No. of Recommendations: 3
Um, how can a true story be "clichéd"?

I doubt very very very much that all the events depicted in that movie are based on Schindler's life during WWII. The basic frame of the story might be very true but here are examples that I remember from when I saw the movie (during theatrical release):

Woman is telling camp workers that they are building the thing wrong, head dude shoots her and tells camp workers to do it her way.

Guards interrogating prisoners in a line, shoot one of them, little boy says that he knows the guilty party and points to recently shot guy.

Head Nazi lazily sniping prisoners in the camp.

The final speech. Oh, that speech!

The Ben Kinsley character, every second he was on screen and everything he did.

The framing scenes before and after the whole black-and-white movie.

The sexual menace directed at the secretary woman by head Nazi dude that was obviously never going to go beyond that.

I hated the lame red-dress girl but I understand not everyone was watching a bunch of pre-color films at that time and seeing the same technique repeated. (It was popular to "paint" frames colors or color certain elements in the film before color photography came down in price.)

Speaking of the red dress girl, Schindler supposedly has his epiphany while riding a horse and seeing the rounding up and devastation of people's lives in the distance. A well-honored trick to remove the audience from emotional involvement in a scene is to film it as if it takes place in the distance. Spielberg fakes this by going in closer and showing details that Schindler could not have seen. Maybe I'm just forgetting the binoculars he used but that scene struck me as a cheat and seemed to gloss the fact that Schindler was in that muck earlier.

So, yeah, the story of a bad businessman saving some people's lives is nice and all but the movie about it was just not good. At the time, I believe Malaysia censored the film as "Jewish propaganda". I do not agree with the censorship, or that there is anything wrong with propaganda Jewish or otherwise, but I still think that is an accurate assessment of the movie. Without the built-in emotional weight of WWII and the Holocaust the movie was a nothing trifle. Think about this; imagine there was no holocaust or true story or that this was a science fiction story instead. How much of the movie is lost if the extra-element, true-storiness is taken away?

Most, all?

The movie pulled its gravity from history but fills its screentime with cheap ploys, cribbed from dozens of movies and stories before. The dichotomy between the loftiness the movie was attempting and the dreck it was shoveling to get there became amusing well before Schindler's heartwarming speech melted the hearts of war-weary, German soldiers causing them to disobey direct orders and spare the lives of strangers.

Oh, some more:
The head Nazi guy yelling out Heil Hitler or Germany before being hanged.

Every scene with the little scamp and his resourcefulness.

Every Jew in the camp was a wonderful, full person except that they were completely two-dimensional like everyone else in the movie.

How clean and nice the camp looked.

The smoke from the candle.
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