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Uprising (2001)

Leelee Sobieski , Hank Azaria , Jon Avnet  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (106 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Leelee Sobieski, Hank Azaria, David Schwimmer, Jon Voight, Donald Sutherland
  • Directors: Jon Avnet
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: December 18, 2001
  • Run Time: 180 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (106 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005QAQI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #40,651 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Uprising" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Two documentaries: Resistance - a historical documentary about real Uprising
  • survivors Kazik and Eddleman and Breaking Down the Walls: The Road to Re-creating the Warsaw Ghetto documentary with behind-the-scenes footage
  • Audio commentary by director and executive producer Jon Avnet
  • Audio commentary with Leelee Sobieski, Hank Azaria, David Schwimmer and Jon Voight
  • Web enabled for DVD-ROM PC users

Editorial Reviews

After Germany invades Poland in 1939, the Nazis decree that 350,000 Warsaw Jews be forcibly moved into a cordoned area known as the Warsaw Ghetto. Idealistic teacher Mordechai Anielewicz (Hank Azaria) decides the Jews must rise up against the Nazis and creates the Jewish Fighting Organization (JFO). He tries to secure the support of Adam Czerniakow (Donald Sutherland), the morally conflicted head of the Warsaw Ghetto's Jewish Council, but Adam declines because he knows that any act of resistance will provoke the Germans to retaliate by killing innocent Jews. Determined to mobilize a resistance alone if he has to, Mordechai recruits his friends and covert couriers whose ability to pass as Aryan helps them smuggle in arms and explosives from the Aryan side of the city, building up an arsenal to fight the Nazis.

When the Germans begin deporting 300,000 Jews to the Treblinka death camp, the JFO begins acts of resistance that culminate with ghetto fighters firing their first gunshots against the Nazis. When it becomes clear that the JFO is a force to be reckoned with, the German High Command sends in General Stroop (Jon Voight), who is determined to end the uprising in two or three days.

Capturing the horror that unfolds is Fritz Hippler (Cary Elwes), a filmmaker assigned by Hitler's chief propagandist to promote anti-Semitism with a film about Jewish life in the ghetto.

When the Nazis continue to suffer more casualties in their battle with the ghetto fighters, General Stroop decides to raze the ghetto. But even that can't stop the JFO. Forced to go underground into bunkers but energized by their success, the resisters fight on, ultimately holding off the Nazi army longer than the entire country of Poland. They're determined to live with honor--and if need be, die with honor--while lighting the torch for resistance in the occupied territories.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
44 of 45 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Warsaw ghetto uprising as more than a moral victory November 7, 2004
"Uprising" is a story of the Holocaust that really could not be told until NBC showed this two-part made-for-television movie in 2001. The story of the Warsaw ghetto uprising has been told before. In the 1978 mini-series "Holocaust," a major subplot had to do with Moses Weiss (Sam Wanamker), who becomes active in the uprising before being caught and shot by the Nazis at the end. Other movies dealing with the Holocaust have touched on this heroic but futile act of resistance against Hitler's army. This time, however, the point is to cast the uprising in terms that count for more than a moral victory.

When Poland fell to Nazi Germany the city's Jewish population was put into a walled in section of the city, thereby creating the ghetto. In the summer of 1942, after 300,000 Jews were deported from Warsaw to Treblinka the first reports of mass murder were heard in the Warsaw ghetto. Mordecai Anielewicz, then 23-years-old, and other young Jews formed the Zydowska Organizacja Bojowa (Jewish Fighting Organization), issuing proclamations calling for the Jewish people to resist being sent away in railroad cars to the death caps, and firing upon German troops trying to round by Jews for deportation.

