The film suggests that the forgers were able to make near-exact replicas of just about any pass that was used in Nazi Germany. In reality, the forgers received a great deal of assistance from Germans who lived many hundreds of miles away on the other side of the country.
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Several German guards, who were openly anti-Nazi, also willingly gave the prisoners items, and assistance in any way to aid their escape. The need for such accuracy produced much eyestrain, but unlike in the film, there were no cases of blindness. Some, such as Frank Knight, gave up forging because of the strain, but he certainly did not suffer the same ocular fate as the character of Colin Blythe in the film. The film depicts the escape taking place in exceptionally fine weather, whereas at the time it was freezing and thick snow lay around.
In reality there were no escapes by aircraft or motorcycle: the motorcycle sequence was asked for by McQueen, a keen motorcyclist, who did the stunt riding himself except for the final jump, done by Bud Ekins.
Almost A Great Escape: A Found Story
According to the veterans, many details of the first half depicting life in the camp were authentic, e. The film has resulted in the story and the memory of the fifty executed airmen remaining widely known, if in a distorted form. In the years since its release, its audience has broadened, cementing its status as a cinema classic. It's a strictly mechanical adventure with make-believe men. With accurate casting, a swift screenplay, and authentic German settings, Producer-Director John Sturges has created classic cinema of action.
There is no sermonizing, no soul probing, no sex. The Great Escape is simply great escapism". In a poll in the United Kingdom, regarding the family film that television viewers would most want to see on Christmas Day, The Great Escape came in third, and was first among the choices of male viewers. Despite episodes of danger and human tragedy, the film, along with the British film The Colditz Story , delight in a continual boyish game of escape and ingenuity, celebrating the courage and the defiant spirit of the prisoners of war, and treating war as fun. On 24 March , the 70th anniversary of the escape, the RAF staged a commemoration of the escape attempt, with 50 serving personnel carrying a photograph of one of the men shot.
On 24 March , the RAF held another event for the 75th anniversary of the escape. The film was simulcast over UK cinemas nationwide.
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It depicts the search for the culprits responsible for the murder of the 50 Allied officers. Pleasence appeared in a supporting role as a member of the SS. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other uses, see The Great Escape disambiguation. Theatrical release poster by Frank McCarthy.
James Clavell W. The Mirisch Company. Steve McQueen as Captain Virgil Hilts "The Cooler King": One of three Americans in the camp, Hilts irritates guards with frequent escape attempts and irreverence, to the point he is regularly imprisoned in isolation in the cooler. He has a habit for bouncing a baseball against the cooler cell wall to entertain himself, as he plans an escape attempt. He is responsible for finding materials that will be necessary for the POWs on the outside.
Richard Attenborough as Squadron Leader Roger Bartlett "Big X": An ambitious RAF officer, himself a veteran escaper and a survivor of torture by the Gestapo, Bartlett is the principal organiser of escapes and is known as "Big X" of the camp escape committee and mounts an audacious plan to tunnel out of the camp. Due to his disability he walks with a cane , he is unable to participate in the escape. He suffers from claustrophobia and is fearful of tunnel collapses, primarily coming from his previous experience digging 17 escape tunnels.
When Gestapo agent Kuhn orders that Bartlett receive strict confinement, Luger refuses treating the command with complete contempt, and saying that Allied prisoners of war are the Luftwaffe's responsibility. Robert Graf as Werner "The Ferret": A young, naive guard, with whom Hendley forms a friendship with, which he exploits as a means of obtaining his private documents, and then as blackmail to get hold of other items for the escape.
He has a condescending attitude and is the one who brings the captured Bartlett to the camp. He has disdain for Luger and the Luftwaffe's honor towards the prisoners, and believes that the camp should be brought under the jurisdiction of the SS — the Gestapo in particular.
The Great Escape
He accompanies Preissen when they bring the captured Bartlett to the camp. An ardent Nazi, he orders Luger that Bartlett be kept under the most restrictive permanent security confinement, to which Luger refuses. Kuhn warns Bartlett that if he escapes again, he will be shot.
University of Wisconsin Press. The Times. June 20, Moscow International Film Festival. Archived from the original on December 3, Retrieved December 3, Macrovision Corporation. Retrieved October 14, Time Out. The Daily Telegraph. August 13, Lewis, 84, Pilot in 'The Great Escape ' ". The New York Times. Retrieved March 15, BBC Online. Retrieved August 30, The Guardian.
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April 30, Leonard Maltin's Family Film Guide. New York: Signet. This is Local London. Retrieved September 25, Los Angeles Times 2 Mar C The Great Escape. London: Review. The Great Escapers. Mainstream Publishing. Combat Films: American Realism, —, 2d ed. Retrieved November 17, Telegraph Media Group Limited. Archived from the original on February 20, Retrieved October 26, Behind the scenes Christian Riml. Times Newspapers Ltd. Archived from the original on May 29, Retrieved October 20, There's a chase sequence in there where the Germans were after [McQueen], and he was so much a better rider than they were, that he just ran away from them.
And you weren't going to slow him down. So they put a German uniform on him, and he chased himself! BBC News. November Daily Mail Online.
Australian Financial Review
Canada at War. July 11, The Real Great Escape. NRK in Norwegian. The Independent. London : INM.
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