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Lawrence of Arabia
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7 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

I know it's a classic and it's easy to see why but here's why it isn't perfect

8/10
Author: Robert W. (Robert_duder@hotmail.com) from Ontario, Canada
5 February 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I finally decided to watch the classic Lawrence of Arabia in my attempt to catch up on film classics I have never seen. Now I don't for one minute intend on talking down about this film. It is easy to see why Lawrence of Arabia stands the test of time as a classic. The absolutely stunning breathtaking cinematography, the incredible 'would be' special effects that probably had to be done with man power and the thousands and thousands of extras used in stunning battle scenes and traveling across the desert. You can't get more spectacular than the scenery in this film. Hands down a huge 10/10 for what they did with the cast and scenery. The story is simple enough and based on a true story of World War II British soldier who finds himself conflicted on who he is truly fighting for when he becomes entangled with the Bedouin armies of Arabia. I also realize that this is an epic and that being said and being filmed in the sixties, historical epics were known to be lavish productions. I watched this film on a 2 disk DVD and at the end of the first DVD I was so pleased, I almost wanted to watch it again and again and slap a perfect score on it. I would have been just as happy to have it end right there. But as it turned out there was another disk with an hour and a half on it adding the total running time to an outstanding 3 1/2 hours and I have nothing against that unless it's not necessary. I found the last part of this film very unnecessary, it dragged, it bogged down the story and I found it quite confusing. Yes I understand that it brought about T.E. Lawrence's conflicted opinions about the war but it just almost felt like an anti-climax and sadly brought the film down for me.

Veteran actor in his screen debut Peter O'Toole plays Lawrence. I think O'Toole perfectly captures everything Lawrence was meant to stand for. O'Toole as Lawrence is conceited, young, naive, bull headed, and has great delusions of grandeur which he uses to win over the Arabians. On top of these less than desirable traits Lawrence has incredible charisma and leadership qualities and O'Toole is the same way. At first he seems almost smug and monotone but the more you watch him the more he electrifies the screen and you become enamored with him. I don't know if that's talent of a gift but either way he makes the film what it is. The incredible Sir Alec Guinness plays Prince Feisal, the leader of one faction of the Arabian army who leaves his men to the trust of Lawrence after becoming enamored with him. It's not a big role but when Guinness is on screen he makes it larger than life. Anthony Quinn is the opposite leader Auda abu Tayi whom Lawrence brings together with Feisal's men to take Damascus away from the Turkish army. Quinn is much like Guinness who doesn't need a lot of screen time to make an impression. They are both worthy of royalty. And Omar Sharif is brilliant and intelligent as Sheriff Ali who becomes Lawrence's wing man and friend.

The cast are all brilliant together, the story is of epic proportions and the direction which was Academy Award winning by David Lean is nothing short of brilliance. It might possibly be one of the best directed films I have ever seen. It's simply breath taking. But so much extra is added that I'm just not sure it was necessary. Lawrence becomes so conflicted and ends up leaving them and it just seems to contradict everything he had done. Perhaps I am just being petty about it and I didn't like the ending but nonetheless the last hour and a half was too much for me. Still I don't regret for a minute seeing it and I encourage everyone to see this because even now it's spectacular to watch, imagine how it felt more than 40 years ago. 8.5/10

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7 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Greatest film ever made

10/10
Author: DAN HUMPHREY from United States
29 November 2006

Majestic isn't a term I would apply to many films, but "Lawrence of Arabia" deserves it. So brilliant on so many levels, acting, screenplay, photography, costume design, set decoration and above all direction. David Lean is by far my favorite director and his influence can be seen in countless other films. Peter O'Toole is by far my favorite actor and this is probably his greatest performance, although The Ruling Class is equally stunning. If you would like some insight into the huge mess in the Middle East, this is one film you must watch. Martin Scorsese commented that "Lawrence" could never be made today. I agree but for different reasons. I do not think there is any director alive today who has the insight, the patience or the work ethic that was needed to make "Lawrence" Devoting millions of dollars to an intelligent historic epic would also be something that today's movie makers would never venture into. David Lean was one of the last of a dying breed of precise filmmakers (Kubrick being the other) that went to any lengths and expense to get just the right shot.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Expensive and breathtaking screen adaptation of enigmatic adventurer and military T. E. Lawrence

