MOVIE REVIEWS

Colditz Story

8/10 NR

Wikipedia

January 25, 1955

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Escape from Colditz Castle.

Guy Hamilton directs and co-adapts the screenplay with Ivan Foxwell from the P.R. Reid novel of the same name. A story based on actual facts, it stars John Mills, Lionel Jeffries, Bryan Forbes, Anton Diffring, Richard Wattis, Ian Carmichael and Eric Portman. Music is by Francis Chagrin and cinematography by Gordon Dines.

The story essentially follows the repeated escape attempts by allied prisoners held at Colditz Castle. It shows the hard luck stories, the bonds that are formed between the men, the regime and day to day life they lived by, and of course it builds to the historical finale.

It's structured with great balance by the makers, who manage to wring out a number of tense sequences whilst also ensuring that humour shines brightly. It gives the pic the requisite feel of stiff upper lippery, imbuing the characters with justifiable heroism in the face of being a POW, which all told plays as inspirational stuff.

Acted with aplomb by a notable cast, this delightful pic harks back to a a grand time of British film making, while simultaneously doffing its cap towards the real life allied soldiers who wound up in war prison establishments. 8/10

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