Schindler’s List film paired with a tribute meal

Starring Liam Neeson, Ben Kingsley & Ralph Fiennes

Rating 10/10

Plot:

– The Jewish Ghetto is set up in Kraków. Families, singles, grandparents are all shoved into small rooms; 15000 into 3,167 rooms to be exact.
– Meanwhile, German businessman Oskar Schindler (Neeson) is living the high life with his Nazi Party buddies. He has moved into town to buy a factory. With very little money to his name he seeks out some rich Jewish fellas to help out with the finances. It is here he meets accountant Itzhak Stern (Kingsley) who becomes one of his closest friends.
– Eventually the Ghetto is liquified by the evil SS-Lieutenant Amon Goeth (Fiennes) who has a taste for blood and shoots for fun. He pops the people on trains and transports them to a work camp. Schindler, having witnessed the massacre at the Ghetto starts schmoozing Goeth so he can get his workers back and perhaps bring some justice back for the people.
-With the end of the war looming, trains full of prisoners are sent to Auschwitz. In order to save as many people as possible, Schindler writes a list. He bribes Goeth to free them to work in his alternate camp in Moravia, away from the murderous Final Solution campaign. The men are sent successfully, but something happens to the women…

Entree:

For obvious reasons, this is a difficult film to match with food – it’s so sad and harrowing, not really a jolly feasting kinda thing. But let’s pay tribute to the awesome Jewish people and celebrate their culture with some traditional Jewish food and remember the suffering they have experienced. So start with Chicken-Matzo Ball Soup.

Review:

It’s hard to believe that six million Jewish people were murdered throughout Adolf Hitler’s reign. It’s simply inconceivable. Men, women and children gassed and shot. Evil personified. This long, epic, graphic, moving film is heavy but it is so beautifully told, so poignant, so moving.

For the most part it is shot in black and white. Director Steven Spielberg uses shadow and colours to speak, to move the audience, to tell the story. I cannot fault any of the performances. Fiennes and Neeson are cast perfectly as Germans, and Kingsley, as usual, is perfection.

The best part of the film is the ending with a quiet scene with the Schindler survivors visiting the tomb of their hero – it really hits home and will leave you blubbering once again, as you should. And although it’s a tear-jerker, it’s one that you should not miss and that’s why I gave it 10/10.

Main meal:

Our main today is a beautiful one, to match a poignantly beautiful film. It is Pomegranate Brisket with Cranberry Succotash. Eat and remember.

Schindler’s List Trivia:

  • Budget – $22 Million (worth every cent!)
  • The Auschwitz authorities wouldn’t let Spielberg film inside its wall so he constructed a mirror image set facing the real place.
  • Leopold Pfefferberg, a Schindler list member, convinced Thomas Keneally to write Schindler’s story after Keneally was waiting for his credit card to clear in Leo’s shop. He took him out the back and showed him files on what had happened. And the rest is history
  • Schindler’s original list was found in a flat in Hildesheim in 1999.
  • The stones placed on Schindler’s grave at the end of the film come from a Jewish tradition. The stones are a sign of respect.
  • Fiennes put on 13kg for his role by drinking Guinness.
  • Much of the liquidation scene was based on real events ie when the man says he’s been ordered to clear the road of suitcases.
  • Spielberg refused to be paid, as he saw it as ‘blood money’.
  • Spielberg was hesitant to direct this film as he didn’t think he’d do a good enough job. He offered the gig to Roman Polanski who turned it down as it was too close to the bone. Polanski had lived in the Ghetto until he was 8.
  • Fiennes apparently looked so much like the real Goeth that when real survivor Mila Pfefferberg met him, she couldn’t stop shaking with fear.
  • Filming was completed in 72 days.
  • Spielberg makes a cameo appearance as a Schindler survivor walking across a field with everyone else.

Dessert:

For a super-sweet end to such a sad story make these amazing Baked Soufganiyot donuts from Culinary in the Country. They are so pretty and delicious-looking – a perfect end to a moving kinda night. Enjoy.

Baked donuts

Image: Bliss Tree

How did you feel at the end of this movie?

More great films with amazing food:

Forrest Gump movie matched with Southern food
* Shakespeare in Love movie paired with Elizabethan eats
A Beautiful Mind film paired with brain food

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