Produced by: Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg
Premise: A ten-part HBO miniseries about an Allied army company in France just after the D-Day invasion.
What Works: The film is styled very much like Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan, using handheld cinematography, realistic gore and violence, and intense action sequences. This series has terrific production values to it; Band of Brothers could have easily played as a major Hollywood picture. The series follows its characters equally. No one soldier emerges as a lead in the series but rather the episodes focus on how the company interacts with each other and the situations that they face.
What Doesn’t: Although the idea of the series is to focus on the men as a whole, viewers looking for a traditional, hero-centered story may be a little let down. Some of the episodes do get repetitive as they follow a familiar pattern.
DVD Extras: Each disc includes biographies on the characters and an interactive field guide. There are also documentaries and featurettes about the company and the making of the series.
Bottom Line: Band of Brothers is an incredible TV accomplishment. Its more dramatic scenes are reminiscent of the somber moments in the M*A*S*H* television series and its action sequences hold up with anything Hollywood has produced about World War II. Recommended for fans of Saving Private Ryan or From the Earth to the Moon.
Episode: #98 (May 28, 2006)