Schindler’s List (1993)
Steven Spielberg

Schindler’s List (1993) is undoubtedly Spielberg‘s most serious film and one of Hollywood’s most fresh films. Spielberg’s portrayal of the German industrialist who traded his wealth for the lives of hundreds of Jews provided the industry a benchmark in almost all aspects of film making. Ralph Fiennes plays the chief of the Nazi camp, Amon Goeth, and Liam Neeson plays the title character.

Oskar is troubled by the atrocities he has witnessed during his stay at the camp. He is not able to come to terms with the mindless killing of the workers at the camp. The scene I going to talk about is my favorite in the movie where Amon Goeth and Oskar Schindler are at the former’s birthday party and sitting on the balcony. Goeth is heavily drunk and points out how sober Oskar is even though he has drunk much. The following conversation ensues.

Oskar: Why do you drink that motor oil? I send you good stuff all the time. Your liver’s going to explode like a hand grenade.
Amon: You know, the more I look at you… I watch you! You’re never drunk. Oh, that’s… that’s real control. Control is power. That’s power.
Oskar: Is that why they fear us?
Amon: We have the fucking power to kill, that’s why they fear us.
Oskar: They fear us because we have the power to kill arbitrarily. A man commits a crime, he should know better. We have him killed, and we feel pretty good about it. Or we kill him ourselves and we feel even better. That’s not power, though. That’s justice. It’s different than power. Power is when we have every justification to kill… and we don’t.
Amon: You think that’s power?
Oskar: That’s what the emperors had. A man stole something… he’s brought in before the emperor… he throws himself down on the ground, he begs for mercy. He knows he’s going to die. And the emperor, pardons him. This worthless man. He lets him go.
Amon: I think you are drunk.
Oskar: That’s power, Amon. That, is power!

The video of this conversation is given here:

The following day, Goeth witnesses one of his servants bumbling and he decides to “pardon” him. Surprised, the boy exits the house. Goeth tries to feel the “power” as mentioned by Oskar only to look stupid. He immediately takes a rifle and shoots the boy to death from the balcony as Itzhak Stern (Ben Kingsley) watches on.

Amon Goeth has returned to his former self.