I can t praise this book enough This was made into a miniseries which was one of the most hypnotic and thrilling I ve ever seen There was one lighthearted scene where the young sailors lustily sing their favorite song It s a Long Way to Tipperary that I found hilarious.
This book is about 550 pages long, and for the first 300 pages I was wondering what it was all about and why I was wasting my time A hundred pages just described the sea Another hundred pages gave details of the submarine The third hundred pages described a never ending storm spoiler it does end After that, though, the book is great The tension is incredible I felt actually sorry for the characters, and glad that I wasn t them The ending was fittingly unhappy for a war book I felt no joy or relief, only a general sense of what a fucked up situation Perhaps the book could have left the first 300 pages out, or perhaps the last half was only so good because of the incredibly long build up.
I don t remember how old I was when I saw this movie on TV, but I do recall how I felt It terrified the piss out of me But I couldn t look away I m not even sure if I saw the whole movie from beginning to end or if the bits I watched just made such an impression on me it feels now in retrospect like I watched it for hours, though I know in reality it couldn t possibly have been that way because of the circumstances surrounding how and when I saw it It doesn t really matter I don t ever want to be inside a submarine under water, thanks I have enough trouble being inside a submarine above the water in the safety of a museum What if the door doesn t openNo, thanks.
Because of that viewing experience at what was obviously a very impressionable age, I ve been curious to see the movie again which will require some liquor to give me nerve or to at least read the book books are safe, right If my own imagination gets too intense I can just imagine a fluffy little puppy dog and a rainbow and everything is okay again.
Except I realized as I was reading the book that I didn t want there to be a fluffy little puppy dog or a rainbow I was totally invested in the story and I didn t want to even put it down My eyes hurt if I read too long that I began to wonder if I was even blinking It reads quickly, probably because it s hard not to keep turning the pages to see what happens next I m not normally that insane about reading, but I was excited by this story I cared, dammit, this Buccheim guy totally made me care.
I cared about all the sailor talk about whores and penises penii and all the technical jargon that didn t make an iota of sense to me but omg it didn t even matter because it was interesting.
Now I might be ready to watch the movie again From what I remember the movie stayed pretty true to the novel, but the book loses out on all the German hotness because no one even speaks German really, outside of a few occasions I seem to remember a lot of really wet, good looking Germans in the movie Ah, so obviously I was old enough to have some sort of sexual attraction when I saw the film, or at least old enough to have imagined they were really hot German guys because looking at the trailer now I don t see any particularly hot German guys though Jurgen Prochnow isn t really much to sneeze at Note Watching that trailer just made me have heart palpitations And now I have to go for a really long walk to get over this feeling that something large is sitting on my chest again The cover of my copy claims Das Boot is One of the best novels ever written about war If someone knows of a better one, please let me know I will totally read it and let you know if I agree Maybe I haven t read enough war novels but I was plenty impressed by this one.
Note For extra special effect, I recommend reading this book on either a speeding bus driven by a maniacal Port Authority driver on a route that involves a lot of potholes and curves make sure to be stuck between a window and a really fat, smelly man so you get the impression of being stuck That was one of my experiences while reading the book and it really made me feel like I was on a submarine The only thing really missing was the water and the possibly hot German guys.
Excellent book and excellent film, one of the best, most realistic and accurate WWII novels out there that show the war from the German side fairly.
I remember seeing the movie years ago While I didn t really enjoy it probably because of the subtitles subtitles are not a good reason for young people to watch a movie Definitely a case of the book being better than the movie I couldn t imagine living on a submarine during wartime cooped up with the same faces day in day out until the end of the voyage if the boat even survives What is handy is the cast of characters listed at the beginning There are a lot of people to remember Otherwise it s easy to get lost I d give this book 5 stars except it was about 200 pages longer than necessary After awhile I heard enough of all the colors of the sky and sea However after learning that the author is an accomplished artist, his obsession with color made sense.
I recommend The Cruel Sea as a companion read to Das Boot The Cruel Sea shows the war from the other side the English sailors trying to track down and kill the U boats I d also suggest Shadow Divers about the search for the identity of a mystery U boat sunk off the coast of Massachusetts.
Had a fascination for submarine stories If starting subject re read would start here At the Portland of my childhood, just after WWII, there was a dockside Navy submarine images of being inside, shudder included Also think of the Cuban Missile Crisis submarine ending Later, Wilson notes The decision not to start world war three was not taken in the Kremlin or the White House, Wilson wrote, but in the sweltering control room of a submarine partly inspired by 12 year school friend teammate becoming nuke sub officer during Vietnam years.
It Is Autumn And A German U Boat Commander And His Crew Set Out On Yet Another Hazardous Patrol In The Battle Of The Atlantic Over The Coming Weeks They Must Brave The Stormy Waters Of The Atlantic In Their Mission To Seek Out And Destroy British Supply Ships But The Tide Is Beginning To Turn Against The Germans In The War For The North Atlantic Their Targets Now Travel In Convoys, Fiercely Guarded By Royal Navy Destroyers, And When Contact Is Finally Made The Hunters Rapidly Become The Hunted As The U Boat Is Forced To Hide Beneath The Surface Of The Sea A Cat And Mouse Game Begins, Where The Increasing Claustrophobia Of The Submarine Becomes An Enemy Just As Frightening As The Depth Charges That Explode Around It Of The , Men Who Served On German Submarines Never Returned Written By A Survivor Of The U Boat Fleet, Das Boot Is A Psychological Drama Merciless In Its Intensity, And A Classic Novel Of World War II Submarine war novels are not usually my kind of thing and this one was possibly a couple of hundred pages too long, but Das Boot was worth reading It is always so easy to understand the horror of war on an intellectual level, but Das Boot takes you further and engages you in the terror of war You actually get to feel the claustrophobia, the desperation, and the feeling of helplessness under fire I never watched the movie, but may do now.