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Roll Tide Ravens
Alabama Fan
Birmingham, AL
Member since Nov 2015
22923 posts

Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
Strange character, he refused to kill Steamboat Willie, then kills him in the end. However, he is too afraid to go up those stairs and save Mellish, which he could have easily done since Mellish was on the floor with the German guy fighting.

I’ve just never quite understood the character.


ChewyDante
New Orleans Saints Fan
Member since Jan 2007
16714 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
quote:


I’ve just never quite understood the character.


He was a soft natured, dorky guy. What's not to understand?


Roll Tide Ravens
Alabama Fan
Birmingham, AL
Member since Nov 2015
22923 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
I get that. I guess I just wondered if there was some deeper purpose to having a character like him.


hg
New Orleans Saints Fan
Member since Jun 2009
114965 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
Am I the only one that thought when Mellish got stabbed it looked really really bad?
This post was edited on 2/23 at 9:10 pm


ChewyDante
New Orleans Saints Fan
Member since Jan 2007
16714 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
quote:

I get that. I guess I just wondered if there was some deeper purpose to having a character like him.


I assumed it was just to show the cross section of war. Everyone was drafted and not everyone is necessarily well suited or adapted for the harshness and brutality of war. Through Upham they were able to demonstrate terror, horror, compassion, sympathy, etc.

He also experienced a change in the final battle. He'd lost some if his innocence and sympathy and grew hardened through the experience of the battle. He stood in contrast to the other guys who were all battle hardened prior to their introduction on screen.


bluestem75
LSU Fan
Dallas, TX
Member since Oct 2007
1879 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
Dude should've been nominated for an Oscar. Hell of a performance.


scrooster
South Carolina Fan
Resident Ethicist
Member since Jul 2012
34647 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
He was a good representation of what we used to refer-to as our Company Conscience.

One in every Company and, for some reason, they are usually one of the most likeable guys around yet ...

They always get their buddies killed while they are trying to figure-out the bull shite in their nuggets. Everyone puts up with them because you're never quite sure if they're right or not.

It's, he's, part of the human paradox, the human delima. As a species we're one big fricking conundrum.

That's why we need borders in every aspect of our lives ... lines you just don't cross, because without boundaries we're all screwed.

His character exemplified that. I think that's what the writers and director meant to evoke ... they meant for us to ask ourselves, who crossed the line and what were the consequences?
This post was edited on 2/23 at 10:45 pm


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191
ellunchboxo
New Orleans Saints Fan
Gtown
Member since Feb 2009
17703 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
As in badly filmed and acted?

It’s hard to watch that scene.


Frac the world
Alabama Fan
The Centennial State
Member since Oct 2014
9510 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
quote:

I guess I just wondered if there was some deeper purpose to having a character like him.


Spielberg used him as a metaphor. Upham represented America failing to act while Germany murdered millions of Jews (Mellish) in the Holocaust.

He used the same image in Schindler’s List with the girl in the red dress.


BigOrangeVols
Tennessee Fan
Knoxville
Member since Jul 2015
2979 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
That scene destroys me every time. Absolutely brutal.


hg
New Orleans Saints Fan
Member since Jun 2009
114965 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
It looked like his body was in the floor so they could pull off him getting stabbed.

But yes it’s pretty damn sad
This post was edited on 2/24 at 12:31 pm


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PsychTiger
USA Fan
Charleston
Member since Jul 2004
81285 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
Upham is the Broward County Sheriff Department’s unofficial mascot.


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191
red_giraffe
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since May 2012
1021 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham


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Mr. Misanthrope
LSU Fan
Bayou Legume
Member since Nov 2012
3866 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
quote:

Dude should've been nominated for an Oscar. Hell of a performance.
Pretty much agree. He was over the top good in Breaking Bad. Edit: meant Justified. My bad.
This post was edited on 3/13 at 6:35 pm


AlceeFortier
Member since Dec 2016
1795 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
excellent point.


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SquatchDawg
Georgia Fan
Cohutta Wilderness
Member since Sep 2012
9987 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
quote:

That scene destroys me every time. Absolutely brutal.


Yeah..that was really bad. I would guess because it was pretty realistic...trying to get the guy to stop when he knew he couldn’t stop him.....uggghh...


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Peazey
New Orleans Saints Fan
Metry
Member since Apr 2012
25281 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
Life and death situations are terrifying. War is terrifying. Witnessing death is traumatizing. Killing people is not easy. You can criticize him all you want, but the vast majority of people would have reacted the exact same way that he did. They would have frozen up and not had it in them to actually kill another person. In fact many US soldiers didn't even shoot to kill in WWII. A person has to have these things conditioned into them. A very small minority of people are born with an ability to do them without a lot of of training and conditioning. Upham is changed, and really dehumanized, by his experiences over the course of the movie to where he is finally able to function in his role as a soldier.

People who are critical of Upham or don't understand him are naive to what a horribly awful thing war is.


airfernando
USA Fan
Member since Oct 2015
15248 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
quote:

Dude should've been nominated for an Oscar. Hell of a performance.


yep, especially when he comes home to backwoods Kentucky.


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Ace Midnight
Between sanity and madness
Member since Dec 2006
79751 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
He's arguably the protagonist of SPR.


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Korin
Florida Fan
Member since Jan 2014
37935 posts

re: Saving Private Ryan - Corporal Upham
quote:

Steamboat Willie



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