Urban Cinefile
"When doing a film like this, you have to get over that slightly glamorous feeling of playing a heroin addict, which I did after I started meeting some real addicts "  -Ewan McGregor on Trainspotting
 The World of Film in Australia - on the Internet Updated Wednesday, October 18, 2017 

Search SEARCH FOR A VIDEO_FILE
Our Review Policy OUR REVIEW POLICY
Printable page PRINTABLE PAGE

Help/Contact

DAS BOOT

SYNOPSIS:
After a debauched last night ashore, one of the famed German U boats, U-96, is sent off on a patrol into the Atlantic during World War II, with its crew of young seamen, and the more experienced, slightly world weary Captain (Jürgen Prochnow). On board is a green young war correspondent Werner (Herbert Grönmeyer) to report first hand on the heroic team of submariners, feared by the British navy as much as by the merchant ships crossing the Atlantic. But the patrol, which crosses a convoy of enemy ships, turns into something more harrowing than heroic than anyone anticipated, with the battles against nature and machine as traumatic as the battles against the enemy above.

“Petersen went on to direct In the Line of Fire, Outbreak and Air Force One – all very good, but Das Boot was his best ever. He argues that this new director’s cut, with the enhanced technology bringing the sound up to the max, is his ‘ideal version’ – and it’s hard to argue that it is indeed a sensational piece of work, even on the small screen, and even in the undisciplined environment of your home. This is a staggeringly good film, gripping and entertaining, tragic yet uplifting in its depiction of the human spirit. As an anti-war sentiment, it screams its message without having to spell it out; as a war adventure, it finds the perfect balance between the adrenalin and the fatigue of battle. Although in German (with readily legible and economical subtitles), the film works well on video, especially if you try to limit interruptions to the minimum; the unbroken tension adds greatly to the effect. Top performances, and the well developed characters – especially in this longer cut – together with fantastic detail, brings us into the very belly of U-96, almost smelling the mouldy air, feeling the sickening lurches of the depth charges and yearning for fresh air. Brilliant, moving filmmaking like this deserves a place on your shelf.”
Andrew L. Urban

__________________

Das Boot was made in 1981; in 1982, it became the most successful foreign language film ever released in the US, broke box office records and was nominated for six Oscars*. It was made with two outcomes in mind: an international theatrical release, and a six-hour German mini-series. That explains its US$40 million (in today’s value) price tag. Petersen went to extraordinary lengths to capture authenticity both physically and psychologically. A 250 man crew worked for two years and shot more than a million feet of film.

Plans for a Type VII C submarine were found in the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry and taken to a U boat manufacturer who had not handled such orders since 1945. Two full scale models were constructed to the exact specifications of the original: one for interiors in the studio, the other a seaworthy duplicate for exterior shooting off the French coast near la Rochelle, the actual port used by U-96.
The film is based on the memoirs of war correspondent Buccheim, who wrote first hand about the lives of the young men in the cramped metal tubes of war – the U boat.

* Oscar nominations for: Script, Direction, Cinematography, Editing, Sound, Sound FX Editing.

__________________

Email this article

__________________

AUSTRALIAN VIDEO DISTRIBUTOR: Columbia TriStar

AUSTRALIAN VIDEO RELEASE: AUGUST 19, 1998

RRP: $34.95 (Director's Cut)

__________________

DAS BOOT – THE DIRECTOR’S CUT
(Germany)

CAST: Jürgen Prochnow, Herbert Grönmeyer, Klaus Wennemann, Hubertus Bengsch, Martin Semmelrogge, Bernd Tauber, Erwin Leder
DIRECTOR: Wolfgang Petersen
PRODUCER: Ortwin Freyermuth (original film produced by Günther Rohrbach)
SCRIPT: Wolfgang Petersen (based on book by Lothar-Günther Buccheim)
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Jost Vacano
EDITOR: Hannes Nikel
MUSIC: Klaus Doldinger
PRODUCTION DESIGN: Rolf Zehetbauer
RUNNING TIME: 199 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Columbia Pictures
AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: 1997
AUSTRALIAN VIDEO RELEASE: August 20,1998







© Urban Cinefile 1997 - 2017