Great films are able to catch the viewers attention and create an emotional pull to the plot and characters. Sometimes the feelings are conflicted. You watch the film knowing there will be a showdown between good and evil, and yet you secretly harbor some empathy for the villain. As producer Heather Parry knows, making a quality is movie is about balancing the real with the imagined. It’s about creating a moment where illusion comes close to reality, but still remains just far enough away that the viewer is left feeling enriched or entertained. Sadly, the realities of life can’t always be ignored. For instance, consider some of the greatest films based on true stories that still can’t compare to the stunning details of reality.
1. Schindler’s List
Perhaps one of the most disturbingly accurate true story films about the Holocaust was Schindler’s List. Unless one has read the historical accounts of the activities and seen the footage, this movie is but a sobering glimpse in the nightmare of the Jewish people during Hitler’s time as the head of the Third Reich. What is more sobering, is that there is still an active manhunt for members of the German death squads who escaped after the way and resettled in other countries. In 2015, an Ohio autoworker was arrested and tried for war crimes committed at a German death camp. While some were empathetic for an old man being hauled off to court, others were incenses that such an individual could live and work among them.
2. Catch Me If You Can
While Leonardo de Caprio makes a dashing young wanna-be pilot in Catch Me If You Can, the real background to Frank Abagnale is less glamorous. Abagnale started shoplifting at sixteen, and after being sent to a home for wayward boys, ran away and began his life of crime. A master manipulator and creative genius, Abagnale successfully forged his way through life by creating documents that gave him entry into the world of aviation, law, and even healthcare. Even once he was caught, he managed to escape police custody and prison three times. By taking a deal by the FBI to help solve crimes of fraud and forgery, Abignale got his freedom. He has been working ever since helping people avoid becoming victims of fraud. He is considered one of the foremost security experts in the field.
These are only two of the most successful films revealing the struggle of human nature, but they are enough to stir up interest and attention. Films that deal with reality shouldn’t solely be about entertainment. To make a better future, we must learn from the past.