Few movies are as depressing, or are as effective as Schindler’s List, directed by Steven Spielberg. The film stays with you long after you watch it, and a first time viewing is guaranteed to have you in tears by the end. The music used in this film plays a major part in that.
Aside from assembling an all-star cast, including Liam Neeson, Ben Kingsley, and Ralph Fiennes, Spielberg used John Williams, a composer who is arguably the greatest soundtrack music writer of our lifetime, to write the score. To play the violin in certain pieces, the famed Itzhak Perlman was there as well.
The main title gives a perfect example at what the music and mood would be throughout the film, but not one piece of music would be as haunting as Perlman’s play in Auschwitz-Birkenau. This is perhaps the most saddening scene in the movie, as the music is being played as a large group of women and young girls are calmly led to one of the gas chambers, and the doors are sealed.
This movie is one of my personal favorites, because of how well made it is, and because of how effective it is. When going through the school system, students are shown this film in one class or another, and some have seen it multiple times in class alone. I have seen it so many times that I have almost become de-sensitized to how sad it really is, but when I become a history teacher a few years from now, you can be sure I’ll be showing it in class, just like everyone else.
Other Films on this List