Fearful Symmetry

Film. Books. Comics. TV. Music.

Band Of Brothers

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Band Of Brothers

Band Of Brothers

I remember watching Band of Brothers on the television a while back and not really getting it. In fact I gave up half way through the series. However recently I was compelled to go back to it (not least by playing the PC game Call of Duty). This time around I did get it. Before I think I was trying to concentrate on following every single character at all times. Which is just impossible. You only really need to keep track of a few major characters throughout the whole thing and the one minor character who will step up to take the lead for that episode. The story is really the story of a unit – a group of men – rather than one single man. Men die, or are injured out of the unit, coming back when they have recovered or are replaced by others but the unit goes on. The series is at its heart about how a group of disparate people bond during times of war and become ‘a band of brothers’.

Another factor in my initially disliking it is that because it’s based on a true story you can’t expect the usual dramatic arcs you would get from Hollywood (or even an independent film maker). You expect a bigger pay-off regarding the ‘sub-plot’ of the useless commander but it never really happens – he’s removed from power before he can do any real damage. Once I realised and accepted things like this I could appreciate it on its own terms.

The series is probably the best realisation of the Second World War thus far created. The fight scenes are truly breathtaking. In fact it’s lack, for the most part, of Hollywood sentiment works in its favour as you see the arbitrary nature of death in war, for deserving and undeserving both.

There is apparently a ‘War in the Pacific’ version being made at the moment and I’m very much looking forward to it.

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Written by Fearful Symmetry

July 19, 2009 at 11:13 am

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