In a POW camp, the Nazis have placed the huts far from the boundary so that any escape tunnel would have to be a long one. One British officer has the idea of starting a daily gynmastics routine using a vaulting horse: they can place it near the boundary and start a tunnel from under it. He and two others do escape the camp by this means and plan to make for neutral Sweden. To do that, they'll not only have to move around without arousing any suspicions, but also find a stranger from a neutral or occupied country who'll be willing and able to help them. Written by
Did You Know?
The events on which the film is based took place at the same prisoner of war camp (Stalag Luft III) and at the same time as the events in the much better-known film of the same genre, The Great Escape
. The escape committee of prisoners that was planning the latter decided that other escape activity had to be going on at the same time so that life in the camp would appear normal to the Germans. It was the Wooden Horse tunnel that fell into this category. See more
Whilst the escape is in progress there is a quick shot of a German guard near the compound fence. His rifle has a British pattern webbing sling,the upper brass buckle can be seen clearly. See more
[Doctor, visiting prisoners in hospital, hears they are listening to music by Beethoven
Ah, Beethoven. He is a good German.
[calls out from the background
Yes. He's dead.
It is the constant hope of nearly every prisoner-of-war - if not, indeed, his duty - to escape and rejoin his unit. This film shows how three British officers carried out an actual escape from a German camp in the last war. It was made mostly in Germany and Denmark, with the help of the British War Office and Air Ministry and of Danish and German civilians. See more
Referenced in Colors
"Nymphs and Shepherds"
Composed by Henry Purcell See more