By Jacob de Figueiredo
A WORLD AT WAR
I’m a man who usually manages to shy away for any sense of maturity or realism about the world. I spend most of my days just straight up ignoring anything that’s related to the political world, close my eyes and bury my head in the sand at the first sign of any mature topic that crosses that happens to cross my path.
I’ve been living 2 months in London and at 23 years old I’m still buying cheap but surprisingly comfortable, (I’m talking serious package support I don’t know how they do it.) boxer shorts from Brixton Market instead of opting for the frankly more traditional method of using the washing machine.
I’ve got a serious inability to take anything seriously, and I mean it sometimes plays into my favour but most of the time my default mode, when faced with maturity or responsibility, is just to laugh and nervously smile and wait for the topic to pass and get lost into the deep abyss of my childish mind.
I feel like as a result of this a lot of my mindset and way of looking at the world has been born and is fully reflected in the majority of the content I watch. I spend my days reading comic books and fantasy novels, watching anime’s and cartoons. Anything that pulls on the heartstrings and is probably marketed towards a 13 year old Japanese school boy, you better believe I’m watching it.
So I decided to dive deep into the historical world. I sat down and enjoyed the first 60 minute episode of World at War 1973 – A New Germany (1933 – 1939).
A New Germany talks in great detail about the rebirth of Germany up to the outbreak of the world war. The World at War chronicles the draconian measures that Adolf Hitler took to become absolute dictator of Germany and begin his domination of Europe.
And I mean the series completely blew me away.
Never before have I seen such incredible documentary filmmaking. It’s 45 years old and destroys the documentaries of the present day. From narration to footage this documentary has it all. It pulls at the heartstrings of humanity and shows us what mankind is truly capable of when all normal rules of “civility” are completely removed.
Sir Laurence Olivier narrates the series and instead of usual modern documentary formula of screaming about the horrors of the topic in hand and flashing it in our faces the filmmakers take a back seat and let Olivier tell the true imagery of war; corpses, explosions, terrified citizens and soldiers, mistakes that cost thousands of lives, broken men. It’s raw and truthful but non biased and allows the viewer to uncover their own emotional thoughts and feelings.
Told through truly poetic narration, that was spellbinding and chilled me to the core.
The series opens on a beautiful stretch of empty road, on a misty summers morning which is met with an eerie silence.
“Down this road, on a summer day in 1944. The Soldier’s came. Nobody lives here now. They stayed only a few hours, then they had gone. A community which had lived here for a thousand years. Was dead.”
It’s the kind of documentary you just don’t seem to find anymore. It feels like a reflection of society and people’s longing for quick entertainment over something of real substance. But when met with true quality you can tell it seriously stands out above the rest.
This documentary has really opened my eyes to the possibilities of a different kind of story telling. Not constantly masking information with arty language and that weird urge to over complicate the truth. World at War is a real testament to the beauty of truth.
I seriously believe this should be shown throughout schools across the world so that the bigotry, hatred and greed of the World War will not repeat itself.
Hope everyone had a lovely Christmas and new year xxxxx