The opening of Saving Private Ryan is one of the most breathtaking in cinema history portraying the brutal landing on Omaha in all its gory detail. Watching ships full of men being gunned down before they even step foot on land really gives you a new appreciation of what they must have gone through and instantly grabs your attention.
Following the D-Day landing Captain John Miller is then instructed to lead a small group of men into enemy territory to find Private James Ryan, whose three brothers have been killed in combat, in order that he can return home to his grieving mother. The logic behind risking the lives of eight men to save just one is questionable at best but it provides the jumping off point for a host of harrowing and tense set pieces that will keep most glued to the screen.
Since its release the movie has been heavily criticized in some corners for its lack realism (every soldier seems to be American for a start) but it is difficult to deny that Saving Private Ryan is a brilliant piece of cinema and amongst the best war movies ever made.