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Lawrence of Arabia (1962)

PG  |   |  Adventure, Biography, Drama  |  11 December 1962 (UK)
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Ratings: 8.4/10 from 177,583 users   Metascore: 100/100
Reviews: 546 user | 176 critic | 7 from Metacritic.com

Follows a brilliant, flamboyant and controversial British military figure and his conflicted loyalties during wartime service.



(writings), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Top Rated Movies #84 | Won 7 Oscars. Another 22 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Turkish Bey (as Jose Ferrer)
I.S. Johar ...
Gamil Ratib ...
Michel Ray ...
John Dimech ...
Zia Mohyeddin ...


An inordinately complex man who has been labeled everything from hero, to charlatan, to sadist, Thomas Edward Lawrence blazed his way to glory in the Arabian desert, then sought anonymity as a common soldier under an assumed name. The story opens with the death of Lawrence in a motorcycle accident in Dorset at the age of 46, then flashbacks to recount his adventures: as a young intelligence officer in Cairo in 1916, he is given leave to investigate the progress of the Arab revolt against the Turks in World War I. In the desert, he organizes a guerrilla army and--for two years--leads the Arabs in harassing the Turks with desert raids, train-wrecking and camel attacks. Eventually, he leads his army northward and helps a British General destroy the power of the Ottoman Empire. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A mighty spectacle of action and adventure! (Australia) See more »


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



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Release Date:

11 December 1962 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Lawrence de Arabia  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$32,930 (USA) (4 October 2002)


$6,000,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (director's cut) | (1970 re-release) | (original) | (premiere) | (restored roadshow)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording) (70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints) (original version)| (magnetic prints) (35 mm) (original version)



Aspect Ratio:

2.20 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When filming in Jordan, every drop of water for the production was brought in by truck from the nearest well, 150 miles away. See more »


In the well scene when Lawrence and Ali first meet, Ali uses the water bag of the man he has just killed to hoist up some water, fill Lawrence's cup and drink from it. He then drops the water bag, which clearly falls behind the well and can be heard splashing on the ground, but that sound is immediately followed by a much louder dubbed sound of the water bag hitting the bottom of the well. See more »


[first lines]
Colonel Brighton: He was the most extraordinary man I ever knew.
Vicar at St. Paul's: Did you know him well?
Colonel Brighton: I knew him.
Vicar at St. Paul's: Well nil nisi bonum. But did he really deserve a place here?
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits read: Introducing Peter O'Toole as T.E. Lawrence. However, O'Toole had already played very noticeable roles in two feature-length films, the Disney 1960 version of Kidnapped (1960), and The Day They Robbed the Bank of England (1960). See more »


Featured in John Ford et Monument Valley (2013) See more »


Brining Gasim Into Camp
Music by Maurice Jarre
Performed by London Philharmonic Orchestra
Conducted by Maurice Jarre
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

23 December 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I first saw this movie on a scratchy VHS almost twenty years ago (I was 10). Liked it (sort of-enjoyed the battle scenes and the train blowing up), but didn't understand why my dad was so crazy about it.

The next time was on laserdisc (remember those?) almost 10 years ago and I was hooked. I finally got it - the conflict, the performances, the music, the dialogue - all mesmerising.

But it was only in 2002, when I saw the 40th-anniversary reissue on 70mm that I was completely blown away seeing the scale, the enormity of Lean's accomplishment. There were scenes that gave me goosepimples (the opening credits, the cut from the matchstick to the desert sunrise, "nothing is written" - others too numerous to mention).

The point of this rather rambling review is this - a movie that can evoke such passion in its admirers stands by itself, beyond reviews or criticism. If you haven't seen it yet I envy you, because you get to experience it for the first time.

210 of 268 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Lawrence of Arabia is boring! peggy714
#79!! janowski_steve
Gertrude Bell WebBeachBoy
Why did Lawrence go to Deraa? ahmedlimam-884-276782
I barely liked Ben-Hur. Will I like this? Anonymous-733
damn this movie... rileyshingler
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