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Germans - What do you guys feel when watching WWII films?

Discussion in 'Serious' started by Pete J, 16 Jul 2020.

  1. Pete J

    Pete J Unemployed dole scum

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    I have a difficult question for any Germans who frequent the forums. I was listening to 'Fury' while I was setting up my Lego this morning, and the question that formed in my head was:

    'What do you guys feel when watching WWII films?"

    To give you my thoughts (if I dare to be so arrogant):
    1. Perhaps a bit weirdly, I don't associate the Nazis with Germany today. I just see them as 'the bad guys'.
    2. I will however freely admit I love to make obscene jokes based on WWII, but my sense of humour is quite cruel (Frankie Boyle is my hero).
    3. The only film I can think off the top of my head that portrays the British in a bad way (because OBVIOUSLY, just like EVERY other country, we've only ever had one bad moment) is 'Braveheart'. However, when watching Braveheart, I don't really see the English as 'me' - instead, just being the bad guys. I actually see the Scottish as myself, mainly because I like to think I have the same principles.
    4. Perhaps a bit off topic, but I think to think that what happened would only have happened in Germany is incredibly naive. Part of me wonders if other countries like to bring it up just because they're secretly worried that they could've so easily gone down the same path. Indeed, if Germany hadn't I really do reckon the UK or the US would've done something similar.
    Anyway, over to you...
     
  2. Spraduke

    Spraduke Lurker

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    Not German, but the way the US is heading has shocking parallels to the rise of the Nazi party. The ease in which people can be indoctrinated to a completely irrational view points (with plenty of hate thrown in) is scary.

    Back on topic: There are indeed a lack of movies portraying a more balanced perspective of WW2 as lets be real, plenty of atrocities occurred on both sides and the average soldier was just fighting for his country without necessarily supporting the views held by leaders.
     
  3. silk186

    silk186 Derp

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    This would get more responses on Reddit

    Because war movies are generally state-sponsored propaganda to promote nationalism and enrollment. That's why can get military equipment like aircraft carriers and fighter jets in the movies. So, US films are pro-US, Chinese films are pro-China ect.
     
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  4. David

    David Take my advice — I’m not using it.

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    Yeah, which films? All Quiet on the Western Front?

    Downfall?

    Perspective is everything.
     
    Last edited: 16 Jul 2020
  5. Pete J

    Pete J Unemployed dole scum

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    I'm more interested in hearing responses from forumites I feel I've got to know, rather than a potential cesspit. Quality over quantity.
    Good point.

    I'd say the more gung-ho films. Fury, Saving Private Ryan,..
     
  6. liratheal

    liratheal Sharing is Caring

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    I asked my girlfriend, although her immediate response was "I don't watch war films".

    She did elaborate a little in that, as far as she's aware, there's either no or not many depictions of the Germans as heroic and that it's depicted accurately. IE: Germans are the badguys.

    IME here there's a very hush hush national pride that only comes out in 'world' level sporting events like the football world cup stuff. It's only during those times that I see German flags regularly. Mostly they're few and far between for being flown.

    There's definitely no issue of hero worship for military personnel.

    She's said that her grandfather (Mothers side) was in a branch of the military during the war, but apparently he refused to talk about any of it. Unsure how far along he went with the Nazi-ism.. Although if there was any residual belief by the time he had kids it doesn't appear to have passed on to them.
     
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  7. Pete J

    Pete J Unemployed dole scum

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    @liratheal Thanks for asking her! The victors get to write history etc.

    I do think it's unfair on German military personnel, as I imagine the majority were simply fighting for their friends and family and had little to no knowledge of the true horrors being committed.

    I'm going to think more on this.
     
  8. liratheal

    liratheal Sharing is Caring

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    Ehh..

    I'm not so sure. I think the allied powers have become a little.. Too hero worship-y of military employees. It's fair enough to have a respect for their chosen career, but I'm a little uncomfortable with how far the hero worship is going in that realm. Perhaps because of the current political climate, it's starting to sound a bit too jingoism-y to me.

    It's not like current service people are vilified, but I'm not one and only peripherally know one, so perhaps I'm oblivious to it.

    I'd liked to have known, although I dare say I couldn't have asked (Being British and all), what her grandfather knew during and then after the war, and what he thought about it. I don't get the impression he was the kind of bad guy that gets associated with the traditional depiction of Nazi's in the movies, but all I have to go on is what I get told about him, so I guess there could be some rose tinted glasses going on too.

    I wonder, although not enough to google it, whether there's a line drawn in the sand as to at what point someone who fought for the Nazi's couldn't be held responsible. I dare say an infantryman who objected to the horrific **** going on would have been bundled into the next camp-bound vehicle and forgotten about. Although I guess that'd have happened no matter the rank. Hm.
     
    Last edited: 19 Jul 2020
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  9. enbydee

    enbydee Active Member

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    I wonder if there's a South African technology forum asking what Brits feel about movies regarding the Second Boer War.
     
  10. Mr_Mistoffelees

    Mr_Mistoffelees The Cat Lies Down on Broadway

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    It's the same here. Look at how readily people jumped on Farage's Islamophobic, racist, xenophobic and homophobic bandwagon.
     
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  11. sandys

    sandys Well-Known Member

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    Not German but I was once working with a young German guy and after a night out on the lash after a big project he started apologizing to me for the war, which I found completely surreal and a little uncomfortable really because whilst I know the history, I'll be honest, for me that is where it belongs and I don't care to talk about it, it's not like it happened to me so anything I have to say about it has little value, this guy was younger than me and it was most definitely on his mind so I guess he would care a little more about his portrayal.
     
  12. mrlongbeard

    mrlongbeard Well-Known Member

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    I grew up watching ww2 films every weekend, I never knew / met either of my grandfather's because of ww2.

    It's still a delicate point for many.
    [​IMG]
     
  13. David

    David Take my advice — I’m not using it.

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    It's not a forum that's asking. It's one person on a forum, so it's entirely possible a member on SA-Tech.net/forum has asked that question. :p
     
  14. bawjaws

    bawjaws Well-Known Member

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    Apologies for the digression from the theme of this thread, but: by British, do you mean English? There wasn't a British nationality in the 13th / 14th century, and Braveheart is sympathetic to the Scots whilst painting the English as the baddies.

    It's a real pet peeve of mine when people conflate England with Britain, and especially in this context where the point being made depends on clear distinction being made between the two.
     
  15. Pete J

    Pete J Unemployed dole scum

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    @bawjaws ahh, correct. Part of not really having common interactions with Welsh/Scottish/Irish people I suppose.
     
  16. Yaka

    Yaka Well-Known Member

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    prolly only one film that gives nazi's/WWII era Germans as actual humans is the awesome Das Boat
     
  17. David

    David Take my advice — I’m not using it.

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    One of my favourite films - seen it a dozen times, at least.

    Das Boot didn't really focus on sides i.e. the allies vs the axis - the conflict was much more focused, almost personal.
     

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