9/10
Author: ma-cortes from Santander Spain
17 June 2015

Mighty motion picture of action and adventure deals with Thomas Edward Lawrence , following this brilliant , flamboyant and controversial British military figure and his conflicted loyalties during wartime service . He was renowned for his liaison role during the Sinai and Palestine Campaign, and the Arab Revolt against Ottoman Turkish rule of 1916–18 . This blockbuster is a huge accomplishment in every respect . It is a groundbreaking epic that is also literate and intelligent . Tremendous scenes , spectacular battles , intense drama , lots of action and awesome production design and art design from John Box and John Stoll . Still , the only way to really appreciate it turns out to be in Super Panavision and on big screen . Overlong though still knockout and resulting to be an immortal film . Based on T. E. Lawrence's book , ¨Seven pillars of wisdom¨ with interesting screenplay by Robert Bolt and Michael Wilson . The breadth and variety of his activities and associations, and his ability to describe them vividly in writing, earned him international fame as Lawrence of Arabia . Peter O'Toole is splendid in his film debut , and made him an instant star . Colorful and impressive cinematography in Technicolor by Freddie Young . Unforgettable and classic musical score by the great Maurice Jarre . Lavishly produced by Sam Spiegel and masterfully directed by David Lean who bring us an overwhelming show delving deeply the complex personality of the British , semi-Arab leader who led the revolt against Turkey in WWI . Reissued in 1989 , a stunning version which restored a lot of cuts made over years . As many scenes of dialog were missing and as a result Peter O'Toole and a number of living principals returned and re-recorded dialog from more than 20 years previously . An ultimate thinking people's spectacle .

Adding more biographic elements about this rich character T. E. Lawrence (16 August 1888 – 19 May 1935) , he was a British archaeologist, military officer, and diplomat . Lawrence (Peter O'Toole) was born out of wedlock . He became a practising archaeologist in the Middle East , working at various excavations and in 1914, before the outbreak of the Great War , Lawrence was commissioned by the British Army to undertake a military survey of the Negev Desert while doing archaeological research . Lawrence's public image resulted in part from the sensationalized reportage of the Arab revolt by an American journalist, Lowell Thomas (Arthur Kennedy) , as well as from Lawrence's autobiographical account . In 1917, Lawrence arranged a joint action with the Arab irregulars (Omar Sharif , I.S. Johar) and forces including Auda Abu Tayi (Anthony Quinn) against the strategically located but lightly defended town of Aqaba. On 6 July, after a surprise overland attack, Aqaba (it was recreated in a dried river bed in southern Spain, consisting of over 300 buildings) fell to Lawrence and the Arab forces . After Aqaba, Lawrence was promoted to major, and the new commander-in-chief of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force, General Sir Edmund Allenby (Jack Hawkins) , agreed to his strategy for the revolt . In1918, Lawrence fought in the battle of Tafileh, an important region southeast of the Dead Sea, together with Arab regulars . The battle was a defensive engagement that turned into an offensive rout and was described in the official history of the war as a "brilliant feat of arms". Lawrence was involved in the build-up to the capture of Damascus in the final weeks of the war. Much to his disappointment, and contrary to instructions he had issued, he was not present at the city's formal surrender, having arrived several hours after the city had fallen. Lawrence entered Damascus around 9am on 1 October 1918 but was only the third arrival of the day; the first was the 10th Australian Light Horse Brigade, led by Major Harry Olden, who formally accepted the surrender of the city from acting Governor Emir Said . In newly liberated Damascus —which he had envisaged as the capital of an Arab state—Lawrence was instrumental in establishing a provisional Arab government under Faisal (Alec Guinness) . During the closing years of the war Lawrence sought, with mixed success, to convince his superiors , General Allenby (Jack Hawkins) , General Murray (Donald Wolfit), Colonel Brighton (Anthony Quayle) in the British government that Arab independence was in their interests . The secret Sykes-Picot Agreement between France and Britain contradicted the promises of independence he had made to the Arabs and frustrated his work . In 1935, Lawrence was fatally injured in a motorcycle accident in Dorset.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

An Epic Masterpiece for All Time

10/10
Author: JimCanuk from Canada
12 November 2012

While this past weekend has seen the launch of the latest James Bond movie, Skyfall, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the first James Bond movie, this fall marks the 50th anniversary of the premiere of David Lean's Lawrence of Arabia, a winner of seven 1962 Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

Today I went to a local Cineplex theatre to watch the 2012 50th anniversary digitally remastered version; it had to be digitally remastered to be compatible with today's projection equipment. This was exposed when they had technical difficulties starting the second half.

