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World War Two in HD

This is possibly one of my greatest possessions. I bought it 2 years ago, but haven’t watched it until recently. I was waiting for a moment when I had enough time as I knew it was something to be taken seriously and not just put on will I did other things.

Gary Sinise is the narrator for the general film and a number of other actors narrate the stories of the people who are highlighted in the film. The footage is all top class. Having seen a great many WWII documentaries I’ve seen countless hours of film over the years and yet much, if not all, of what is features here is new to me.

The film is an emotional roller coaster. You’ll feel pride in America, and the people who’s stories you hear, and you’ll feel sad and grossed-out at the scenes of death and wounding. There are a number of scenes that made me squirm just a bit. I dislike watching sports injuries because I can almost feel the pain(Joe Theismann), so seeing bandages removed and the burnt, mangled bodies beneath them is unpleasant, but something that should be seen. There is an interesting part in the film when Robert Sherrod, a reporter with the Marines at Tarawa, told FDR that a documentary on the events should be shown uncensored to show people the reality of the far off war. Roosevelt had to approve the documentary, which he did, because the material was to harsh for producers to release.

However don’t get the impression the film is all blood and guts. Most of the footage is nothing of the sort.

One of the more interesting things to see is the early training cuts. When draft reportees are being drilled and can barely march, let alone hold a rifle. They literally are a bunch of klutzes. Added to that many scenes with shirtless GI’s who cut an unimpressive figure and you wonder just how they managed to win on two fronts.¬† It says something about the world when millions and millions of uncoordinated and wimpy looking kids were each given a gun, tank, or airplane without any experience with such things and yet today kids who grow up with their hands on everything imaginable in the form of toys and videogames can’t be trusted with a slingshot. It’s not even just the kids, but all of society that apparently can’t be trusted. My how standards have fallen.

Socialism and Priorities

I just saw a documentary called Bulletproof Salesman. It is about a German armored car merchant who made money off the wars in Iraq in Afghanistan by building and selling armored vehicles to diplomats, news media, and the like. It’s interesting, non-political, but if you have other things to do, do those first or just have the film on while doing those things if you can.

Anyway, as I was watching the film I noticed work crews in Afghanistan tending to the road after a car bombing. As the road was mostly just a track in the dirt I thought, “gee these guys don’t even have paved roads and we think we’re going to change them?” Then I thought, well we’re probably spending a few hundred million at least to pave a few roads no doubt and it made me think of the free market system.

The Afghans don’t have paved roads cause they don’t need paved roads. Their economy doesn’t require it and when it does they’ll figure it out, until then there is no need to meddle with things they don’t need, that they won’t take care of, and will prove to be a waste of money.

Just another example that socialism doesn’t work. You can shower all kinds of luxuries on one of the worlds worst countries but that doesn’t change anything. It’s not that the Afghans have absolutely no need for roads, it’s that they have more pressing matters to deal with and roads aren’t one of them. I keep using roads as an example, but it can be anything. Cable television, internet, toys, barbershops, whatever their priorities are they’ll take care of it first. The only way they won’t take care of what they need first is if their government takes all their money, and ability to do anything for itself, which our efforts are only encouraging.

 

Senna

Ayrton Senna was one of the greatest racing drivers the world has ever seen. Possibly it’s most talented.

He died at age 34 at the Imola circuit in 1994 at the now infamous Tamburello corner.

A few years ago I read a biography title Aryton Senna by Christopher Hilton. It was an interesting and fairly comprehensive book about a man who has not had many biographers.

In 2010 a documentary titled Senna was released, it won many awards though was not a well publicized film. I recently watched this film and it was one of the best I have ever seen. Not just one of the best documentaries, but best films ever.

Even if you don’t follow racing and aren’t familiar with the details you will still be amazed by the story in the film. Besides being a great driver what makes the Senna story so incredible is the rise to glory and its tragic end. The chronicle of Senna’s meteoric rise in Formula 1 is only matched by one of the darkest weekends in the sports history. It is a rather eery feeling that the man who would be king almost knew that he would die in a race car and that that weekend was the time for it.

If it is at all possible please go watch this movie. Check your local library, Walmart, Amazon. I promise you’ll enjoy it.