The "Uprising" began on April 19, 1943, when German troops and police entered the ghetto and were repulsed by the fighters. It is believed that less than a thousand such fighters held off the heavily armed and better trained Germans for almost a month, using mostly pistols and Molotov cocktails, but on May 16 the revolt was finally crushed. Seven thousand of the 56,000 Jews captured were shot, and the rest were deported to either killing centers or concentration camps to be exterminated by the Nazis. At one point the Warsaw ghetto consisted of 450,000 human beings.
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33 of 35 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Brave effort October 10, 2002
By A Customer
A full telling of the uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto is rare - normally it's a short segment of a longer tale about WWII or the Holocaust. So this DVD is a welome addition to historical drama and complaints about a lack of pace or action are unfair.
The Jews walled up in the ghetto did not have huge arsenals of weapons and the people who became heroes were ordinary citizens -hence the lack of a huge cast of big-name stars is welcome. And the performances coaxed from the likes of Cary Lewes, as the sickeningly anti-semitic film-maker Fritz Hippler are worthy of praise. And it was a revelation to see David (Friends) Schwimmer turning in such a heart-rendering turn as one of the heroes of the revolt (and he gets full marks for a realistic but not-over-the-top accent).
Where the drama falls short - as all are bound to - is the inability to reveal the true horror these human beings were forced to endure - and for how long. A 10-part mini-series mihght give some idea of scale of time. The drama Tenko, about women interned by the Japanese, ran for three series! Also missing was the role played by very young children in getting information and food in and out of the Aryan side of Poland.
However, not enough people know enough about this dark period of history so Uprising should be seen.
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38 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Years later, but we must never forget... January 29, 2005
I have seen a variety of Holocaust films, due to my interest in World War II, and I would have to say this is probably one of the best, if not the best, that I've ever seen.

Uprising brings to us everything that Schindler's List does: touching story, great cinematography, and good actors. However, instead of focusing on a middleman such as Schindler (German helping Jews), this film focuses on the Jews helping themselves.

The emotions were strongly carried through due to overall great performances from many actors: Leelee Sobieski, Hank Azaria, David Schwimmer, Donald Sutherland, and many more.

This is film of hope, love, and cherishing life while you have it, all while in the toughest of times. These people overcame enormous odds by standing up to the oppressive and barbarous reign of the Germans, and not unlike one of the German characters, we now have it on film. Moreover, it is a great film.
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26 of 32 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Inspirational but historially inaccurate June 17, 2002
"Uprising" is an inspirational story on survival and resistance under impossible odds. However, the film is far from a historical presentation of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. The producers filled the film with half-truths and misrepresentations of the Polish assistance to the Ghetto Uprising. The Polish resistance or AK provided any available support even though their own munitions were scarce and crude in comparison to the well-armed Germans. One of the famous Jewish fighters, Marek Edelman, stated that the uprising would not be possible without the needed support of the Polish resistance. In addition, Poles provided valuable knowledge on military tactics along with techniques on bomb assembly and other weaponry for guerilla warfare.
The credibility of the film is lost when the general Polish population is displayed as a disconcern when the ghetto burned as exhibited during the communion service in the Catholic Church. It is well documented that the Poles were filled with horror, sorrow, fear and helplessness towards the plight of the ghetto Jews. In reality, closing all Polish Catholic Churches would be in the best interest of the Germans since Churches provided a multitude of hiding places for Jewish survivors.
The film falsely depicts the Polish population as well-fed and prosperous under the German occupation while the ghetto suffered. Starvation was the norm for both Jews and Poles while Poles lived in constant fear of unexpected rounded-ups where Poles were murdered in the street or sent to forced labor camps. Normal life in Poland became upturned and violated.
Another impossible scene shows an anti-semitic Polish secretary in the Pawiak or German gestapo headquarters.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Very moving and well played.
Published 1 day ago by DannyBoy
5.0 out of 5 stars WATCH!
Published 1 month ago by 10Bethj
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
very satisfied with purchase.
Published 1 month ago by charles l. raban jr.
5.0 out of 5 stars Tyranny Replaced
The biggest gap or omission in most histories of the Second World War is what happened in Poland. By the end of the war the country had lost not only a fifth of its population, but... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Richard S. Fuegner
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 2 months ago by E. Castaneda
5.0 out of 5 stars The movie was great, it made me feel as though I was ...
The movie was great,it made me feel as though I was there feeling what these folks were going through. Read more
Published 2 months ago by scott savage
5.0 out of 5 stars leelee-1
good movie, I like Leelee , thanks.
Published 2 months ago by robert t. rumfelt
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome
A great film on WW2 this is perfect for my WW2 obsession Check this DVD out perfect history lesson.
Published 2 months ago by A Bucket of Corn
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome
A great film on WW2 this is perfect for my WW2 obsession Check this DVD out perfect history lesson.
Published 2 months ago by A Bucket of Corn
2.0 out of 5 stars The editing it horrible
Love this movie. Have the DVD. Got it on amazon so I could watch it anywhere, every 10 minutes long gaps of darkness 30-50 seconds. Initially thought it was not working. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Michael P. Mcintire
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