BAND OF BROTHERS
To me, this is one of, if not the greatest Mini-Series ever produced. It was directed by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks in conjunction with DreamWorks studios for HBO in 2001. It is based on the book of the same title written by historian and biographer Stephen Ambrose. This 10 part mini-series tells us the story of “E” Easy Company, 506th Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division from their initial training starting in 1942 to the end of World War II. From Camp Toccoa, Georgia running up “Currahee Mountain” in the early part of their training to being parachuted behind enemy lines in the early hours of D-Day in support of the landings at Utah beach. This company participated in the liberation of Carentan and again parachuted into action during Operation Market Garden. They also liberated a concentration camp and were the first to enter Hitler’s mountain retreat in Berchtesgarten. A fascinating tale of comradeship that is, in the end, a tale of ordinary men who did extraordinary things.
Every Holiday season you can catch a replay of this series on either AMC or TruTV. This series is not for the faint of heart as the most realistic battle scenes take place. As former service member and as one who served in the Gulf War I can truly attest to the authenticity you experience when watching these scenes.
If this is not part of your collection then make it today!
Take this exchange at the end of the movie when Winters is reciting a conversation he has with his grandson. “Grandpa, were you a hero in the war?” Winters replies “No…But I served in a company of heroes…”. Every time I hear that closing line to this series I get a serious lump in my throat.
They reference one of a great line and it bodes well with this series. “We few, we happy few, web and of brothers. For he today that sheds his blood with me shall be my brother”.
Several great actors came together such as David Schwimmer, Ron Livingston, Damian Lewis, Scott Grimes, Donnie Wahlberg, Simon Pegg, Neal McDonough, Dale Dye, and Jason O’Mara. Even Tom Hanks makes a cameo appearance as a British Officer. If you where paying attention yes that is Simon Pegg, one of the latest up and coming actors from across the pond. He plays a vital role at the beginning of the series as the companies First Sergeant. The reason he got in is because a majority of this series was shot in the United Kingdom. Several American soldiers are in fact played by our British cousins. A bit of trivia you can use from this movie is that yes Late Night talk show host Jimmy Fallon is in this movie as well. He is in and out before you realize it’s him.
It’s something I watch at least twice a year and especially around Thanksgiving and the Holidays so I can be reminded of what I need to be Thankful for.