Aside from its awards for film mastery it is unique in that there is a 15-minute intermission after a couple of hours. There are five to ten minute musical preludes to each half of the production. At 222 minutes it is only a couple of minutes longer than Gone With The Wind and the longest movie to win a Best Picture Oscar.

From the time I first saw it in early 1963 at the then multi-hundred seat Carlton Theatre in Toronto (next to the old Maple Leaf Gardens) it remains in my memory as the best film production I have seen over time. The amazing Super Panavision 70 cinematography, Maurice Jarré's symphonic musical accompaniment and the overall sound established new performance standards. More surprisingly is that, even today, the script is not out-dated, with its philosophical musings, innuendos and double entendres. The plot, covering and exposing the complexities and emotions of the constantly challenged soldier is still gripping and keeps you on the edge throughout (I have now seen it five or six times over the years).

The scenes of Arab tribal armies on the move are epic for their coverage of hundreds of riders thundering through each such scene. With its desert panoramas and these scenes of undisciplined herds of camel and horseback riders, it is really best seen on the large screen. It was perhaps the first movie to show the full advantage of, what was then, relatively new wide screen 70 mm film technology. The sound and music is still ringing in my ears hours later. To absorb it totally on even the best of today's home theatre systems would be a challenge .

For all the video and sound technology available today, Lawrence of Arabia established a new movie theatre experience that is only mildly embellished by today's technology.

Bottom line: Lawrence of Arabia remains an epic and one of the greatest films ever produced, withstanding the test of time. Read the Wikipedia entry for more background and recognitions.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

The trick, William Potter, is not MINDING that it hurts.

10/10
Author: Hairy_Lime from Phoenix, Arizona
9 January 2012

A British soldier – the titular Lawrence - and his Arab guide Tafas have stopped at a desert well to drink. Through a mirage and the shimmering heat, we see a black speck in the distance. "Turks?" Lawrence wonders. Slowly, with minimal cutting, the speck resolves itself into a man on a horse who rides up, lowers his weapon and shoots dead the Arab. It is a beautiful, shocking and violent entrance and given the time it takes, a surprisingly economical one. We meet the second main character and juxtapose his character with Lawrence's. We see the stupid and brutal nature of the inter-Arab feuds and squabbles – which sets up much of what happens later – and the stupid and brutal nature of life in the desert – a desert which might be as important a character as Lawrence.

But as the movie plays out, it also plays off what that scene reveals. We already have some inkling that lurking under the civilized veneer Lawrence wears something darker is lurking. We know he is something of a professional risk taker – we've seen his demise, for instance, and the way his immediate reaction to learning how to drive a camel is to put spurs to it. But there is a masochistic streak running beneath it that may explain Lawrence's actions better: his trick with putting out a match with his fingers, despite the pain. It is significant that when he gets what he wants, an assignment in the desert that he thinks will be "fun" ("It is recognized that you have a funny sense of fun.") he blows out the match rather than snuff it with his fingers – the jump cut to the desert is not only beautiful and beautifully done, it indicates that the desert fulfills the need for pain that the lit match had poorly filled. After Lawrence leads a spectacular raid on Aqaba, he reports, "We killed some, too many really. I'll manage it better next time." But he also reports having to execute a man: "There was something about it I didn't like…. I enjoyed it." In the end, Lawrence and Ali have changed places: it is Lawrence who leads and participates in the bloody massacre of Turkish troops at Tafas – now where in this review have we seen that name before? - and Ali who resists violence. But then, Prince Feisal had already previsioned what would happen with Lawrence. He tells the reporter Jackson Bentley, "With Major Lawrence, mercy is a passion. With me, it is merely good manners. You may judge which motive is the more reliable." And Lawrence learns that the internal squabbles of the Arabs are not the greatest problem he faces. Prince Feisal had already indicated this: "The English have a great hunger for desolate places. I fear they hunger for Arabia." Lawrence has been aware all along that his superiors have designs on Arabia (the historical Lawrence, by the way, had known of the agreement between England and France all along, but in the movie he learns of it only after Tafas, when the push for Damascus is planned.) and his work for the Arabs is designed to make them an English client state. Lawrence has been working all along for two goals, an independent Arabia and an Arabian client state.

