War and Remembrance 5 - 11.2.1942 - 12.1.1942
Video Codec..........: XviD ISO MPEG-4
Video Bitrate........: 880kbps
Audio Codec..........: 0x0055 MPEG-1 Layer 3
Audio Bitrate........: 113 kbps VBR
Audio Channels.......: 2
Filename.............: War and Remembrance 5 - 11.2.1942 - 12.1.1942.avi
**NOTE** - Something is wrong with either these discs or my use of the SubRip .srt file generator, but every attempt I have made with this series to create functional subtitles has failed. Therefore, I am giving up on them for this series. Please leave no comments regarding subtitles, as there seems to be nothing I can do about it.
War and Remembrance is the second WW2 miniseries based Herman Woukâ€™s books, the first being The Winds of War. Both examine the entire war from prelude to aftermath, principally by following the experiences of the fictional Henry and Jastrow families. The notes below are from Wikipedia.
War and Remembrance completes the cycle that began with The Winds of War. The story includes historical occurrences at Midway, Yalta, Guadalcanal, and El Alamein as well as the Allied invasions at Normandy and the Philippines.
The action moves back and forth between the characters against the backdrop of World War II: Victor (Pug) Henry takes part in various battles while separating from his wife. Pug's older son Warren, a naval aviator, and Pug's younger son Byron, a submarine officer, also participate in combat. Warren is killed at the battle of Midway. Byron's wife Natalie is trapped in Axis territory with her uncle, celebrated author Aaron Jastrow, and another major strand focuses on their story as Jews caught in Europe. Like most Americans, Natalie and Aaron fail to believe that the civilized German culture with which they are familiar could possible engage in genocide. As a result of their rash decision to stay when they could escape, they gradually get absorbed into the Jewish population that is first interned, then sent to concentration camps. As Byron attempts to find out what is happening to them, eventually tracking them down amidst the chaos of wartime Europe, the story of the Holocaust is gradually revealed to the American government and people.
Since Wouk was happy with the Winds of War adaptation, he allowed Dan Curtis to adapt the sequel as well. The story became a successful mini-series on the ABC television network in 1988, in which several main characters were played by different actors than in The Winds Of War. The series at the time was praised as stunning, but long (Some critics referred to it as "the War that Never Ends.") It had to be broken into two segments, chapters Iâ€“VII and VIIIâ€“XII ("The Final Chapter") with a combined running time of about 30 hours. Former concentration-camp internee Branko Lustig was a producer on the series. The visual design and cinematography was praised for its unflinching presentation.
The series broke ground in its depiction of the Holocaust. Curtis himself first had to get ABC to promise him that he would be able to show the full brutality and horror of the Holocaust without being edited. The crew also got permission to shoot the Auschwitz scenes on location.
The main Holocaust scenes include
â€¢ A mass slaughter of Jews and Czechs outside Prague by machine-gun fire, carried out by an Einsatzgruppe.
â€¢ An introduction to the Auschwitz-Birkenau-camp and its commander Rudolf Hoess where they carry out decision to test Zyklon B first on a group of 900 Soviet POWs. After the test, HÃ¶ÃŸ and one of his subalterns sit down for a drink. The subaltern asks, "Suppose Germany loses the war?" At this point, both men gulp down their Schnapps.
â€¢ A visit of Heinrich Himmler to Auschwitz in May 1942. This gruesome sequence followed the procedure from the arrival of the Jewish victims in trains to the disposal of the bodies, with extreme violence and nudity. This segment was also shown without commercial interruption. After the successful completion of this "special action," Eichmann gives HÃ¶ÃŸ a field promotion from SturmbannfÃ¼hrer to ObersturmbannfÃ¼hrer.
â€¢ The building of the crematorium in Auschwitz.
â€¢ Aktion 1005, the German attempt to cover all traces of mass executions in the East by digging up the graves and burning the bodies.
â€¢ The Babi Yar massacre.
â€¢ The Theresienstadt concentration camp is featured prominently in the "Final Chapter" episodes. It had been designed as a concentration camp that could be shown to the Red Cross, but it was really a Potemkin village: attractive at first, but deceptive and ultimately lethal, with high death rates from malnutrition and contagious diseases, and it ultimately served as a way-station to Auschwitz-Birkenau.
â€¢ A long sequence shows the travel by train from Theresienstadt to Auschwitz, the arrival, the final selection, and the death in the gas chamber of Aaron Jastrow.
