo focuses more on its execution and the massive human misery it caused. excellent series imo.
    Watched all of them in the early days of the VCR--at least early by my standards. I rented them from the local Pic-a-Flick. Great series.
  10. 17 Nov '09 02:46
    Originally posted by Blackamp
    has anybody watched this excellent 70s British-made documentary series about WW2? i think the entire series runs to over 30 hours, much of it narrated by Laurence Olivier. i've been watching the two episodes dedicated to the holocaust. harrowing stuff (of course), but one thing that really struck me concerned footage from the Warsaw Ghetto. i experienced a ...[text shortened]... wo focuses more on its execution and the massive human misery it caused. excellent series imo.
    Great series, one of my favorites. Cosmos was another great series.
  11. 18 Nov '09 03:56
    Originally posted by FMF
    A fine book. But perhaps no longer the quintessential one. It may have been usurped by Michael Burleigh's "The Third Reich: A New History".
    Thank you for the book rec. I will read and decide.
  12. Standard member expuddlepirate
    Exaulted high possum
    15 Dec '09 08:07
    Originally posted by scacchipazzo
    Thank you for the book rec. I will read and decide.
    Albert Speer's two works are old but VERY good reads on that period. "Spandau; the Secret diaries" and "Inside the Third Reich".
  13. 15 Dec '09 12:29
    Originally posted by expuddlepirate
    Albert Speer's two works are old but VERY good reads on that period. "Spandau; the Secret diaries" and "Inside the Third Reich".
    Thanks for the rec's. I will most definitely look these up. The man intrigues me from the standpoint of his ability to rationalize his misdeeds and ability to self promote even to the point of avoiding the gallows like the other Nazi bigs! BTW, I got Burleigh's book from the library and I do not think it adds much to Shirer's magnus opus! INdeed the old books were much better reads as they were much better writes!
  14. Subscriber FMF
    Main Poster
    16 Dec '09 07:03
    Originally posted by scacchipazzo
    I got Burleigh's book from the library and I do not think it adds much to Shirer's magnus opus!
    I thought Burleigh got to the heart of the whole thing of the Nazi phenomenon being a surrogate religion rather than a mere political ideology - and thus, for me, encapsulated the psychological horror of it all more tellingly than Shirer. But they are both very worthy books, for sure.
  15. Standard member DrKF
    incipit parodia
    16 Dec '09 22:35
    Originally posted by scacchipazzo
    Thanks for the rec's. I will most definitely look these up. The man intrigues me from the standpoint of his ability to rationalize his misdeeds and ability to self promote even to the point of avoiding the gallows like the other Nazi bigs! BTW, I got Burleigh's book from the library and I do not think it adds much to Shirer's magnus opus! INdeed the old books were much better reads as they were much better writes!
    Have you read Gitta Sereny's Albert Speer: His Battle With Truth? A simply incredible book - it affected me quite deeply when I was younger.