But then, this just scratches the surface of what is going on with Lawrence's character. We see so much more: the shameless exhibitionism, the intelligence, the possible sexual orientation – one wonders if his reaction to being raped in Deraa is similar to his explanation for the match trick – his belief in his own indestructibility, his conflicted loyalties and his love for Arabia, whatever the questionable source for that love might be. The movie needs a great performance in the central role, and boy do we get that. Peter O'Toole was a little-known Irish actor, primarily on stage, before this role. He is, if a strictly hetero man may say it, magnetically gorgeous and as perhaps our mostly naturally flamboyant actor he is a natural for the part of "A poet, a scholar, and a mighty warrior (and) also the most shameless exhibitionist since Barnum and Bailey." He gets the conflicts inside Lawrence and wisely never resolves them. O'Toole's performance here is perhaps the single most unfairly overlooked lead performance in AMPAS history. This man being competitive Oscarless is a crime.

The movie also has perhaps the best color cinematography ever – Freddie Young gets the credit for that – and a magnificent score, from Maurice Jarre. Along side O'Toole's great performance are superb performances by Sheriff as Ali – smoldering sexuality in the love interest – the always welcome Jack Hawkins and Claude Raines as Lawrence's British handlers, Anthony Quinn as an Arab leader of questionable loyalties and clear motivation, and Jose Ferrer in a brilliant brief turn as a Turkish Bey. The only performance that too me seems off key is Alec Guinness as Feisal. Not that Guinness is not a great actor, but perhaps because for me Guinness is the most British of British actors, even when made up as an Arab or a Tantooean hermit he seems like, well, a Brit made up like an Arab or a Tantooean hermit.

It is not a perfect movie. Lean's direction is overall fantastic – no one handled epics like Lean. The battle sequences are beautiful, there are images (O'Toole in flowing white robes atop a train, for instance) that are perfect and iconic. But like all epics, including Lean's, there are stretches where the pace seems to lag unnecessarily and the movie drags. The ride across the Nefud should not feel like it is in real time, no matter how gorgeously filmed. But that's a quibble. This is a great film.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

I doubt i will ever see a movie better than this

10/10
Author: hemant_balz from India
21 March 2010

Wow!!!I was speechless when i saw this film.Still have memories of the movie.My father used to see this movie i guess 10 years back when i was a kid,he told me that its a masterpiece of International Cinema.But now after watching this i know this is truly a masterpiece.

No short of an epic,Peter O'Toole as T.E. Lawrence has given a performance of a lifetime.Peter will always be remembered as Lawrence.The man who loved the desert.The man who united Arabia.The man whose conflicting loyalties made Arabia a united country.The rest of the performances specially that of Alec Guinness(Prince Feisal),Anthony Quinn(Auda Abu Tayi) & not to forget Omar Sharif(Sheriff Ali) are terrific.Brilliant performances from everyone.

The scenes where Lawrence sits in the desert just feeling the sand,is so captivating.Lawrence faces such horrors of war that we can feel it through his eyes.The love for the desert makes him to change into something that he was meant to be.A legend.Truly for some men nothing is written until they write it.Though on personal fronts he would have suffered a lot in the desert & in Arabia.That has been wonderfully shown in the film.

Still i feel the last scene,where Lawrence is going back to England & just sees Arabs on camels on his way.He feels again that he belongs here.And with the memorable soundtrack the movie closes.Thats so beautiful.

David Lean has directed an epic here.This is the best movie of the century.This can never be emulated.This movie is just too difficult to surpass.I doubt i will ever see a movie better than this.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Amazing film to see on the theater screen.

10/10
Author: Rick Billman (Rick_Bman) from United States
11 September 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I had been meaning to watch this film for quite sometime but the length kept me from moving it to the top of my Netflix queue. However, I kept hearing wonderful things about it so I really was looking forward to getting a chance to see it. When the AFI Silver Theatre near me decided to show a 70mm print of it, I decided I could not put it off anymore. From all the things I had heard about this film I knew I would regret it if I passed up the chance to see it in the theater. So, even though the only time they were showing it was 7pm on Sunday nights and the theater was over an hour away, I decided that I would see it. It was well worth the lack of sleep I got that Sunday night and the grogginess I was feeling all day at work Monday.

Clocking in at just under 4 hours the movie is still paced extremely well and never seems to slow down or drag. The story is always intriguing and the characters always interesting. Peter O'Toole does a marvelous job as T.E. Lawrence, he makes this over-the-top character seems 100 percent real like few other actors could do. The supporting cast is just as wonderful; Omar Sharif, Alec Guinness, and Anthony Quinn all do a wonderful job portraying their characters. And even though this movie is about T.E. Lawrence, the supporting characters are just as important to the story and had the supporting cast not been just as wonderful as Peter O'Toole the movie would not have held me for 4 hours. However with wonderful acting all around the movie is a pleasure to watch, even once your backside starts to go numb.

