January is my birthday month, so I decided that I would try and do something quite unique and special for this milestone in my life. I will be turning 46, so I decided to watch 47 (46+1 for good luck) of my all time favorite movies in a random order over the course of this month. I have reviewed every one of these films already, but I will now give new perspectives on them all. Every one of these films received a 10/10 scoring from me. Some of these reviews will contain spoilers so if you have never seen them before, I recommend that you read some of my previous reviews of the film that were spoiler free before reading on…
Hope you enjoy!
This is film #40 of the 47.
Initial Viewing Memories – Saw this on video as a teenager and couldn’t believe that a film made so long ago could be so captivating and thrilling and it changed my opinion on classic movies which in turn opened my mind to expand my film horizons. It is still quite thrilling to watch even after so many viewings and is quite high on my list of favorite films.
“You mean, you intend to uphold the letter of the law, no matter what it costs?” – Commander Shears
“Without law, Commander, there is no civilization.” – Colonel Nicholson
“That’s just my point; here, there is no civilization.” – Commander Shears
“Then we have the opportunity to introduce it.” – Colonel Nicholson
Number of Times Seen – Too many to count (on video, DVD, 21 May 2013, 19 Feb 2016, 29 Mar 2017, 8 Jan 2019 and 26 Jan 2020)
Brief Synopsis – Allied prisoners of war in a Japanese POW Camp during World War II must find a way to survive the dangerous atmosphere of the jungle along with the sadistic camp commander.
My Take on it – Spectacular epic film that is able to transport the viewer to another time and place where we can experience the kind of life that Prisoners of War experienced on the Japanese front during World War II.
The film has three lead characters who are all quite diverse in their personalities and loyalty to their country and duties and we get to see how each react to similar situations in very different ways.
David Lean does a superb job directing this film and making its scope feel so grand and epic the whole way through.
There is no doubt in my mind that this film was quite deserving of all of the accolades that it received in addition to its 7 Oscars that included Best Picture, Director and Actor.
The cast is amazing and all of the three main actors – Alec Guinness, William Holden and Sessue Hayakawa are superb in these roles.
The arcs that their characters are given are quite profound and we get to see how they each change in significant ways over the course of this story.
The movies does a wonderful job making us get a better understanding about the harsh conditions that POW’s faced during World War II and the diverse ways that these men lived their lives in order to stay alive yet at the same time hold on to their dignity no matter the cost.
This is a film that I can watch over and over and never get bored with it because it is such a powerful film with a very poignant message about survival, duty and ultimately heroism.
MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Screenwriters Michael Wilson and Carl Foreman had been blacklisted in Hollywood after having been accused of having Communist ties at the time that this movie was made, and went uncredited. The sole writing credit, and therefore the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay, went to Pierre Boulle, who wrote the original French novel, but did not speak English. Clearly he had not written the English script, and this became a long-running controversy between the Academy and the actual authors to achieve recognition for their work. In 1984, the Academy retroactively awarded the Oscar to Wilson and Foreman. Sadly, Wilson did not live to see this, and Foreman died the day after it was announced. When this movie was restored, their names were added to the credits. (From IMDB)
Rating – Oscar Worthy (10/10) (no change from original review)
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