University of Texas at Austin
Libraries Home | Mobile | My Account | Renew Items | Sitemap | Help |
support us
University of Texas Libraries
Celebrating the Life

[Longhorn Review] The Great Escape

Material Type: All, Books — Posted on November 30, 2010, 3:47 pm

By: John Sturges

The Great Escape, in my opinion, is one of the greatest movies of all time. It
fit all the requirements, and had the perfect actors for the perfect roles. The
movie had action, humor, suspense, and the coolest part of all is the fact that it
was based on a true story. The best part of the movie though was how well
orchestrated the escape plots were. Whether it was a man making disguises for the
escapees, or another stealing “papers” from the guards so they could forge them,
they had their escape plan set up perfectly. Each passing day was a day closer to
their escape and they took advantage of nearly everything they had (spare wood from
beds, “gardening shovels,” ink, etc). It was absolutely brilliant.

The first time I
watched the movie I kept thinking to myself, “how many more ideas are they going to
come up with for the escape?”- and the movie never let me down. I also really
enjoyed seeing McQueen go back into the “cooler” on multiple occasions because it
reminded me of a little boy getting caught doing something naughty and being put in
timeout. McQueen (the lead role) had a certain swagger to him that made the audience
not only love him, but want to be him. With his cocky statements to the guards as
well as the British leaders (Roger Bartlett) he came across as a “badass.” In
regards to motorcycles (aside from the chase scene in the end) he even brings up
motorcycles in general in his first stint in the cooler, perhaps foreshadowing his
famous “last ride.”

All jokes aside though, the movie was very strong due to the
fact that so many people lost their lives (50 men that were shot by the Gestapo,
Ives trying get over the fence, Colin the blind forger getting shot). It almost
seems surreal because of the leniency shown to the prisoners prior to them getting
shot. At one point its all laughs and the next- fifty people dead. While it was very
sad, I think it made the story more believable. Too many times directors try and
make the story have a “full out happy ending” where everyone meets up at the end and
everyone survived. While endings like this are nice, they make the story less.

Overall, this is a fantastic movie that tugs on the heartstrings of the
audience, appeals to the old laughing box, and even gets the blood boiling in a
couple instance- which churns out for wonderful viewing experience.

Reviewer: Sterling Ameel

View this item in the Library Catalog

Submit your own review of this item