The direction and cinematography of the film are some of the best I have ever seen. The desert landscapes look amazing. The battles scenes are brilliantly shot and editing together. However, the smaller, more intimate scenes are just as memorable as the larger than life battle scenes. Perhaps that is due in part to the larger than life character of T.E. Lawrence though. In fact the most memorable scene for me was the scene where Lawrence admits that what most disturbed him about killing wasn't the act itself but that he enjoyed it. Intimate scenes like this along with the huge battles scenes such as when the Arabs take Aqaba give the film its wonderful pacing that keeps the moving going.

Probably one of the most memorable shots in the film is when the character of Sheriff Ali is introduce, riding his horse through a mirage in the desert. Capturing this mirage on film could not have been an easy task and it makes for such a wonderful and beautiful effect that would probably be achieved digitally these days. This one scene those is just an example of how wonderful this film looks from beginning to end. This is one of those movies that you could take almost any frame and it would be a wonderful photograph that you could hang on your wall.

The musical score of this film is also simply amazing. Now, I don't really know a lot about music and I don't always take notice of the musical score for a film but you can't help but take notice of the score for this film. It always fits perfectly with the film and the overture at the beginning really puts you in the perfect frame of mind for the film.

Overall this is just a very enjoyable film and definitely was a pleasure to see at a movie theater as it was meant to be seen. This movie also, most definitely gets my "Seven Samurai Award for Excellence in Pacing in a Film Exceeding Two and a Half Hours." Usually I am of the belief that if a film clocks in at over two and a half hours it probably could have benefited from a better editor. This is one of the few films I have seen that breaks that rule, and it is always a joy when a film is able to do that.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Nothing is written…Lawrence of Arabia

9/10
Author: jaredmobarak from buffalo, ny, usa
23 March 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Lawrence of Arabia is oftentimes listed as one of the greatest films of all time. Not only that, but many say Peter O'Toole's performance as T.E. Lawrence is the greatest piece of acting ever to be captured on screen as well. Being that the movie was made 45 years ago, I wasn't going into it thinking I would agree with either statement necessarily. Whether the four hour run time was too daunting to get my hopes up or not, I knew that no matter what, I needed to finally see this film. I was going to go for the ride from Cairo to the Middle East along with the band of Arab tribes trying to take back their land from the Turks.

On a technical level, Lawrence of Arabia has few equals. Director David Lean has created something with true epic focus. There are no advanced computer graphics multiplying fake people into huge battle scenes, this had to be done with real extras, sweltering in the desert heat waiting for their opportunity to fight amongst the movie's stars. The scope is wide and Lean is never afraid to show the desert as a desolate wasteland because the shots are beautiful to behold. The British didn't understand what Lawrence saw in the sand, but viewing the landscape shots here, the audience can see the tranquility and beauty that it truly holds. This was a big-budget movie and it shows by the settings besides the desert. When we arrive in Cairo and see the excess with which the soldiers live; its affluence is on display. Not only by the material objects, but also by the soldiers' utter ambivalence to the fight while their Arab counterparts are trekking through the sun-ravaged desert to claim victory.

It is this juxtaposition between the British forces and Arab fighters that backbone the film. Yes, T.E. Lawrence is the focal point and his journey from army outcast to Arab liberator is the story arc we follow, but it is the fact that he tries to live in both worlds which really defines the course of actions on display. Credit does have to go to Peter O'Toole for his ability to grow his character throughout and display the emotion and conflict living inside him. Lawrence saw an opportunity to help the Arab tribes regain control of their land despite Britain's refusal to give them artillery. Even at this early moment, he might have suspected this lack of true support as a sign of future motives, but he was so focused on his cause and the fact that he could do anything he set his mind to, he just didn't care. When he finally succeeds with his first mission, he returns a broken man, having killed and seen things he never wanted to see. He knew it was all for the best, though, and needed to stick by his word of setting his new friends into a free land. Only when the men at Cairo, who once laughed at his expense, praise him with accolades and promotions does Lawrence first start becoming a man without a clear purpose. A man that was accepted by no one now finds himself loved by two distinct cultures, and must somehow cope with the success or eventually fall as a result.

