Some of the responders here are rather negative.
My take on Saving Private Ryan is that is the first time Hollywood really showed the horrors of the battlefield. I didn’t get the same feeling from other Hollywood productions — even the Vietnam based ones.
For those of us who have never experienced war, Saving Private Ryan was an eye-opener. We kind of grew up on “get shot, fall down, and quickly die”. SPR kind of broke that image. War usually doesn’t work that way.
My uncle and his brother were on the second wave at Juno beach. They saw the bodies and blood; yet they soldiered on. One Christmas, my uncle got a little drunk and told us some of the story: “Despite all the training we had on the beaches of England, nobody really understood what they were supposed to be doing on Juno. All plans and actions were of little use. Individuals, doing war at the spur of the moment, just pushed through until the beach was secure. Never was there an organized attack by groups of soldiers working together like the war movies portray.”
My uncle, in his year in England, apprenticed as a watch repairman when not on duty or training. He started a similar business when he returned to Canada. He met my aunt and raised two children and became quite wealthy. He was a respected businessman in his town. His brother battled alcoholism, venereal disease, and unemployment after his return. He killed himself in 1969. Both saw the same things; one was deeply traumatized.