Several actors were changed between The Winds of War and War and Remembrance. Actor John Houseman played Aaron Jastrow in Winds of War, but was too frail for War and Remembrance's lengthy production schedule. He died of spinal cancer in 1988, the year W&R was broadcast. He was replaced by Sir John Gielgud. Jane Seymour was cast as Mrs. Natalie Henry in place of Ali McGraw after Seymour campaigned for the role and made a screen test. Dan Curtis was struck by her performance and immediately cast her in the vital role. Because the miniseries was shot out of sequence, producers could not cut Jane Seymour's hair for the scenes in the concentration camp. Make-up artists took shears to a full scalp wig for her to wear for those scenes instead. The actor Jan-Michael Vincent, who played Byron Henry in the Winds of War, was busy in American television series as an action lead (Airwolf). It is hinted in the featurette on the Winds of War DVDs that Vincent's drinking made him difficult on set. He was replaced by Hart Bochner. Other major replacements include Sharon Stone as Janice, Leslie Hope as Madeleine, Michael Woods as Warren, Robert Morley as Alistair Tudsbury, Barry Bostwick as Aster and Steven Berkoff replacing Gunther Meisner as Adolf Hitler.
Major cast of characters
â€¢ Robert Mitchum .... Capt. Victor 'Pug' Henry
â€¢ Jane Seymour .... Natalie Henry
â€¢ Hart Bochner .... Byron Henry
â€¢ Victoria Tennant .... Pamela Tudsbury
â€¢ Polly Bergen .... Rhoda Henry
â€¢ David Dukes .... Leslie Slote
â€¢ Michael Woods .... Warren Henry
â€¢ Sharon Stone .... Janice Henry
â€¢ Robert Morley .... Alistair Tudsbury
â€¢ Barry Bostwick .... 'Lady' Aster
â€¢ Sami Frey .... Avram Rabinovitz
â€¢ Topol .... Berel Jastrow
â€¢ John Rhys-Davies .... Sammy Mutterperl
â€¢ Ian McShane .... Philip Rule
â€¢ William Schallert .... Harry Hopkins
â€¢ Bill Wallis .... Werner Beck
â€¢ Jeremy Kemp .... Brig. Gen. Armin Von Roon
â€¢ Steven Berkoff .... Adolf Hitler
â€¢ E.G. Marshall .... Dwight D. Eisenhower
â€¢ Robert Hardy .... Winston Churchill
â€¢ Ralph Bellamy .... President Franklin Delano Roosevelt
â€¢ John Gielgud .... Aaron Jastrow
â€¢ Peter Graves .... Palmer Kirby
â€¢ Barry Morse .... Col. Gen. Franz Halder
â€¢ Hardy KrÃ¼ger...Field Marshal Erwin Rommel
â€¢ Leslie Hope .... Madeline Henry
Making the miniseries
This huge two part miniseries was said to have been the 'last of the miniseries.' War and Remembrance had a multi-year production timeline, and it took over ABC's broadcast schedule for two one-week periods in 1988. Miniseries had been major events on American television, reserved for 'important' stories like Jesus of Nazareth (1977) and The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich (1968). Shortly after this period, cable television began the fragmentation of the US broadcasting audience in earnest, leaving War and Remembrance as the last of the giant miniseries. In previous years, there were only the Big Three broadcasting networks in the United States, ABC, NBC and CBS.
The former's decision to dedicate two weeks of its broadcasting schedule to War and Remembrance was a big financial investment. It became the costliest single-story undertaking in US television, costing $104 million and totalling 30 prime-time hours.
Filmed from January 1986 to September 1987, the 1,492 page script by Earl W. Wallace contained 2,070 scenes. There were 757 sets: 494 in Europe, including France, Italy, Austria, Yugoslavia, Switzerland, West Germany, England, and Poland, and 263 in the United States (including Hawaii) and Canada. There were 358 speaking parts in the script; 30,310 extras were employed in Europe and 11,410 in the United States. It was the first film production granted permission to film inside the Auschwitz concentration camp. Scenes set in Russia were filmed in Montreal in temperatures reaching 40 degrees below zero Celsius.
Members of the US Army, stationed in Berchtesgarden, Germany, at the time of the filming were hired as extras for some of the Eagle's Nest (Kehsteinhaus) scenes. The battleship USS New Jersey was used for filming.