The movie begins when the American soldiers land on Omaha Beach on June 6, 1944, also known as D-Day.
This was part of the Allied invasion of Normandy, called “Operation Overlord”, when the Allies were assigned one of the five landings: Omaha, Juno, Sword, Gold and Utah. The American soldiers that the movie focuses on are from the 2nd Ranger Battalion of the 29th Infantry Division. The second part of the movie shows the majority of The Battle of Normandy, which was the invasion of Western Europe by American, British and Canadian forces. However, the film focuses primarily on the battles between the Americans and Germans. The plot of the movie includes eight American soldiers (Miller, Horvath, Reiban, Upham, Jackson, Mellish, Wade and Caparzo) who set out to find one specific soldier of the 101st Airborne Division, by the name of James Francis Ryan.
After discovering that all three of his brothers had been killed in the war, the US Army Chief of Staff assigns Captain Miller, along with his crew, to find Private Ryan and bring him home safely to his mother. After D-Day, the soldiers begin their journey through German occupied territory in France in search of the young soldier. When they finally do find him, Private Ryan refuses to return home until he and his soldiers are successful in preventing German tanks from taking over the bridge they are defending.
This leads to the fictional Battle of Ramelle, which was said to take place in the town of Ramelle, France on June 13, 1944 – one week after D-Day. Accuracy Overall, the film did a great job accurately displaying The Battle of Normandy and the horrors that came with it. The first battle scene shows soldiers praying to God, throwing up due to seasickness, and screaming in pain due to severe injuries – all of which display what how horrible the war truly was.
In our opinions, one of the most memorable parts of the movie is when one of the American soldiers, who is Jewish, has a breakdown after they find a Hitler Youth Knife. Later in the movie, this soldier has a chance to taunt the German soldiers, yelling “I am Juden” in their faces. This shows the reality of the effects of being Jewish during WWll. Although the Ryan family is fictional, the movie is actually based on the Niland brothers, four siblings who served in the American army during WWll. Three of these brothers (Robert, Preston and Edward) were killed in action, and their remaining brother, Fritz, was shipped safely back to America. However, Edward, who was originally thought to be dead, was actually found alive after escaping a Japanese prison camp in Burma, leaving two of the four brothers alive. One of the inaccuracies in the film was that the soldiers travelled mostly during the day.
In reality, they would have travelled mostly by nigh in order to avoid dangers. The soldiers are also shown wearing their helmets unbuckled, which would not be very uncommon because the soldiers knew that not wearing your helmet properly could result in serious injuries. Additionally, the film displays a lot of conversation between the soldiers, including conversation that disrespected the Captain Miller.
In truth, the soldiers would have never argued with their captain, and if they did, they would be punished quite harshly. However, the biggest historical inaccuracy of the film was the final Battle of Ramelle, which is actually a fictional battle, as there is actually no town in France called Ramelle. Examples of Bias Overall, Saving Private Ryan is credited with having very little bias that affects the historical context of the film. However, it still contains small examples of American bias. For example, despite Operation Overlord being a conjoined effort by the American, British and Canadian forces, the film only focused on the Americans.
Additionally, in the final battle, the American soldiers realistically would not have been successful in holding off the Germans, considering their disadvantage in numbers. In fact, the film both opens and closes with a short scene of the American flag waving in the sky. These minor examples of bias are most likely due to the fact that this is an American film, directed by the famous American director Steven Spielberg. Despite the American bias, we appreciated how the film made an effort in showing that the Germans were people too, and they were scared and desperate to go home to their families just as much as the Americans were.