Besides the excellent performance by O'Toole—intense, sarcastically humorous, and heartbreakingly real throughout—we are also treated to an acting clinic from the supporting players. Omar Sharif is fantastic as the Arab Sheriff Ali who agrees to accompany Lawrence on his suicide mission to take a Turkish outpost. Sharif gives Ali a realistic progression from a man who cannot see a white man surviving anything in their future, to one who would follow Lawrence into Hell if asked. Anthony Quinn is also great as Auda abu Tayi, a leader of a tribe that can be bought by whoever offers most. His interactions with O'Toole are some of the best moments in the film because Lawrence always knows what to say to persuade Auda into doing something for his own interests and not for monetary gain, (although he still likes to take something as a souvenir for his troubles). Even Alec Guinness brings an effective performance despite playing an Arab Prince. There are many moments where the allusions to his later Obi-Wan Kenobi character come through making me smile, but the accent is hidden nicely into a British educated Arab speech that helps me forget he is as much an Englishmen as O'Toole is Irish.

In the end, however, it is the story which truly leaves a mark. During the runtime, I was slowly seeing some redundancies and wondering if an hour could have easily been chopped off without a second glance. Disappointment was setting in and I was thinking I might have to give it a 7 or 8 rating as a whole. Once the final scenes play out though, you realize why we needed everything that came before. It is Lawrence's success in battle that both leave him broken but also ripe for persuasion into continuing on. The British were looking for a way to have Arabs do the work but eventually swoop in and take the Middle East for themselves, and with Lawrence, they had their man to rally the troops. Lawrence was neither British nor Arab, but instead a man beyond his dreams and ideals. The Arab tribes would never be able to live in harmony for a peaceful unity, and the British were just waiting for the implosion to occur. When all is said and done, Lawrence realizes he is not the God that people, and himself, saw him as, but a pawn that has been played from the beginning. His sanity and drive for good is sucked out of him because while it seemed he was accepted by both worlds, he really didn't belong to either.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Haunting

10/10
Author: eyecandyforu from United States
16 January 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Hard to believe that after 45 years of loving movies, I finally got around to seeing Lawrence of Arabia. As with many films that make a huge impact on me, I dreamt about it that night. I dreamt of flowing white silk robes, decorated horses and sand. Lots of sand. Many have already given a synopsis and cast list, many have listed the films assets. For me, after the experience (and trust me, at 227 minutes, it's an experience) I was left feeling stunned and empty, stunned by the depiction of the desert, empty from the realization that nothing within the dark expanses of human experience really changes. Yes to one reviewer who was not sure Lawrence ever existed. He did. A very complicated man, shy yet full of an odd bravado, Lawrence reveled in the drama of a land he loved but could not be part of. He sought adventure and when it came, was overwhelmed and ultimately disappointed that his life was not like the childhood adventure tales he undoubtedly read. The film tells his story in broad strokes, very strong characters surround Lawrence, whose character is played brilliantly by O'Toole who stays quietly charismatic (as well as physically beautiful) creating an enigma that is never really understood. You're left wondering how the hell he got away with what he did, yet amazed that it happened. The futility of war is tempered with the romanticism it creates. People come together in common causes, strong relationships develop, heroes emerge. Wars are full of such scenarios and inspirational tales. But this is at heart the story of a film flam game, a bait and switch played on a grand scale with an Empirical Western giant manipulating desperate peoples using one of their flamboyant yet influential soldiers as a ploy. This con game was the undoing of T. E. Lawrence and he spent the rest of his life in guilt, trying to escape his fame, changing his name, reluctant to accept profits from his memoirs and wondering if the adventure had been worth it.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

simple tale of a man and his conflicts, a poetic expression amidst barbaric wars, an epic saga well told

Author: ns_sunilkumar from India
8 January 2007

i finally got to see it yesterday after many half starts and chances. i was just mesmerized by the epic proportions of this war movie which might have gone wrong in so many ways. but what comes out, is a beautiful piece of story well told. the beautiful shots of the great deserts, the heart churning melody that rises with every wind on the dunes, the battle scenes of epic proportions, the depiction of an Arab world and their culture ... what touched me more is the way the different phases of the central character is captured and managed. the inner conflicts and the human emotions. from a simple good for nothing soldier to the messiah like figure in the Arab kingdom to mere puppet in the hands of the politicians... this movie for me has different layers which one can appreciate. the purpose of our lives and its futility is so very well demonstrated through the rise and fall of our hero.

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